Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Late September Seatrack Update

The last Seatrack Target Weekend (17th/18th Sept) coincided nicely with a mass movement of Sabine's Gulls, Arctic Terns, Long-tailed Skuas & Sooty Shearwaters along the west coast, particularly from The Bridges of Ross & Dursey Island. A smattering of scarcities were still recorded from vantage points along the North, South & East coast however, with a late Cory's Shearwater from Wicklow Head topping the bill.

The next Seatrack survey takes places this weekend 1st/2nd Oct. We're now moving away from the traditional seawatching period but given the right conditions, good numbers of skuas & Leach's Petrels can be expected along with an increase in the number of auks, seaduck & divers. Saying that, the forecast for the weekend looks rather settled so the draw of checking gardens & bushes on headlands might take precedence over seawatching for some! If you're interested in taking part in a Seatrack survey then e-mail Niall Keogh at

Location: Fanad Head, Co. Donegal
Date: 18th September 2011
Time: 08:10-10:10
Weather: F5-6 N-NW, dry with good visibility.
Observer(s): Chris Ingram.

Balearic Shearwater: 1 W
Sooty Shearwater: 1 W
Manx Shearwater: 15 W
Leach's Petrel: 2 W
Great Skua (Bonxie): 5 W
Great Northern Diver: 6 W & 1 E
Fulmar: 13 W
Kittiwake: 3 W
Razorbill: 68 W
Auk sp: 99 W

Location: Brownstown Head, Co. Waterford.
Date: 18th September 2011
Time: 07:55-09:55 & 10:00-11:00
Weather: 4-5 NW, vis excellent to moderate, occasional drizzle.
Observer(s): Jonathan Bulfin & Paul Walsh.

Balearic Shearwater: 3 W
Manx Shearwater: 1 E, 2 W
Gannet: 220 E & 405 W
Common Scoter: 4 E & 8 W
Wigeon: 6 W
Dunlin: 27 E
Great Skua: 1 W
Arctic Skua: 2 W
Kittiwake: 5 E & 85 W
Sandwich Tern: 38 E & 183 W
Arctic Tern: 3 W
Common/Arctic Tern: 2 E & 22 W
Razorbill: 14 W
Guillemot: 4 W
Large auk sp: 2 E & 98 W

Manx almost outnumbered by Balearics! - including 2 very pale-below birds.
Dozens of Swallows also passing W over sea.

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Seatrack @ Inishbofin

An update on some September seawatching by Anthony McGeehan from Inishbofin, Co. Galway. As with many other west coast seawatching sites at the time, good numbers of Sooty Shearwaters & some Long-tailed Skuas were noted.

Date: 5th September 2011
Time: 08:30-12:00 & 16:15-18:30
Weather: F6-8 W
Observer(s): Anthony McGeehan

Great Shearwater: 3
Sooty Shearwater: 600 (therefore 1,000+ for the whole day)
Manx Shearwater: 2,103
Leach's Petrel: 3
Storm Petrel: 41
Grey Phalarope: 1
Great Skua (Bonxie): 27
Pomarine Skua: 2
Arctic Skua: 3
Long-tailed Skua: 2 adults
Sabine's Gull: 3 adults
Arctic Tern: 24
Puffin: 63
Fulmar: 198
Gannet: 185
Kittiwake: 14
Guillemot: 77
Razorbill: 9

Date: 6th September 2011
Time: 08:30-11:00
Observer(s): Anthony McGeehan

Great Shearwater: 1
Sooty Shearwater: 236
Manx Shearwater: 354
Leach's Petrel: 3
Storm Petrel: 23
Great Skua (Bonxie): 11
Arctic Skua: 1
Sabine's Gull: 2 adults
Arctic Tern: 21 (6 juvs)

Common Dolphin: c.20

Date: 12th September 2011
Time: 09:45-13:00
Weather: F9 SW
Observer(s): Anthony McGeehan

Balearic Shearwater: 1
Sooty Shearwater: 340
Manx Shearwater: 560
Leach's Petrel: 
Storm Petrel: 30
Great Skua (Bonxie): 40
Long-tailed Skua: 3 adults (including one seen on way back from seawatch!)
Puffin: 6
Fulmar: 75
Gannet: 485
Kittiwake: None!
Guillemot: 15
Razorbill: 7

Leatherback Turtle: 1

Date: 13th September 2011
Time: 08:30-11:00
Weather: F7- W-SW
Observer(s): Anthony McGeehan

Sooty Shearwater: 63
Manx Shearwater: 209
Leach's Petrel: 5
Grey Phalarope: 1
Great Skua (Bonxie): 33
Long-tailed Skua: 4 (3 juvs) 
Sabine's Gull: 2 juvs
Arctic Tern: 9
Puffin: 50
Fulmar: 267
Gannet: 465
Kittiwake: 1
Auk sp: 23

Lapland Bunting: 4 in off the sea with 3 on the head itself

Sabine's Gull (Anthony McGeehan)

Monday, 26 September 2011

Seatrack @ Dursey Island

An update on some September seawatching by Derek & Joanna Scott from Dursey Island, Co. Cork. The season has been going pretty well for the guys so far with some nice movements of Sooty Shearwatears & a few treats like Great Shearwater, Long-tailed Skua & Sabine's Gull.

