Saturday 4 January 2014

A quick twitch and some more patch ticks

While doing some sorting out in the garden after my patch stroll this morning I was treated to a fly past by a male Hen Harrier as it flew over the field to the rear of the garden.

After lunch my good lady and I decided that we would head over to Veltigar in Tankerness and take a look for the Glossy Ibis that had appeared after we had headed South for Christmas. It sounds like there are at least three of these birds in Orkney. The first one appeared in Swannay on the West Mainland, then there is the one in Tankerness and the third over on Westray. Another one has been seen on Papay (Papa Westray) so this might be the Westray bird or it could be a fourth one.

We parked up at the community centre opposite Langskaill plantation, walked up to the junction with the main road and looked straight across the road towards the farm buildings and there it was feeding in the second field back from the road. There was a lot of noise coming from one of the farm machines not too far away from where the Ibis was but it wasn't phased by the noise at all it just carried on feeding. It was a bit too far away for my camera to get any decent shots but here are some record shots.

Glossy Ibis

On the way back home we stopped off for a quick look on Echna Loch and out into the bay. Today the pair of Mute Swans was present, these had been absent on the New Year's Day visit so were another species for the 2014 patch list as were the two pairs of Mallard which were also being elusive on New Year's Day. There were three female and one male Goldeneye and the male Scaup was also present in amongst 50+ Tufted Duck. There were also eleven male and nine female Wigeon present.

On the other side of the road there were 17 Long-tailed Duck, two Grey Herons and two pairs of Red Breasted Mergansers out in the bay and on the beach there was a Redshank and five Great Black-backed Gulls feeding on the remains of two seals.

So at the end of the day the 2014 patch list now stands at 45.

1 comment:

  1. Three corkers there Dave; Hen Harrier, Glossy Ibis and Long-tailed Duck.