Monday 12 December 2011

12th December 2011

Three hundred and eighty five Cormorants flew out of the river at first light but a realistic number seen during the day was at least double this with birds seemingly everywhere. The birds fishing close in appeared particularly successful, despite the blustery westerly wind, but were less so in defending their catches against the marauding Greater Black Backed Gulls. The good fishing also attracted 10 late Gannets (all adults), along with the more expected 19 Red-throated Divers and 18 Great Crested Grebes. Brent numbers were difficult to count accurately due to birds being so well spread out before the tide but the best count made was an impressive 216. Some 500 Scoter were constantly taking flight in the vicinity of the wind farm, with some closer in, but no sign of yesterday's Velvets. Four Kittiwakes & three Guillemots passed by. One Little Egret fished the gutter prior to the tide. At least eight Purple Sandpipers appeared at the North end rocks after the tide. Passerines were few & far between with a couple of unringed Blackbirds possibly new in and an unidentified lark flying towards Point of Ayr creating an unsolved mystery!

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