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Some Lewis and North Uist sightings.

What's around? Share your latest wildlife and nature sightings.
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BrianR
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Some Lewis and North Uist sightings.

Post by BrianR » 03 Apr 2016, 22:05

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Not that bothered when dived at by gulls!
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Opposite the RSPB visitor centre.
In Stornoway Bob mentions a 1st-winter Glaucous Gull in Stornoway Harbour while eight Siskins and a couple of Great Tits were in his Willowglen Garden. Great Tits first bred in Stornoway Woods in the early 1960s but the small population had died out by the late 1990s. After quite a gap bred again in 2013 and I think subsequently.

In the Ness area on Thursday a flock of at least 350 unidentified geese came from The Minch and continued out to sea to NW and later a herd of 16 Whooper Swans passed through on a similar flight-path. The ♂ Green-winged Teal seemingly paired with a ♀ Teal was still present in front of the Loch Stiapavat hide and several flocks of Redwings were seen flying over Europie and NW towards the Butt of Lewis. The continuous rain and SW gale of the next day brought down some migrants with a flock of 26 Greenland White-fronted Geese on the machair near the Europie cemetery, three Shelduck on Loch Stiapavat and at least 100 Redwings between Europie and Lionel. Yesterday Tony recorded two Greenland White-fronts at Loch Stiapavat along with two 1st-winter Iceland Gulls and a Water Rail, at the Butt of Lewis 18 Greylag Geese flew NW close in at the lighthouse, 28 Pink-footed Geese came in from E and came down in fields and a 1st-winter Glaucous Gull was on the stacks by the lighthouse. In the afternoon at Skigersta two Snow Buntings were on the cliff top while two White-billed Divers were together offshore in the evenin.


On North Uist the Gyrfalcon continues to attract a large number of admirers and has been feeding on carcasses of Mute Swans (line casualties). Jamie tells me he has been in contact with the Electricity people so hopefully there will some warning discs fitted to the lines sometime. Anyway it has afforded some excellent photo opportunities as the bird has been quite approachable and there have been some amazing images posted on other sites. Since the 30th March it has been quaranteed in the vicinity of Loch na Reivil at Hougharry. If not feeding spends its time perched on posts the far side of the loch from the road. In fact yesterday was on one from 09.00 hours and had not appeared to have moved as on the same post 8 hours later.

The Great White Egret is usually at the west end of Loch nam Feithean but it does fly around occasionally and on the 1st was in the wet area opposite the RSPB visitor centre. Also on the Reserve a Glaucous Gull is still around, there have been a few Greenland White-fronted Geese and a ♂ Snow Bunting. A small number of Oystercatchers, Turnstones and Purple Sandpipers were on the move N this morning.

Whooper Swans continue to use the flight-path through the bay at Bayhead with René clocking up 128 between 09.39 and 09.46 hours yesterday. Wheatears have been seen at a number of places and a Chiffchaff was in a Claddach-vallay garden.

BrianR
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Re: Some Lewis and North Uist sightings.

Post by BrianR » 05 Apr 2016, 20:04

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The Gyrfalcon at Loch nam Feithean.
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Greenland Wheatear.
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White-billed Diver - Tony Marr.
Tony reports a quiet day yesterday at Ness: at the Butt of Lewis there was a Great Skua, a Wheatear and a single Snow Bunting, at Port of Ness the first Chiffchaff while in the afternoon there were three White-billed Divers off Skigersta (also seen by Bob Wemyss).

Some sightings for North Uist for yesterday and today: a flock of 23 Whooper Swans flew N over Carinish, the Great White Egret and Gyrfalcon were still present at the same sites that both have frequented recently (the Gyrfalcon briefly left the Loch na Reivil area for Loch nam Feithean yesterday afternoon), a 1st-winter Glaucous Gull is still around and nine Snow Buntings were at Aird an Rùnair (one ♂ with wings spread back and displaying large white rump). Also a late Jack Snipe was flushed from near Rubha nan Ròn (Carinish).
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♂ Snow Bunting (small flock surprisingly difficult to pick out on the ground in this habitat)

BrianR
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Re: Some Lewis and North Uist sightings.

Post by BrianR » 09 Apr 2016, 21:30

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Iceland Gull 8_4.jpeg
Some news for yesterday for Ness from Tony: 'the calm overnight weather induced a large exodus of geese heading towards Iceland in the morning, all coming up through The Minch from the SE and heading off out to sea to NW. In a 8 hour watch at the Butt of Lewis (07.20 to 15.20 hours) 800 Pink-feet passed (three flocks) and 75 Greylags (flocks of 65 and 10) as well as 2,520 grey geese (ten flocks) that were too distant to identify. A herd of 40 Whooper Swans passed over in the same direction at 10.45 hours. Also present was an Iceland Gull and a ♂ Snow Bunting almost in complete summer plumage (photos of both attached)'. Today an Iceland Gull flew N past Port of Ness while perhaps the same ♂ Snow Bunting had been joined by two ♀'s.

On North Uist the Gyrfalcon is becoming a bit more elusive but I believe it was seen this morning. During a WeBS count at Loch Paible 170 Greenland White-fronted Geese flew N along with 158 Barnacle Geese between 12.00 and 12.38 hours. A 1st-winter Iceland Gull was present at the loch. The Great White Egret at Loch nam Feithean has now been present for 11 days.

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Re: Some Lewis and North Uist sightings.

Post by BrianR » 09 May 2016, 21:17

For last few days 7th-9th May.

From Tony for 7th/8th: 'there was something of a clear-out overnight 6th/7th, with clear skies and calm conditions and a strengthening NE wind on the 7th. The only new migrants were a couple of Collared Doves (first of the spring here) while a flock of 20 Pink-footed Geese appeared on the machair at Five Penny in the afternoon. A 1st-winter Glaucous Gull was at Port Sto also in the afternoon. New arrivals yesterday in the strong E wind, fog and drizzle were a ♂ Pintail on Loch Stiapavat, a House Martin at Europie and ♂ Redstart in a greenhouse in Five Penny (found and released by Peter Inger - photo attached).'

On North Uist good numbers of Dunlin are passing through for example about 1,200 at Loch Paible on 7th and other migrants included 50 Whimbrel flying N at Aird an Rùnair yesterday afternoon (Speyside Wildlife). Of gulls single Iceland and Glaucous are still around as is also the Glaucous x Herring hybrid. A glorious hot and sunny day today (not usually like this in May!) and migrants reported included a pair of Garganey, a Ruff, a Lesser Whitethroat (unusually among the rocks at Aird an Rùnair) and a Tree Sparrow. Also Corncrakes were performing well and giving good views to many visitors.
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