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Wildlife in and around the city of Bristol

www.landcaretrees.co.uk

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Bristol and Avon Bird

Sightings

Wildlife in the Forest of Dean

Bob Bushell’s Wildlife
Photography

27/05/19 Leighton Moss RSPB

We had another quick visit to Leighton Moss RSPB on our way back to Bristol. When we arrived we saw a Male Bullfinch on the feeder by the Visitor Centre. The Female was also present as well. We went up to the Skytower & had a very showy Willow Warbler in the tree. A few Common Swifts, House Martins & Barn Swallows were swooping down on flying insects. By the feeders I photographed a little Wren singing his heart out. Afterwards, we made tracks & headed back south as we still had about 5 hours to go.

It had been a brilliant holiday and I certainly want to go again in the future.

Willow Warbler [Adult]

Bullfinch [Male]

Willow Warbler [Adult]

Wren [Male]

24/05/19 Loch Eynort

We headed back down to Loch Eynort. We saw plenty of Common  & Grey Seals. Another Hebridean Wren showed briefly on a branch. Nearby was a Stonechat Family foraging on the rocks. We had another spetacular sighting of a Male Hen Harrier hunting over the moor in South Uist. Also near the coast were Oystercatchers, Ringed Plovers, Red-breasted Mergansers & Common Teal. Near Loch Druidibeag was a lone Whooper Swan. We drove down along the road to Grimsay. We saw 2 Whimbrel on the rock, before flying out of sight. Near Fraoch-Eilean, we saw 2 Common Redshanks perched on the fence posts & calling nervously because of the Common Buzzard nearby. It eventually flew off after being mobbed by the Lapwings. The Common Redshanks were protecting their own hatched chick. A Male Northern Wheatear was feeding young nearby. We headed back to Benbecula, to have a look at the Red-necked Phalaropes by the roadside loch. When we got back to the cottage, Me & Dad walked down to the beach for the final time on this holiday. A Male Ringed Plover was displaying to the Female, but clearly not instrested. A Few Sanderlings were still about foraging. Dunlin were also mixed in with the flock.

Hen Harrier [Male]

Hebridean Wren

Stonechat [Female]

Hen Harrier [Male]

Ringed Plover [Summer]

Red-breasted Mergansers

Whooper San [Adult]

Eurasian Whimbrel  

Common Redshank [Summer & Juvenile]

Lapwing [Female]

Sanderlings [Summer]

High tide from the cottage

23/05/19 Benbecula, Committee Rd & Balranald RSPB

We saw 2 Red-necked Phalaropes at a roadside loch that morning at Benbecula. We headed along the Committee Road, where we saw Ringed Plovers Stonechat, Arctic Skuas, Male Hen Harrier & Common Buzzard. We went back to Balranald RSPB to get more photos of the Corncrakes, without too much sun causing the light to be harsh. The Male Corncrake was still showing well & calling by the Visitor Centre mid-afternoon. A Corn Bunting was singing on top of a hay bail. Corncrakes are Summer Visitors to Northern Scotland from Africa & have declined over much of Britain. The Hebrides is their last major stronghold & May is an excellent time to see them, before the grass gets too tall. We went along the minor road near Carnach, where saw a flock of 5 Whooper Swans & a leusitic Common Gull at a roadside loch. We then headed along the side of Loch Euphoirt & saw a couple of Red Deer near Sidinish. We had a cup of coffee & scanned the mountains for Eagles. We saw some more Red Deer on the way back through. We had a small flock of Twite between Sidinish & Loch Euphort, which landed on the fence briefly before feeding in the field. A Female Northern Wheatear was busy feeding youngsters. In the late afternoon we went Langais & saw a Male Hen Harrier & White-tailed Eagle. Afterwards we went back to Benbecula.

Arctic Skua [Dark & Pale Morphs]

Ringed Plover [Summer]

Stonechat [Male]  

Arctic Skua [Dark Morph]

Corncrake

Whooper Swan [Adults]

Common Gull [Adult-White Morph]

Corncrake

Corncrake

Red Deer [Males]

Twite

Hen Harrier [Male]

White-tailed Eagle [Adult]

White-tailed Eagle [Adult]

Loch Euphort, North Uist

22/05/19 Loch Eynort & Loch Sgioport

We went back to South Uist at Loch Eynort. Me & Dad walked along the path towards the other end of the loch. We saw 3 Red-throated Divers doing a bit of displaying. A Great Northern Diver was also present & just coming into Summer Plumage. An Otter swam up and came ashore with a fish. We watched for a while as it ate its supper and then it slipped back into the water. A couple of Red-breasted Mergansers were in the little channel further down the loch. A Common Sandpiper perched on one of the stones. At Loch Sgioport, a Common Gull flew past. A Butterwort & Lousewort were in full flower. We went back to Loch Druidibeag RSPB & managed to see both White-tailed & Golden Eagles very distantly. There was a bit of disbute between the Golden & White-tailed Eagles. A Stonechat perched on a branch close to the road. We headed back to Benbecula after an excellent day.