"Herewith the results of our three-hour sea-watches from the tip of Dursey Island on 10th & 17th  September. A south-westerly 6-7 and overcast conditions on 10th produced a good sea-watch by Dursey standards but the sea-watch yesterday (17th) – in a strong north-westerly after a week of westerlies – was outstanding."

Date: 10th September 2011
Time: 08:10-11:40
Weather: F6-7 SW, dry & very good visibility.
Observer(s): Derek A. Scott & Joanna E. Scott.

Great Shearwater: 1 South
Balearic Shearwater: 1 S
Sooty Shearwater: 209 S, 1 North & 100 Milling
Manx Shearwater: 228 S, 1 N & 75 M
Storm Petrel: 21 S
Great Skua (Bonxie): 1 S
Pomarine Skua: 1 S
Arctic Skua: 1 S
Sandwich Tern: 6 S
Common Tern: 7 S
Arctic Tern: 95 S
'Commic' Tern: 13 S
Common Scoter: 2 N
Fulmar: 200 M
Gannet: 2,000 M
Kittiwake: 8 S, 10 N & 4 M
Auk sp: 22 S & 50 M

Common Dolphin: 6
Harbour Porpoise: 5

Date: 17th September 2011 (Seatrack Target Weekend Survey)
Time: 07:30-11:00
Weather: F5-6 NW, one heavy shower & very good visibility.
Observer(s): Derek A. Scott & Joanna E. Scott.

Sooty Shearwater: 1,670 N & 3 S
Manx Shearwater: 46 N
Grey Phalarope: 7 N
Great Skua (Bonxie): 17 N & 5 S
Pomarine Skua: 2 immatures N
Arctic Skua: 2 N & 1 S
Sabine's Gull: 33 N (mostly adults)
Arctic Tern: 875 N
Kittiwake: 52 N & 1 S
Auk sp: 847 N

Mine Whale: 1
Harbour Porpoise: 20

"Most of the terns were pretty far out in large flocks battling northwest into a strong headwind. All that we could see well were Arctic Terns, and I guess that the vast majority, if not all, were Arctic."

"We have been doing sea-watches during the week as well, occasionally from the tip but also from the veranda of our house, which faces due south. Sea-watching from our house is OK in westerly and north-westerly winds, when birds are tracking WNW from the Mizen Head to the tip of Dursey, but the birds are pretty far out and we do not pick up birds heading south or south-west off the tip of Dursey. Today (18th Sept) I put in 3.5 hours (07:30 – 11:00), sitting in the door of our house with my scope wracked up to x60, and recorded the following:"

Sooty Shearwater: 1,158
Manx Shearwater: 6
Great Skua (Bonxie): 14
Arctic Skua: 1
Long-tailed Skua: 1
Sabine's Gull: 7
Arctic Tern: 124
Red-throated Diver: 1

"I guess there would have been a lot more off the tip, but it would have been pretty unpleasant out there, in a near gale from the north-west with heavy squally showers."

Monday, 19 September 2011

Bridges of Ross 19th Sept 2011

Time: 07:25-10:25
Weather: F3-4 W-NW, warm with heavy mist & poor visibility.
Observer(s): Niall T. Keogh & Noel Keogh.

Sooty Shearwater: 2
Storm Petrel: 20
Grey Phalarope: 8
Great Skua (Bonxie): 11
Arctic Skua: 9
Long-tailed Skua: 4 (1 adult & 3 juveniles) 
Sabine's Gull: 49 (13 adults & 36 juveniles)
Little Gull: 2 juv/1st-w
Black Tern: 2 juvs
Sandwich Tern: 23
Arctic Tern: 75
Puffin: 2
Common Scoter: 12
Red-throated Diver: 3
Bar-tailed Godwit: 3

Heavy mist made viewing extremely difficult beyond a few hundred meters. Thankfully most of the skuas & Sab's were in close!

Well folks, that's it from me at The Bridges of Ross for another year. Roll on 2012 and the long-awaited Albatross!!!

