Friday, 17 February 2017

The St Cyrus Ravens and more

My yearly visit to St Cyrus today was a bit earlier than most years due to the appearance of the sun and timing my visit for the morning gave me my best option for helpful light. On my way homeward I dropped in at Montrose, the Basin Centre and Elliot.

Note, the Ravens and Peregrines are viewed from the public path please don't approach and disturb schedule one birds at any time but especially as the breeding season is starting.

The Montrose Basin leucistic Oystercatcher, for video click here  (the 60fps version didn't play well on YouTube so this is the 25fps version)


Raven with nest material


Again


Both of the courting pair


Peregrine


Peregrine on the plucking ledge


Just finished chasing a Buzzard


I didn't stay until a Water Rail showed in the open at Montrose SWT so these two photos will do just now





At one point these Knot were performing like a Starling murmuration, note the lead bird on the extreme right is a Black-tailed Godwit


The leucistic Oystercatcher at Montrose Harbour


Also at the harbour, a Cormorant drip drying


Also there this Curlew which had just smashed up this crab


Grey Heron, upstream of the road bridge at Montrose


Same Heron


Ringed Plover and Dunlin at Elliot, by now the cloud had arrived


Coots fighting on a gloomy day at Keptie Pond earlier this week, a sign of spring??


The only female Goosander in company with eight males at Keptie Pond


Moorhen


Tufted Duck


Ever wondered why we have a mini red lighthouse by the roadside at Elliot, this explains it



Thursday, 16 February 2017

Auchmithie Stonechats, Fulmars and Maw Skelly

A wee bit more light today and a trip to Auchmithie where 36 Fulmars were on the cliff ledges and on my way home I took a few late afternoon photos in light where I shouldn't have bothered but at least I learned the limits of my new lens.


Happy families in Fulmar town


Difficult to say which two are the pair and which is the infiltrator


Maw Skelly just north of Auchmithie Harbour, if I'd manged to get a bit more of the rock I think you'd see what I saw, that the rock looks like an old woman, the fisher wives that I can remember from my childhood


A singing Robin at Auchmithie


Female Stonechat at Auchmithie, I can't recall seeing Stonechats there before. I later found the male on the beach below catching flies


Late afternoon photos of the Curlews at Victoria Park, Arbroath as they left the beach to go inland as the tide rose





This Eider drake was photographed during the cold, grim and windy weather lately and I'm surprised by the quality given the circumstances


I can't say for sure but I think the injury on this Feral Pigeon's neck looks like the work of a Sparrowhawk. Close inspection of the original photo shows two holes nearer the head and a shallower hole and scrape at the other end of the wound. It seems to have survived but I may yet find it dead in the garden


Saw this guy digging up Victoria Park repeatedly as he used his metal detector, at the same time workers were building a fence to stop local drivers driving on the same grass. Don't assume it's the youth driving and parking on the grass though, most culprits were older people walking dogs or having picnics. Maybe their legs don't work!