Red-throated Divers [Displaying Adults]

Red-throated Diver [Summer]

Red-throated Diver [Summer]

Great Northern Diver [Moulting Adult]

Otter

Common Butterwort

Red-breasted Merganser [Male]

Stonechat [Male]

Otter

Eriskay Ferry Terminal

Eriskay

21/05/19 Benbecula, Berneray, Committee Rd & Balranald RSPB

We started the day with a sighting of 2 Red-necked Phalaropes by the roadside in excellent morning sunlight. We headed northwards to the Isle of Berernary, where the ferry goes to Lewis & Harris. We saw a Male Cuckoo, Ringed Plovers, Dunlin, Rock Doves & Skylark. We went back along the Committee Road & had a wonderful view of a Short-eared Owl perched on the fence post, before flying off. We spent most of the day exploring the area. In the early evening, we popped back to Balranald RSPB to look for the Corncrakes to see if they were showing better. We eventually managed to see a pair of Corncrakes that showed very well by the visitor centre. Afterwards we headed back to Benbecula.

Red-necked Phalarope [Female & Male]

Red-necked Phalrope [Female]

Common Cuckoo [Male]

Short-eared Owl [Adult]

Skylark [Adult]

Short-eared Owl [Adult]

Corncrakes

Committee Road, North Uist

Balranald

Isle of Berernary

Loch Sgioport, Loch Druidibeag RSPB & Loch Eynort 20/05/19

We headed down to South Uist to the RSPB reserve at Loch Druidibeag to look for Eagles & Divers. We didn't see any, but we saw Eriskay Ponies near Loch Sgioport including one Foal. Me & Dad walked to the pier at the end of the road. I managed  to a see a Hebridean Wren. A Shag was swimming below the viewpoint and a Greylag Goose & Red-breasted Mergansers flew past. A Meadow Pipit perched on the fence post. We saw a Female Hen Harrier fly over the road.

We on our way to Loch Eynort, when suddenly a Male Hen Harrier flew over. We managed to see it on a side road & it landed briefly, before flying away. We also saw a Red-throated Diver on a roadside loch.

We went to the point at Ruba Aird a' Mhuile, to see if there were any Skuas passing through. We had a lovely Lapwing. Loads of Common Gulls & Arctic Terns were on the beach. Redshanks were flying overhead protecting their newly hatched chick. We had lunch there, before heading off to Loch Eynort. A Male Cuckoo sat up on a wire & calling. There were a few Common Seals laid out on the rocks. We saw 2 Otters briefly in the late afternoon.

We headed back to Benbecula & saw another Common Redshank perched on a fence post. A Common Snipe was doing it's drumming display. We saw it perched on a fence post, but was not calling. We managed to see at least 3 Red-necked Phalaropes on a roadside loch in the late afternoon sunshine. Back at the cottage we saw Dunlin, Turnstone, Common Eiders & a Rock Pipit all showed by the bank.

Meadow Pipit [Adult]

Red-throated Diver [Summer]

Eriskay Ponies [Female Top, Foal Bottom]

Shag [Summer]

Red-throated Diver [Summer]

Lapwing [Summer]

Common Gull [Summer]

Common Redshank [Summer]

Common Redshank [Juvenile]

Common Seal

Common Snipe

Common Snipe in drumming mode

Common Eider [Male[

Common Eider [Female]

Turnstone [Summer]

Common Eider [Female]

Common Redshank [Summer]

Red-necked Phalaropes [Females & Male]

Loch Druidibeag RSPB

Ruba Aird a’Mhuile Point

Benbecula Sunset

Balranald RSPB, Committee Rd & Benbecula 19/05/19

We headed up to North Uist to the RSPB Reserve at Balranald to look for Corncrakes. We saw a Lapwing Chick in the field along the entrance road and a Common Redshank perched on a fence post. There were plenty of Hebridean Starlings around the reserve. A Skylark was collecting food for it's chicks. I had a brief view of a Corncrake when it popped its head up, before it disappeared into the long grass. Still, had a couple of Corn Buntings about the reserve. We gave up on the Corncrake for the day. We heard them all around, but difficult to pin point where they are calling from & it can be quite frustrating.

We headed up further north to Malacleit where we saw Red-breasted Merganser, including a lone Female in the channel. We headed up the Committee Road & had a bonus sighting of a White-tailed Eagle. Also had a Short-eared Owl hunting nearby. A Male Common Cuckoo was being chased by a Meadow Pipit. We popped down to Ardivachar, where we had a tip off by somebody at Balranald RSPB of a showy Corncrake. Sadly we didn't hear it calling, let alone see it. We did however have some lovely Turnstones in full Breeding Plumage. No prizes for guessing why these are often refered to as Ruddy Turnstones when you see them like this. Saw loads of Great Northern Divers on the coast & a pair of Breeding Sanderling flew past. A couple of Linnets were feeding on the ground.

When got back to the cottage at Benbecula, Me & Dad went to the beach that evening. There were still a few Sanderlings foraging along. Also Common Eiders, Black-headed Gulls & Common Gulls.

