The Big Twitch

The Great Grey Shrike at Sleivenacloy has certainly turned out to be one of Northern Ireland's most twitched birds. Birders from all over Ireland have travelled for a glimpse of this stunning bird and Nigel Moore's photo captures the occasion I think rather well. So if your reading this and haven't got round to seeing it yet, make the effort , it may be a few years before the next one is spotted. This is the first record since 1983 when one was found by a single observer at Brackagh Moss Co.Armagh, the other three records from the 20th century are old records, one was found at Kinnegar Co.Down on the 13th Dec 1970 until 4th April 1971. Before that was a bird found dying at Ahoghill in March 1967 and later died and the first record back in 1902 was of a grey Shrike but this could easily have been a Lesser, so apart from the wintering bird from the 70's Great Grey Shrike is a very rare bird indeed. Our thanks to Nigel for the photo.

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