Monday, 4 November 2013

Stormy Weather

With forecast cataclysmic South Westerlies, I was up and on the cliffs at Ballycotton early on Saturday morning to be greeted by this.
White Water at Ballycotton

The wind was incredible, making it difficult to even open the car doors.
I hunkered down behind the car, and at times thought the wind was going to lift it on to me.

Birds were definitely moving, with good numbers of Auks, Gannets, Kits, and Sooties moving through the troughs.

Whilst watching a lovely juv Sabines gull, I saw a a dark sickle shaped underwing come up behind it, and then a gorgeous Fea's petrel arced up over the through. A full fat patch tick! It arced exceptionally high in these winds, covering ground with ease compared to the Sooties. After just a few arcs it passed behind my car and was on its way.
Another Sabs and a flock of 5 poms were the best of the rest.

The squalls passed fairly quickly and so I moved on to the gardens, but there was little of interest here.

Moving on to the lake, I ran into Murf who had seen the White Rumped Sand and found an AGP also.
A good scan from the road failed to produce either. I was going to have to brave the beach and the wind to have a chance.

An hour sat in the reeds at the lake in the lashing rain eventually produced the White Rumped as the tide came in, but I never saw the AGP. That is the second one this year on patch to give me the slip.

On returning to the car park, I checked Shanagarry where a long over due Spotted Redshank was up the back, whilst great finds bonus points came in the form of a lovely Green Winged teal in the quack flock.

Sunday was basically just a wash out with nothing of note save for a Dark Bellied Brent Goose on the lake.

Species: 173
Score: 325
Comparative Score: 136.74%

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