Friday, April 20, 2012

Satisfying and varied!

Finally, a day that I could put to my own use and with the promise of good weather too!

I decided to complete a spell of seawatching first as I'd not had an opportunity for a good session for some time. The sea had a slight swell only, was back lit from the east, although the horizon was obscured by mist, and so viewing conditions were good, particularly as the wind was a light WSW. Auks were pouring north ( probably all Razorbill ) and a count had just under a thousand fly north in 90 minutes. Southward moving Manx Shearwater, Kittiwake and Gannet were all probably involved in feeding movements coupled with local Fulmar, Black Guillemot, Shag and Common Gulls presented a never ending tapestry of movement and sound. Two Whooper Swan, two Common Scoter and a Red-throated Diver all flew north, but nothing else , surprisingly, was on the move.

Outer Loch Indaal held several Red-throated Diver and Great Northern Diver and two probable, but distant,  Black-throated Diver along with at least 54 Common Scoter. Checking for terns off Bruichladdich I had a few waders , including three Purple Sandpiper, all of which were assuming summer plumage.



Moving on towards  Loch Gorm a single Cuckoo called from somewhere across towards Gruinart and a Swallow flew through northwards. The loch held a few Tufted Duck,4 Goldeneye and Mallard and several groups of Grey lag Geese that again appear to exceed the total present last spring.A single adult Iceland Gull showed well in contrast to Common, Herring and GBBG's nearby.As if to confirm that spring was now well on its way 12 Willow Warbler were in song in the bushes along the path skirting part of the loch, but little else!

Despite calling in at several other sites no other migrants were in evidence so challenging days yet remain!