Saturday 26th October
Back on Thursday, Mandy had spotted a Kestrel hovering as she ws driving down from Ardnave.
Dave Pierce yesterday had arrived back on Islay with a second group of birders from Naturetrek, a shorter visit this time, and then the group are heading over to Mull.. Yesterday, they had counted 8 Common Scoter and 20 Scaup out from Blackrock on Loch Indaal. Up at Gruinart, they saw 2 juv White tailed Eagles with 6 Grey Plover noted on the estuary. At Ardnave, they had 10 Twite, around 32 Chough and also a Merlin. Also yesterday Nick Skilbeck and the group from Worcester RSPB had a Grey Wagtail seen over at Kilchiaran and they then had seen 2 different Merlins as they drove down the coast towards Portnahaven.
Today, Nick and his group had a Cackling Goose at Sunderland, and then 4 Snow Buntings down at Machir Bay. Round Loch Gorm, they had a Golden Eagle, a ringtail HH and also 2 male HH and a flock of 20 Twite. Over at Gruinart, they had a Merlin, a flock of 1,000 Golden Plover and 6 Shelduck. Finally at Bridgend, they had seen 15 Pale bellied Brents, their tally for their stay came to 93 species seen.
Gary had seen a juv. Iceland Gull flying over the top of Loch Indaal at Bridgend today. He also saw it down on the sand between Bridgend and Bowmore shortly afterwards.
Another returning birder, JD is back over for a few days.. he had seen the drake Green winged Teal at Gruinart. Also present there, a juv White tailed Eagle, 5 Blackwits and 6 Greenshanks. He also commented on seeing quite a few Redwing around, with 4 flocks noted of over 100 birds in each one, the largest being around 160 birds over close to Island House. 8 Slav Grebes were seen on Loch Indaal with 30 Pale bellied Brents seen at Bowmore.
Source: Islay Birds