A wing-tagged Golden Eagle was over Farbreagagh Hill nr Pettigo Co Donegal today seen by Fionnbarr&Donal Cross (per Brad Robson)
A 1st winter Iceland Gull was amongst soaring Gulls over Portrush Harbour. Approximately 70 Greenland White-fronted Geese were mobile in the fields between
Portballintrae and Bushmills .(Colin Guy)
A Short-eared Owl was at the Bann Estuary (Peter Welch)
Another Short-eared Owl was at Ballyquintin (Keith Bennett)
Good views were had of a Red Kite today from tow path between Moira and Broadwater. (Sandy McWilliams/Ynyr Robinson)
RSPB Belfast WOW this morning had 400+ Teal, 300+ Curlew, 60+ Wigeon, 40+ Shoveler, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 4 Knot, Buzzard, 2 Snipe and 12 golden plover. (Derek Polley) A Woodcock was along Heron Road in Belfast (Samuel Thomas). There was no sign of the Short-eared Owl at Ballymacormick Point (Warren Fowles). In Donegal a Blackcap was at Malinmore, 11 Pale-bellied Brent at Rocky Point, 12 Whooper Swan at Killuris Lough near Rossbeg and 115 Sanderling and Chough at Tramore Strand (Vernon Carter).
Thanks to Peter Welch for this pic of the Bann Sorth-eared Owl:
A Barn Owl was seen landing in the waste ground adjacent to Carrickfergus Marina/Sailing Club at 1100hrs today. It stayed about 30 mins and flew off in the direction of Belfast being given a hard time by the local gulls and crows (Nigel Thompson, Carrickfergus Harbour Master).
St John’s Point to Rossglass from 8.30 to 9.30 had four small parties of Starlings (total 16 birds) coming in off the sea, 70 Brent Geese, 5 Great Northern Diver (all in summer plumage), 1 juvenile Red-throated Diver, c.100 Guillemots, 8 Razorbills, 9 Black Guillemots, 2 Shelduck, 2 Red-breasted Mergansers, 3 Wigeon, 19 Scoter, 170 Lapwing and 1 Merlin (Chris and Tim Murphy).
Ballykellly had 380 Whooper Swans, 129 Brent Geese, 2 White-fronted Geese; Myroe had 70 Whooper Swans, 43 Brent Geese, 500 Golden Plover, Bann Estuary had 250 Dunlin, 70 Sanderling, 40 Whooper Swans. (Peter Robinson / Hill Dick)
A Short-eared Owl was at Inch, Co Donegal (Boyd Bryce)
Thanks to Annette Elkin for this pic of Barnacle Geese at Lissadell, Co Sligo:
3 Twite and up to 2 Wheatear were at Ballintoy Harbour this morning (Ronnie Milligan) Yesterday 2 Pink-footed Geese were still at Castle Espie and a single Pink-footed Goose with a Greylag at the Maltings (Ivan McDonald).
There are two seats available on this Wednesday's boat trip to Islay. Please contact Jim Wells on 07856235144 for more details. Over 20,000 Barnacle Geese (and a few vagrant Canada Geese) are currently on the Island.
A Great White Egret was at Ballycarry Bridge, Larne Lough (Nicky & Ivan, Cameron Moore)
The Ring-necked Duck & 15 fly over Greenland White-fronts were at Lough Mourne, Co Antrim. A Slavonian Grebe was at Glynn (Neal Warnock)
A Wheatear and 2 Mediterranean Gulls (a 2nd winter and a 1st winter) were at Rossglass. A Kestrel, 2 Redpoll and a Goldcrest were at St John's Point. (Tim Murphy)
A juvenile Ring-necked Duck was at Lough Beg. The female type Smew was still present (David Steele)
A pair of Red Kites were flying over fields between Soldierstown Road, Aghalee and the Motorway. 9 Whooper Swans were with three young just past Gawleys Gate. (Ralph Walker)
The Pink-footed Goose and a Barnacle Goose were a mile north of Ballycarry Bridge on the Island Magee side. (Cameron Moore)
A Short-eared Owl was near Ballymacormick Lagoon this afternoon (Colin Guy)
Martin Garner - Many of our readers will be familiar with Martin from his time living here in NI with Sharon and the girls. Martin found many rarities in NI, regularly contributes on local bird ID (even on species that are not rare!), is a member of the NIBARC, and through his Birding Frontiers blog provides many though provoking articles. Some of you will also know that Martin has recently been ill. He has however provided a public update on his condition at http://bigddt.com/2015/10/24/i-got-stuff-to-do/
We all wish him and his family well in the difficult period ahead.
Thanks to Cameron Moore for the pics of the Great White Egret:
The long staying Spoonbill was seen again of the hide at Castle Espie. (Angus Kennedy) see pic below.
