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On the 8th January: 


Overnight at John's mothers cottage at Achininver, near the north coast, more a croft than cottage with water collected from the burn in the garden. 

A short distance from the cottage, on the coast, we saw lots of Shags, 2 Fulmars, several Gannets, Oytercatchers and Curlews, also around 30 Rock Doves, these we considered pure enough to count as a species, so a new bird for us.

Leaving Achininver our first stop was Talmine Bay where there were Eider, Red-breasted Merganser, only 2 Long-tailed Ducks, 3 Great Northern Divers, a Black-throated Diver and 6 fly-over Ravens.

We continued to the Kyle of Tongue, where there were many more birds, including Dunlin, Ringed Plover, 2 Knot, Turnstone, Redshank and around 20 Bar-tailed Godwits, also 3 Great Northern Divers, one of which was calling repeatedly, its sound echoing around the loch. Our last stop was at Port Vasco where we added Kittiwake and Rock Pipit to the days list.


The last day of the France / Corsica trip, at Lac de la foret d'Orient only saw 2 Willow Tits and a Hawfinch. 


On the Otago Peninsula, South Island New Zealand, new birds were Rifleman, Yellow-eyed Penguin and New Zealand Pigeon. 















Photo: Immature Red-billed Gull.


A trip to Slimbridge, where, due to the wet weather, many fields were flooded and there were thousands of birds. There were high numbers of waders with around 3000 Lapwing, 3000+ Golden Plover, 200+ Dunlin, a Little Stint and 19 Ruff of note, large numbers of duck including 700+ Wigeon and 220 Pintail, with 2 female Scaup seen on the Rushy Pool, also there were 117 Russian White-fronted Geese and 5 Greenland. In the fields and on the foreshore were 125 Bewick's Swans, with them on the 'Dumbles' were 2 Whooper Swans. I saw one Peregrine, but there was probably at least another 1 or 2, and on the way out I heard a Cetti's Warbler but didn't see it.


A visit to St Anne's Church in Oldland, Bristol on a grey, misty day, where in the trees around the church were 3 Hawfinches.


Went to Slimbridge this morning to see a Yellow-browed Warbler, which was found yesterday and reported earlier this morning, but when I arrived at the Otter pen learned that the bird had flown into a panel of the glass surround and dropped into the water, it wasn't seen again! Then went to try and see the Jack Snipe, it was hidden in the cropped reed/sedge, only its eye and part of its head visible, but then it stood up and began bobbing and feeding, coming out into the open for the next half an hour. Then a quick look from the other hides along the Holden Walkway seeing lots of Teal, Wigeon and Pintails, c100 Bewick's swans, 100's of Lapwing and Golden Plovers, 300+ Dunlin, 25 Off, 30+ Snipe, 6 Redshank and 3 Cranes. From the Willow Hide there was a Water Rail, probably two.


Jack Snipe.

Water Rail.

Jack Snipe 190108-05, Slimbridge.jpg
Jack Snipe 190108-11, Slimbridge.jpg
Jack Snipe 190108-13, Slimbridge.jpg
Jack Snipe 190108-16a, Slimbridge.jpg
Water Rail 190108-01, Slimbridge.jpg

More photos here.



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