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Bridges of Ross 18th Sept 2011

Time: 0700-1940
Weather: F5 N-NW clear & bright but with heavy sea spray. F4-5 NW in the evening, clear & bright again with some lovely light conditions.
Observer(s): Niall T. Keogh, Noel Keogh, Brian Porter, Killian Mullarney, Eanna O'Flynn, Owen Foley, Conor Foley, Donal Foley, Shane Farrell, Mark Stewart, Geoff Oliver, Niall Hatch, Stephen McAvoy, Denis O'Sullivan, Richard Bonser, Tom Tarpey, Tony Mee et al.

Sooty Shearwater: 5
Wilson's Petrel: 2 [1 @ 09:05 (EO'Flynn, MStewart & CFoley) & 1 @ 11:20 (TTarpey)]
Leach's Petrel: 1
Storm Petrel: 8
Grey Phalarope: 19
Great Skua (Bonxie): 54
Pomarine Skua: 2
Arctic Skua: 37
Long-tailed Skua: 16 (3 adults & 13 juvs)
Sabine's Gull: c.170 (c.75% juvs)
Little Gull: 2 juv/1st-w
Sandwich Tern: 12
Arctic Tern: c.500
Puffin: 11
Common Scoter: 2
Red-throated Diver: 7
Great Northern Diver: 1

Bottlenose Dolphin: c.6
Sunfish: 1

A relatively quiet day by recent standards! Sea spray was horrendous early on this morning but some excellent views of really close juvenile Long-tailed Skuas more than made up for it. There was a notable increase in the number of juvenile Sabine's Gulls vs. the number of adult birds seen today. Both Wilson's Petrels were seen whilst I was off swanning around the gardens looking for migrants, which turned out to be a worthwhile exercise as I found a nice 1st-winter Common Rosefinch in Kilbaha village (nice to see some passerines for a change!).

Common Rosefinch (Richard Bonser)

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Sab's-fest Round 2 @ Bridges of Ross 17th Sept 2011

Time: 07:00-19:30
Weather: F5 NW in the morning & F5 W-NW in the afternoon with short squalls at times otherwise clear, bright & sunny for the most part.
Observer(s): Niall T. Keogh, Noel Keogh, Brian Porter, Owen Foley, Shane Farrell, Killian Mullarney, Tom Kilbane, Niall Hatch, Stephen McAvoy et al.

Balearic Shearwater: 3
Sooty Shearwater: 145
Manx Shearwater: max. 10,000
Wilson's Petrel: 1 (NTKeogh)
Leach's Petrel: 38
Storm Petrel: 16
Grey Phalarope: 130
Great Skua (Bonxie): 47
Pomarine Skua: 3
Arctic Skua: 150+
Long-tailed Skua: 76 (64 adults & 12 juvs)
Sabine's Gull: 865+ (c.25% juvs)
Black Tern: 26 juvs
Sandwich Tern: 45
Common Tern: 1 juv
Arctic Tern: c.8,000
Puffin: 62
Common Scoter: 6
Red-throated Diver: 15

Bottlenose Dolphin: 1+
Common Dolphin: c.5
Sunfish: 2-3


Friday, 16 September 2011

Sab's-fest @ Bridges of Ross 16th Sept 2011

Time: 12:40-19:40
Weather: F4 SW sunny, dry & hazy at a distance in the afternoon turning F5 W with some light showers & grey seas with good visibility in the evening.
Observer(s): Niall T. Keogh, Noel Keogh & Joe Shannon.

Sooty Shearwater: c.1,360
Manx Shearwater: c.12,500
Leach's Petrel: 8
Storm Petrel: 21 
Great Skua (Bonxie): 60
Arctic Skua: 184 
Long-tailed Skua: 35 (31 adults, 2 2nd cal-yr & 2 juv)
Sabine's Gull: 392+ (c.40% juvs)
Little Gull: 4 juv/1st-w 
Black Tern: 8 juv 
Little Tern: 4 juv 
Sandwich Tern: 13 
Arctic Tern: c.5,000 
Common Tern: 1 juv 
Grey Phalarope: 1 
Puffin: 3
Common Scoter: 8 
Light-bellied Brent Goose: 18 
Red-throated Diver: 13
Bar-tailed Godwit: 12

Minke Whale: 1
Common Dolphin: c.5
Sunfish: 1

Spent the morning up around Loop Head trying to increase that flock of Buff-B's (which has now dropped to 'just' 8 birds) & looking for migrants (picked up an Osprey & a Ruff!) but with a forecast for Westerly winds in the afternoon, we decided to head to the The Bridges just before lunchtime. Straight away it was apparent that massive numbers of Arctic Terns were going by, with a nice passage of Sooties & Sab's Gulls tipping past too. It all went bananas in the late afternoon with flocks of anywhere between 50-300 Arctic Terns with 5-10 Sab's Gulls amongst them, on show at almost any given stage, closely followed by plenty of marauding skuas. As far as I'm aware, today's total of Sab's Gulls is the highest ever recorded in Ireland, beating that of 315 seen from BoR back in 1997!!! If myself & Noel had been present on site since dawn then who knows what the final tally would have been? I know of higher day totals of Long-tailed Skuas but it was certainly a personal best anyway. The Little Terns were a Bridges first for me too & it was cool seeing a few Black Terns & Little Gulls thrown in there for good measure. 

