Sunday, February 9, 2014

patch gold and more gull action

The storm had abated a bit this morning and although there were still some vicious showers around, I decided to play a hunch in the hope of a good patch year tick. Last April I finally managed to get purple sandpiper properly on patch, during a fairly stormy few days - see here. My theory was that in rough weather, the rocks at Owenahincha where purps normally spend the winter are too exposed and waterlogged. Birds are therefore forced to try elsewhere, meaning the rocks at Long Strand. I picked my way through the foam and rocks this morning and sure enough, there were two purple sandpipers.

multiply this by two
Ker-ching! Theory proved! Or maybe just luck, but either way, great to get them on-patch again for 2014.

Had a look at Rosscarbery at lunchtime and dug out 3 glaucous gulls loafing on the sand (1st winter, 2 winter & adult), plus what I'm pretty sure was the Long Strand kumlien's gull from the other day. Sadly it flew off inland while I was wrestling with the scope and tripod to grill it.

A trip to Cork City this pm was enlivened by a quick detour to Ballycotton for a pop at the long-staying first winter laughing gull. A blank at first, with just a first winter glaucous gull and what appeared to be a fairly pale first winter kumlien's gull - see below. The primaries on this bird appeared better marked on one side than the other, which seems strange, but, although quite pale on the primaries, I think it is a kumlien's...

Luckily for me, the main attraction showed up then and after wolfing several large slices of bread (fewer, small pieces may be a better option?) it sat about at close range - cracker!

1 comment:

Carmo said...

Nice one chief. Same Kumlien's-type I had there a couple of weeks ago.