Friday, November 28, 2008

winter is upon us!

A 1st winter iceland gull, 4 whooper swans and 1 lapwing were on Kilkeran Lake this lunchtime. Up to 10 fin whales were blowing off Galley Head this morning.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

level pegging

A buzzard thermalling around over Long Strand this lunchtime was a great patch year tick bonus (137), which equals my best ever patch score set in 2006.  It soared for a bit, before heading off north towards Rathbarry.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

lesser legs

Took in the 1st winter lesser yellowlegs on the estuary by the railway village on the way to Clon this morning. News late pm of a rival patch-lister finding a male desert 'ear north of Aberdeen fairly got me out of the house but didn't do better than a black-tailed godwit flying over with c.30 curlew - unusual here but not a year tick!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

nice day for it

A sunny calm morning so I dragged myself up to the head, and into Dirk, on the off chance of something rare (or even just a year tick). Not much doing though, with just a party of 12 long-tailed tits in Dirk. A lesser yellowlegs is on the estuary at Clonakilty, by the model railway place, with an adult ring-billed gull nearby.

Friday, November 7, 2008

clutching at straws

Tried seawatching  this morning, in a desperate attempt to glean some more year ticks. No luck though, with just 1 bonxie, 1 manx shearwater, 1 great northern diver, 1 red-throated diver and 300 kittiwakes west in an hour. Dirk had 1 chiffchaff and 1 coal tit lingering.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

there goes the autumn!

A good south-easterly (at last) heralded the end of autumn at Galley I suspect. A three hour thrashing failed to produce more than a collared dove at Shite Lane, 1 blackcap and 2 chiffchaffs in Dirk, and feck all anywhere else - very disappointing!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

last gasp

The merest hint of an easterly wind this morning was the first for about 6 weeks! Gave Galley a good thrashing on the strength of this but could only muster 2 bramblings over at Shite Lane, chiffchaff and fieldfare in Dirk, good numbers of blackbirds, song thrushes and a few redwing on the move, 1 snipe, 1 blackcap and 2 more chiffchaffs near the head, which looked new in.  The female goldeneye remains on Kilkeran Lake.

lingering ducks

The female goldeneye and tufted duck were both still on the lake this afternoon. Not much doing in Dirk this morning, with 1 coal tit and a few goldcrests the best of it.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

rb fly

A red breasted flycatcher found in Dirk Bay mid-morning was a patch tick and much appreciated for the year list (136). A blackcap was also there, with a few long tailed tits about - 22 of them in 1 flock this morning on the top lane - the plague continues! The female goldeneye was still on Kilkeran this morning too.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

another day, another duck

A female goldeneye on Kilkeran Lake this morning was a year list bonus (135). Galley this morning was a bit quieter than yesterday, with a ringtail hen harrier hunting over fields, 8 siskins and a few redpolls over, at least 6 long-tailed tits and 2 coal tits in Dirk.  A roost watch for harriers at Castlefreke marsh this evening produced 64 pied wagtails as well as good views of hunting long-eared owl and brief views of barn owl, the latter being a cork tick, no less! No harriers, tho but.

a strange day

Lots of odd sightings around Galley today for some reason, the first of which was 3 mystery ducks which flew behind a house into strong sunlight, giving me no chance of ID'ing them - looked different to the usual run-of -the-mill gank though. Next up, 9 long-tailed tits bouncing around in zero cover near Galley Head - had 5 more in Dirk later, which was presumably part of the same flock, with a coal tit there too. Vis mig was happening in the form of 6 redwings, c.20 blackbirds, 10 redpoll, merlin and a few chaffinches about too. A jay at Long Strand heading towards Galley was an unexpected mover too.  At least one of yesterday's wigeon remained on the lake, with a female tufted duck new there too, and a shelduck on the sea at Long Strand, another uncommon species for Galley. Lastly, a wing-tagged white-tailed eagle was seen low over Rosscarbery mid-morning but I couldn't glimpse it from the patch.