Sunday, 30 January 2011

Bird News Sunday 30th January

A Curlew Sandpiper was at Tide Bank, Newtonards (C. Bell)

Here's a Tree Sparrow from our mysterious masked contributor

2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers were at an undisclosed site at Downpatrick

The Snow Goose was still near Portmore Lough with Greylags and Whoopers (W.Veale et al)
The 1stw male Ring Necked Duck was back at L.Cowey (K.Bennett)

2 male and 4 female / immature Goosanders were at Cushendun
127 Red Throated Divers flew into Belfast Lough past Whitehead this morning. This event has been recorded almost annually in recent years and begs the question wherte do they come from and why!
12 Red Throated Diver were also off Newcastle

2 Blackcap were at Islanmagee and a female Blackcap and a Brambling were playing hide and sek in a garden off the Lisburn Road in Belfast

2 Water Rail were at Oxford Island

Thanks to Andrew Poots for these photos of Tree Sparrows and Brambling in his garden.

2 Red Kites were at Ballylough outside Castlewellan (A. Crory and N. Snell) 6 Yellowhammer were at Ardilea.

A couple of the aforementioned Yellowhammers

The 5 Goosanders were still at Loughislandreavy, 2 Red Kites and a Common Buzzard were also present (D. and O. Hadrick) Rumours that this pair twitched a coffee shop in Castlewellan remain unconfimed

Another Red Kite was at Clough

A Red Kite was at Farranfad and another near Ballydugan c.1.00pm. 15 Whooper Swan were Magheralagan (W. McNamara)

2 Red Kites were at Ballydugan c.3pm (Nigel Snell)

Another Red Kite was at Moneyslane (C and T Murphy and K. Bennett). In fact there's been so many that we'll have to rename this day Red Kite Day and celebrate with some pics.

But before the pics some more bird news!

The adult Ring Billed Gull and 35 Whooper Swans were still at Portrush
A Red Throated Diver was off Magilligan. At the Myroe Levels, 600 Brent Geese, 80 Greylag and 400 Whooper Swans were on the Turf Lawn Fields.
A Peregrine was at the cliffs at Binnevenagh and finally 100 Linnet, 2 female Brambling and an adult Ring Billed Gull were at Donnybrewer. (Tom Jones)

Chris and Tim Murphy and sidekick Keith Bennet done a bird race today and had an amazing 114 species (which is more than i have seen all year!) Highlights included
350 Common Scoter, L Egret Murlough
6 Yellowhammer, 2 Stock Dove Ardilea
30 Twite, Tyrella
2 Sandwhich Tern, 2 Purple Sandpiper Portavogie
4 Slavonian Grebe Strangford Lough
They have proved that 120 a day is possible with a bit of luck!

Actually, those shots are rubbish - here's some decent ones from Nigel Snell. Have a look at Nigel's websites or we'll raise interest rates, fuel duty and VAT (you think we don't have the power to do that - just try us!).

For more info about RSPB Northern Irelands Red Kite project visit here:

....and just in case you were wondering Leonard Charles has seen 90 species this year so far (one more than Derek) - it's definitely going to be a record year.


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