Skylark [Adult]

Common Redshank [Summer]

Lapwing [Chick]

Hebridean Starling [Summer]

Skylark [Adult]

Corn Bunting

Corncrake

White-tailed Eagle [Adult]

White-tailed Eagle [Adult]

Red-breasted Merganser [Female]

Red-breasted Merganser [Female]

Common Cuckoo [Male]

Turnstone [Summer]

Turnstone [Summer]

Sanderling [Summer Pair]

Curlew [Adult]

Sanderling [Summer]

Common Gull [Summer]

Black-headed Gull [Summer]

Sanderling [Summer]

Sanderling [Summer]

Sanderling [Summer]

Common Eider [1st Summer Male]

Common Eider [Pair]

Sanderling [Summer Pair]

Leighton Moss RSPB
16/05/19

We had a quick to visit to Leighton Moss RSPB on our way to Scotland. We headed down to the Causeway Hide to see what was there. A Common Blue Damselfly was resting on the path and a pair of Little Grebes swam past in front of the hide. A Male Pied Wagtail perched on a log. Loads of Yellow Flag Iris were in full flower. A few Common Pochards were there, they must have stayed around to breed. We didn’t have long to look around as the motorway had been very busy and time was getting on, so we headed up to the B&B at Gretna, just over the borders, for the night.

Lochwinnoch RSPB & Skye
17/05/19  

We popped into Loch Winnoch RSPB to look around on the way north, as we had never been there. House Sparrow & other garden birds were feeding around the feeders. We saw  Sedge Warblers, Tufted Ducks, Mallard, Canada Goose & other wildfowl. Again, we didn’t have long as we still had a long way to go to get to our next B&B on the Isle of Skye. We stopped & had a quick look at Eilean Donan Castle on the way to the Kyle of Lochalsh. After our tea in Lochalsh, we travelled over the Skye Bridge heading to the B&B in Tarskavaig. At a roadside loch, there was a Black-throated Diver together with a pair of Red-throated Divers, which were good to see.

Outer Hebrides
 16th-27th May 2019

Little Grebe [Summer]

Little Grebe [Summer Pair]

Pied Wagtail [Male]

Common Pochard [Male]


Common Pochard [Male]

Black-throated Diver [Summer]

Sedge Warbler [Adult]

Black-throated Diver [Summer]

Eilean Donan Castle

Skye & Benbecula
18/05/19

We started the day at the roadside loch with the Black-throated Diver, which was still present & showing well. As the ferry was not until 14:30, we took our time driving through the spectacular scenery. We stopped briefly at Portree, before heading to Uig.

In the harbour at Uig, we saw a Hooded Crow foraging amongst the seaweed. We then boarded the ferry to Lochmaddy. On the crossing over we saw Gannets, Puffins, Common Guillemots, Razorbill, Black Guillemots, Arctic Skua chasing a Tern, Great Skua & Kittiwakes.

After arriving at the ferry terminal, we drove straight down to the Isle of Benbecula, where we were staying for the week. It was a lovely cottage overlooking the bay and there were lots of waders on the beach, so Me & Dad went down to have a closer look at them. The birds we saw were Turnstones, Dunlin, Ringed Plovers, Oystercatchers, Sanderlings, Common Redshanks & Common Gulls. It was lovely to see the waders in their stunning breeding plumage, especially the Sanderlings. It was just the beginning.

Black-throated Diver [Summer]

Hooded Crow [Adult]

Gannet [Adult]

Arctic Skua chasing a Tern

Oystercatcher [Summer]

Common Gull [Summer]

Ringed Plover [Summer]

Sanderling & Dunlin [Summer]

Sanderling [Summer]

Sanderling [Summer]

Sanderlings, Dunlin & Ringed Plovers

Out cottage for the week Benbecula

Outer Hebrides

25/05/19 Benbecula & Lochmaddy

We bid our farewell to the Outer Hebrides & to the lovely Red-necked Phalaropes at the roadside loch. The weather was absolutely appaling with heavy downpours all day. We spent most of the day at Lochmaddy, awaiting for the ferry. We had a very long wait, as the ferry was not due til 16:00. We boarded the ferry back for the crossing to Uig on the Isle of Skye. We had upper at Broadford, before heading back to the B&B at Tarskavaig for the night.

Red-necked Phalaropes fighting

26/05/19 Ferry to Mallaig, The Jacobite & Ardgour

The weather was still awful with heavy rain. We had a quick look for the Black-throated Diver that morning, but no sign. We went to Armadale to catch the ferry to Mallaig. On the crossing over we saw Kittiwakes & Manx Shearwaters. We popped to Arisaig station to see The Jacobite go through. The train was being hauled by 45407 The Lancashire Fusilier & stopped briefly to obtain the token before continuing to Mallaig. We had a quick for the long staying Male Black Duck at Strontian, but no sign of it due to high water. (We found out later that it had moved further upstream). We caught our final ferry from Ardgour to Corran. We saw the Black Guillemots nesting in the jetty. Afterwards, we had a long drive to the B&B in Gretna.

45407 The Lancashire Fusilier at Arisaig