This morning at llendrum wind farm, Fivemiletown one Red Grouse and a Pine Martin.(Colin Bell).
c.200 Golden Plover where on the roof of the Tesco warehouse in Antrim.(Mark Smyth)
A Snow Bunting was on Melmore Head, Co.Donegal today and a 2 hr seawatch produced 20 Great Northern Divers, 1 Bonxie, 1 Manx Shearwater, 16 Golden Plover, 4 Common Scoter and a Tufted Duck.(Eric Randall)
This Leach’s Petrel was found last night in Main Street, Lisnaskea, Co Fermanagh. It seem to be uninjured, just confused and spent the night in a cardboard box. It is going to Donegal later to be returned back to the sea. (John Young)
The Spoonbill was at Islandhill, Strangford Lough along with 14 Little Egret. 2 Pinkfeet were with 38 Greylags in fields near Castle Espie (Gerard McGeehan).
The Ring-necked Duck was with 20 Tufted Duck at Lough Mourne (Joe Lamont).
The juvenile/first-winter Glossy Ibis was along the western shore of Lough Beg. The female/immature Smew was also present (David Steele).
An adult Mediterranean Gull was along the seafront at Whitehead (Cameron Moore).
A juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper was at Inch Lake in Donegal. (Irish Birding/David Hunter).
Thanks to Chris Easton for the picture of a Purple Sandpiper, to Christine Cassidy for the picture of the Sparrowhawk, to David Hunter for the pictures of the Whooper Swans and the White-rumped Sandpiper(left hand bird) and to Gareth Platt for the pictures of the Ring-billed Gull and the partial albino Jackdaw:
Portrush East Strand Car park had the Ring-billed Gull and a Mediterranean Gull. (Chris Easton)
15 whooper swans were on a stubble field at Ballyquintin, Co Down. (Keith Bennett)
RSPB Belfast WOW had 330 Teal, 100 + Lapwing, a Stonechat, 2 Little Egret, 1 Ruff, 1 Buzzard and 5 Gadwall (Derek Polley)
A Dipper was singing at Tempo Park, Co Fermanagh (Colin Bell)
A Kingfisher was seen along the Newry Canal just north of Newry this morning, A Water Rail was also heard. (Frank Carroll)
A seawatch from Bloody Foreland Co Donegal had 4 Leach's Storm-petrel, 13 Pomarine Skuas, 6 Arctic Skuas, 7 European Storm-petrels, 55 Great Northern Divers, 177 Great Skuas & 465 Sooty Shearwaters (Chris Ingram, Ralph Sheperd & Theo Campbell)
Thanks to David McCormick for this pic of first winter Black-headed Gulls at Kiltonga and Jason Bain for the Fieldfare in flight:
Eric Dempsey is giving a talk this evening, at 7:30 at the NIOC meeting at the Ulster Museum, Belfast. His 'Don't Die in Autumn' talk features extracts from his new and highly regarded book. Everyone is welcome.
Eric is also the author of a number of key books about birds and birding around Ireland and this promises to be a great talk.
A juvenile/1st winter Glossy Ibis and one of the Great White Egrets was in the south west corner of Lough Beg. (David Steele).
A Red Kite was seen from the M1, just south of Moira. (Richard Hunter).
An adult Mediterranean Gull was along Newcastle Promenade. (Leonard Charles).
A Ring-necked Duck was at Lough Mourne, Co Antrim and 8 Little Egret at 40 Acre Bay in Larne Lough (Joe Lamont).
25/30 Crossbill were in spruce at the entrance to Gosford Forest (Clifford Sharpe).
A Snow Bunting was at Ramore Head this evening. (Colin Guy).
The count of Lough Foyle produced a Greenland White-fronted Goose, 4 Pink-footed Geese, a Mediterranean Gull, 2 Slavonian Grebe, 7 Red-throated Diver and 17 Little Egret (Matthew Tickner, Gareth Bareham).
For anyone interested, a juvenile Pallid Harrier is at Annagh Marsh, Co Mayo for its second day.
4 Snow Bunting were at Knockmore, Co Fermanagh (Brad Robson)
A high count of over 550 Lesser Redpoll have been ringed on Copeland In the last month.
8 Greenland White-fronted Geese flew in at Ballintoy (Colin Guy)
The south-west corner of Lough Beg had a male Greeen-winged Teal, female Garganey and 2 juvenile Merlin. 27 Ruff were at Paddy's Dub (David Steele)
At Strangford Lough an Arctic Skua was off Killyleagh. On Thursday 2 Great White Egret were at Whiterock (Hugh Thurgate).
A day trip to Islay from Ballycastle today had Redwing, Whooper Swans, 14 Greenland Whitefronts, 1 Pink footed Goose, over 20,000 Barnacle geese, Hen Harriers and a Great Northern Diver (Margaret Adamson)
A Merlin was at Myroe (Christine Cassidy & Ray Brogan).
Late yesterday afternoon a Short-eared Owl was seen along the beach north of Ballywalter (martin McClenaghan, Ronnie Snoddy).
A high count of 15 Jay flew over a farm between Whitehead and Kilroot (Ian Beggs).
