Saturday, 23 March 2019

Inishmore RBF

Another quick trip out to Inishmore on 26th October to try to see a Red-backed Shrike that was found out there by Joe Proudfoot two days previously. Any shrike in Galway is a rare bird. The first Red-backed Shrike was "obtained"/killed hitting the light at Eearagh Island Lighthouse which is located just off the west side of Inishmore in Ocotber 1927. There are two records from Inishbofin both of which were found in September 2005 by Steve Dodgson. Another strangely underrecorded species here. Suffice to say I had no luck with my Red-backed Shrike search. Huge amounts of Inishmore are potentially suitable for a shrike, kilometres apon kilometres of stone walls and hectares and hectares of bramble and bracken patches.

I had time to check the Kilmurvy area and managed to pick up a Red-breasted Flycatcher in Kilmurvy Wood inside the walled garden. Most of the leaves from the trees on the island had now lost their leaves but in this sheltered little spot there were still a few leaved Sycamores present. Niall Keogh had found a Red-eyed Vireo in this very same spot just over week previously which hung around for a few days. This RBF gave quite good views considering they are normally secretive and fast moving a lot of the time. Ireland's first Taiga Flycatcher was only found a few days previously down in Cork. This is the eleventh Galway record and of those seven have been recorded on Inishmore. Thanks to Aonghus O'Donaill for the record information.









Sunday, 17 March 2019

Aughrusbeg Richard's Pipit

I was out at Aughrus Beg beside the inlet at Rossadillask on the 16th October my colleague Cameron Clotworthy to check up on a rather out of place Grey Seal pup that I had seen sat up on a rock in the inlet the previous day while carrying out an Irish Wetland Bird Survey. There was no sign of the pup but while walking along the shoreline I heard a Richard's Pipit calling at close quarters on two different occasions. I couldn't see the bird unfortunately.
I returned the next day and eventually managed to see it mostly in flight and just once well on the ground. It was extremely timid and generally wouldn't allow close approach when on the deck.
I managed to get some record flight shots and a few when it briefly landed on a bramble patch. Nearly all of these are fully cropped.
It was later seen by Eamon Larrissey and Aonghus O'Donaill on the following day. I don't think anyone else looked for it.
The only previous county record was a fly-over which Ciaran Cronin picked up over Nimmo's Pier on 29th October 2015. This was a long overdue county first. Odd how they haven't been picked up on Inishmore or Inishbofin to date.














Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Juvenile WRS's, Inishmore, October 2018.

Hugh Delaney picked up two juvenile White-rumped Sandpipers feeding on the storm beach at Loch Phort Chorrúch on Inishmore on 14th October. I was out on a day trip myself at the time and managed to get some shots. I had an adult here at the very same spot in September 2011. This is the first time two have shown up together in Galway. Both birds had started to moult a handful of the upper scapulars and one bird (individual one) had a distinct small bump on the upper mandible.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpipers.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpipers.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpipers.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpipers.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpipers.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpipers.
Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.
Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual one.
Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper - individual two.

Sunday, 10 March 2019

Adult White-rumped Sandpiper, Inner Mannin Bay, 20th September 2018.

A few record shots of a moulting adult White-rumped Sandpiper that I found in Inner Mannin Bay, Ballyconneely back on 20th September 2018. This is the third adult that I've found on this very same beach with the previous birds being on 29th September 2011 and on 8th August 2017. The last bird was a nice full summer bird. I haven't seen the species anywhere else on mainland Connemara for some reason. Four WRS were found in Galway during the Autumn of 2018 with a juvenile on Inishbofin on 8th October and two juveniles on Inishmore on 14th to 20th October. I have shots of the latter birds which I will post here shortly.

Moulting adult White-rumped Sandpiper.

Moulting adult White-rumped Sandpiper.

Moulting adult White-rumped Sandpiper.

Moulting adult White-rumped Sandpiper with Ringed Plover.

Moulting adult White-rumped Sandpiper.

Moulting adult White-rumped Sandpiper with juvenile Sanderling and Ringed  Plover.

Moulting adult White-rumped Sandpiper.