Friday, April 29, 2011

redpoll over

A flyover redpoll was as good as it got this morning - ho hum (96).

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sunny stroll

A grand evening for a stroll down to Shite Lane. Nothing much doing in the bushes but did pick up ringed plover for the year on the beach. Back at the house, my local informant informed me of a flock of whimbrel heading south along Long Strand, containing a smaller wader - 5 minutes later there it was, booting over - knot (95). A tricky one to get at wader-deprived Galley! But why are all the waders heading south?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

another dove from above

No migs today, but did manage a stock dove, which was welcome for the year (93).

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

thats more like it!

Out at 6.30 am this morning - bit early but needs must! I'd been out for 2 hours and seen nothing birdy, just 2 basking sharks and 2 foxes. A quandry - will I hoof round the outer section of the patch and be late back home, and still prob see feck all? Or will I be good and get back a bitteen early? Thankfully, I took the sensible option, and approximately 20 minutes later was knee-deep in migs! First a wryneck, followed seconds later by a male whinchat - both spring firsts for me at Galley, and both big surprises!  (92). Excellent!

Redefining standards in record shots! Gav, where am I going wrong?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

adhering to rule #162

As Wanstead Birder puts it "Always go and see shrikes". So when news of a woodchat shrike at Ross came in, I did. And it was nice! As was the male blue-headed wagail in the same field! Self-perpetuating hot-spot! Who'd have thought?

Certainly put the measily whitethroat I had on patch this morning in the shade (90)!

Monday, April 18, 2011

early morning gropper

The small fella demanded an early walk this morning and a good job he did, for it netted us a reeling grasshopper warbler, just off patch. A quick retrace of steps, and a listen and it was on the list (89). He heard it too, it was reely close, but unfortunately he wasn't for up for looking for it. Still, a good one for the patch, by no means guaranteed every year, so delighted, if a little tired.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

struggling on

The hoped for south-easterlies didn't bring a big rush of stuff so had to resort to cashing in bankers in a 3 hour slog this morning. First up was house martin back at the cliff colony, followed by 3 manx shearwaters when i glanced seaward soon after. There was a modicum of local interest in the form of 2 male yellowhammers together and a collared dove, but nothing to get the pulse racing! Back home, a sedge warbler was giving it large from the lakeside reedbed, moving me onto 88 for the year.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

another quality mig

Was out scouring all suitable shrike hedgerows this morning for a woodchat or similar. Didn't manage to find one, but did bump into a calling tree pipit, which flushed up onto some phone wires, and gave reasonable views despite the best efforts of the small fella (85). My first spring one at Galley, and I've only had two in the autumn so a pretty good score!  Three wheatears and a singing chiffchaff were the only other migs encountered.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

wood warbler oml

After a few days holiday, it was good to get back on the patch this morning, and even better to connect with the wood warbler at Shite Lane, first found on Saturday. It was even trying out a few verses of its song this morning, and generally flopping about in the trees looking big and chunky and exciting! An excellent patch tick, and only my 2nd ever in Ireland, after my first out on Blanan on Cape Clear back in 1991.

Other year ticks this morning included 2 swallows (back at their nest sites in my absence) and a scouting party of 5 shelducks over (84). A yellowhammer was also knocking about.