5 Whooper Swan were at Moira.
Yesterday 4 Mediterranean Gulls (2 adult and 2 2nd winter) were in Killough Harbour.
migrant Jay was at St John's Point. Also an adult Ring-billed Gull, 2 Ruff and 20 Greylag Geese were at Lurgangreen and a Spotted Redshank was at Dundalk Docks.
Thanks to Christine Cassidy for the picture of the Merlin and to Jason Bain for the pictures of the Stonechat and the Buzzard:
Yesterday morning (14 Oct) at St John’s Point, Razorbills were passing north at a rate of 1200/hour plus 6 Red-throated Divers (south), 10 Brent Geese (south), 10 Common Scoter, 1 Goldeneye, 1 Wigeon. Other evidence of visible migration included: 1,000 Starlings, 250 Skylarks, 20 Linnets, 20 Reed Buntings, 12 Tree Sparrows, 40 Lapwings, 4 Pied Wagtails, 1 Mistle Thrush, 3 Song Thrushes, 4 Great Tits, 10 Redpolls, 2 Greeenfinches, 20 Swallows, 50 Meadow Pipits, 1Snipe, 4 Stonechat. Also 3 Buzzards, 1 or 2 Sparrowhawks, 2 Merlins and 2 Kestrels (Chris and Tim Murphy)
A Buzzard that was seen on Rathlin Island yesterday had unusual colouration and a striking red tail with a tail band (Jim Wells / Gerry Bond). Any comments about this bird or similar birds elsewhere are welcome. The Buzzard appears to be a possible Steppe Buzzard, dark trailing edge to uniformly brownish upperwing and broad subterminal band on tail (Forsman The raptors of Europe and the Middle East) These feature appear to be shown well in the photograph, Steppe Buzzard appears in N and E Europe and is a long distant migrant, with winds coming from the east over the last week this would seem to give the bird more credence.
Thanks to Gerry Bond for the Buzzard pic below. More pics are on our bird pics blog:
9 Pink-footed Geese where at Castle Espie.(Stephen Maxwell) see pics below.
Another 5 Pink-footed Geese where at Reedy Flats, Lough Neagh. 5 Swallow where also seen. (James O'Neill) see pic below
A 1st winter Med. Gull was at Portrush east strand car-park.(Colin Guy) see pic below.
Our thanks to Stephen Maxwell for the two pics of the Pink - footed Geese and the Peregrine. Also thanks to Colin Guy for the 1st winter Med. Gull at Portrush and also to Jason Bain for the Hen Harrier attacking a Hooded Crow. Bottom pic is of the 5 Pink-footed Geese at Reedy Flats taken by James O'Neill.
A Yellow-browed Warbler was at Portstewart Strand/Bann Estuary this morning. There was also 1 Long-eared Owl, 2 Sparrowhawk, 6+ Redwing, c30 Light Bellied Brent and c65 Barnacle Geese. Yesterday a Merlin was present with c300 Lapwing, c12 Reed Bunting & c20 Chaffinch. (Richard Donaghey/John Clarke).
The Spoonbill was roosting on one of the Rocky islands off Castle Espie. 8 Pink-feet were also feeding in a stubble field. (Adam McClure).
This afternoon 1 Red Grouse and 18 Golden Plover were at Lendrum Wind Farm, Fivemiletown, Co Tyrone. (Colin Bell).
An adult Mediterranean Gull, 7 Little Egret, 17 Grey Heron, 9 Greenshank, 10 Brent Geese, 1 Shelduck and 2 Carrion Crow were in Killough Harbour. A 2nd winter Mediterranean Gull was in a field on the outskirts of Killough and 2 Wheatear were at Tyrella.
An adult argentatus Herring Gull was at Kinnegar Shore along with twelve late Sandwich Tern (Stuart McKee)
Thanks to Angus Kennedy for the picture of the Pink-footed Geese, to Mark Elliott for the picture of the Grey Wagtail and to Cameron Moore for the picture of the Grey Heron:
A second winter Mediterranean Gull was at Mill Quarter Bay in Co Down today and 14 Sandwich Terns (one a first year bird) were at nearby Kilclief Bay.
A Jack Snipe was at Blackwater Bridge north of Lough Fea.
On 6th a Whimbrel was at Sea Park (near Helens Bay)
A juvenile Gannet flew west along the south shore of Lough Neagh at Reedy Flat at 5pm this evening.
An adult Mediterranean Gull was just north of Pickie in Bangor (David McCleary).
2 Jay were along Knockagh Road at Woodburn (Billy Hamilton).
4 Wheatear were at Ramore Head in Portrush. (Stephen Maxwell).
Tonight at 8.20pm a Barn Owl flew across the Lower Ballinderry Road, Lisburn. (Tim Ryan).
An adult winter plumaged Yellow-legged Gull was resting on rocks 800m north-west of St John's Point Lighthouse at midday. There was also 1 Merlin, 2 Kestrel, 1 Buzzard, 50 Skylark and 3 Goldcrest.
Thanks to David for this picture of the Mediterranean Gull and to Stephen for the picture of the Wheatear.