Tuesday, 2 February 2016

A slight drop in the speed of the wind, for the most part a cloudless day and bright sunshine made for an altogether nicer day. The south end of the island, where the lighthouse is situated, unfortunately hasn't been covered so well in the recent weeks so a walk around and to the tip of south end was a necessity!

Around the gorse at the north of the lighthouse was extremely quiet with only a single Wren and Meadow Pipit hiding in the space and patchy vegetation. A check around the lighthouse compound, hoping for a Black Redstart which sometimes frequent the walls there, was on the most part fairly quiet again but a Common Snipe around a boggy patch to the east of the compound and the Curlew flock of 46 individuals feeding on the eastern coast were a welcome sight. From there, and south right to the tip, the odd Oystercatcher, a single Redshank, two Choughs and Grey Seals dotted the coast until the hide was reached. A Red-throated Diver in the water just below the hide appeared and re appeared before being lost out of sight altogether in the huge swell. An adult Mediterranean Gull and Black-headed Gull, six Fulmars, 17 Kittiwakes, two Shags, 23 Guillemots and a Razorbill were also seen.

The narrows proved slightly more exciting on the species front. The pair of Wigeon from a day or so ago were present in one of the bays, again accompanied by Mallards numbering eight today and a Shelduck. A further eight Redshanks, four Turnstones and 88 Grey Seals also resided in the same area. On the other areas of the narrows nine Rock Pipits, a Pied Wagtail and awesome views of a Gannet as it cruised by close off the coast.

Through the wetlands another Common Snipe was found along with two Song Thrushes, two Robins and further north two Stonechats picked their way long fence lines. To finish off the day an additional four Shelducks, presumably new arrivals, flew down the west coast as the sun was setting heading south.

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