Thursday 31 December 2015

New Year's pix

At the very end of the year on the Nisthouse patch, Loch of Bosquoy and The Shunan.

Let's bring in the New Year with... and aurora, nice and bright behind the house tonight.

Tuesday 29 December 2015

Loch of Bosquoy p.m.

Loch of Bosquoy was beautiful this evening and a pile of birds appeared that I will be very keen to see again in the New Year.

A high flying male Hen Harrier appeared to be pursuing a a climbing Snipe but it suddenly saw something below it and started to fall, a dot (probably a meadow pipit) came into view, the harrier closed but at that moment Merlin mayhem as two screamed in below the harrier after the same prey, and a kestrel joined in too. In the confusion I did not see if the passerine escaped, but great views of the raptors.

All this raptor activity caused general unrest amongst the waders and many took to the sky, Lapwings, Curlew, Golden Plover and amongst the Lapwing six Ruff were very nice.

Louise and Cora flushed a Jack Snipe too.

 Not a Jack Snipe

Monday 28 December 2015

Beautiful day

Lovely day yesterday.

Not so nice today. Very windy and grey,

Saturday 26 December 2015

Late Sooty

A seawatch and a wander around Northside produced a very late and nice and close Sooty Shearwater, an adult Iceland Gull and a (most likely 2cy) Glaucous Gull. No pix of these interesting things as they were all brief flight views. No patchwork points though, as a very brief view of a Little Auk was just not quite good enough for a record.

 Some decent light and this Redshank was smart against the crashing breakers

 Herring Gull against stormy sea and sky

Last night's Christmas Moon

Thursday 24 December 2015

No Mandarin

A wander around Palace this morning continued to fail to locate the mandarin despite there being nearly 300 Wigeon and 17 Teal (at least). Anyway here's some pix.

Common Seals


 Raven jousting with Geebs

 Ringed Plovers

 Kelp and the Brough

Wigeon take-off

Back at home I finally managed to read the Robin's ring and this (most likely) hybrid crow was after the bird food.

Sun setting

Sunday 20 December 2015

Sunny days, and warm

Friday evening and Saturday were very warm. Really not much to report on the birding front. I did go to the PDC on Saturday to try to see the Bonaparte's Gull and missed it by half an hour. There was a Grey Wagtail there though, not a common bird here. On the way home I stopped off at the fish cages at Hatston, 24 Great Northerns and 550 Long-tailed Ducks with 100 Eider were some consolation.

Saturday I wandered around Palace and Sunday Evie but not a great deal to report. Year end creeping in.

Sun-blasted kitchen

 Burn and The Brough


Tuesday 15 December 2015

Aurora and Geminids

A bit of an aurora yesterday evening  but what was most spectacular was the Geminid show. I was out for about twenty minutes or so around midnight and saw three, one of which was just huge, didn't manage to get anything on camera but maybe that's for the best, unforgetable.

Sunday 13 December 2015

Garden birds by Go Pro

Some images from the GoPro using time lapse. The slight problem is sifting through over 7,000 images.


 ... with Greenfinches

Greenfinches and a House Sparrow

Robin (yes it is ringed, trying to get the full combination)


Sunday 6 December 2015

A tad breezy

Not much birding yesterday as a trip to A&E was required to sort out elder daughter's broken toe, or not, as the case may be. Somewhat painful apparently anyway, is now hobbling everywhere, and whinging quite a lot!!

Down to the sea today and Kits were piling through at 700 or so an hour, plenty of Gannets as well at 300+ an hour. Not much else though.

In the garden the Greenfinch flock had grown to 40 (exactly).

Here are some of them feeding on Niger seeds

Thursday 3 December 2015

Wet, windy, cold...

The Goldfinch has been here for a week

Present since April, quite a distinctive Blackbird