Without a doubt, it was an immense passage but weird in how selective it was for terns, Sab's, skuas, Sooties & Manxies. Not a single Pom, Balearic or Great Shear to be seen & surprisingly small numbers of Fulmars, Gannets, Kittiwakes, Leach's & Grey Phals (but then again the winds were Westerly as opposed to North-westerly).

F5-6 W-NW winds blowing all night & until Sunday afternoon...CAN'T WAIT!

Sabine's Gull (John Murphy)

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Bridges of Ross 15th Sept 2011

Time: 07:00-09:00 & 16:45-18:30
Weather: F1-2 SE, clear, dry & bright in the morning. F4 S-SE, overcast, calm with good visibility later on.
Observer(s): Niall T. Keogh, Noel Keogh, Tomas Kjelsson, Rolf Sjöberg & Keith Bennett.

Balearic Shearwater: 1
Sooty Shearwater: 16
Storm Petrel: 6
Great Skua (Bonxie): 5
Pomarine Skua: 1
Arctic Skua: 10
Long-tailed Skua: 1 adult
Sabine's Gull: 48 (13 juvs)
Little Gull: 1 juv/1st-w
Sandwich Tern: 14
Arctic Tern: c.140
Common Scoter: 16
Light-bellied Brent Goose: 10
Red-throated Diver: 4
Black Guillemot: 1
Whimbrel: 5
Golden Plover: 1

Common Dolphin: c.30

Again a day of feeding & milling as opposed to true passage. Most of the Sabine's Gulls & Arctic Terns moved through within the first hour suggesting they had roosted somewhere nearby. As such it appeared that no new birds were present offshore so we decided to hit the headland and look for migrants. Myself & Noel went up to The Fodry where Keith, Tomas & Rolf had seen 7 Buff-breasted Sandpipers yesterday (an increase on the flock of 5 from Friday). We got there to find a couple of Peregrines causing havoc in the area, with 12 Lapland Buntings & 13 Black-tailed Godwits flying around looking worried! After meeting Jeff Copner, who was also looking for the Buff-B's, we strolled over to a cattle field where they had been seen previously. Whilst doing my best to string two Golden Plovers there into something more exciting, a flock of waders flew in over the road & settled in front of us...14 Buff-breasted Sandpipers accompanied by 2 Dunlin...the flock had doubled overnight! We watched the Buff-B's feeding for some time but they were quite flighty & moved around the field a fair bit. After taking to the air once more & settling down again, we soon realised that there was in fact 15 juvenile Buff-breasted Sandpipers in front of us. Where had the newbie come from? Had it just arrived fresh in also? That's Loop Head for you I guess...magic stuff. I've been informed that this total equals the previous record set for the largest flock seen in Europe, that of 15 seen on Scilly in 1974! We'll be up there again tomorrow to see if any more decide to drop in overnight however ;)

Jeff was kind enough to send on a pic of all 15 Buff-B's plus the 2 Dunlin in flight as well as a cracking pic of one on the deck. For more, check out his blog, "A Life At The Shoreline".

Buff-breasted Sandpipers (Jeff Copner)

John Murphy also sent on some great seabird pics which he took from 'The Slab' at BoR yesterday, including what are probably the best shots of Wilson's Petrel ever taken from land in the West Pal?

Wilson's Petrel x2, adult Sabine's Gull, juvenile Sabine's Gull & a Great Skua (John Murphy)

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Bedlam @ Bridges of Ross 14th Sept 2011

Time: 07:00-10:45 & 14:45-19:20
Weather: F5 NW dry, bright & clear in the morning. F2 NW, sunny, dry & warm later on.
Observer(s): Niall T. Keogh, Noel Keogh, John N. Murphy, Tomas Kjelsson, Rolf Sjöberg, Keith Bennett, Kris de Rouck, Wout de Rouck & Joe Shannon.

Fea's-type Petrel: 1 west @ 18:45-18:50 (NKeogh & NTKeogh)
Sooty Shearwater: c.60
Manx Shearwater: c.5,000
Wilson's Petrel: 4 (NTKeogh & NKeogh)
Leach's Petrel: 28
Storm Petrel: c.35
Grey Phalarope: 1
Great Skua (Bonxie): 25+
Pomarine Skua: 4
Arctic Skua: c.55
Long-tailed Skua: 16 (14 adults, a 2nd cal-year & 1 juv.)
Sabine's Gull: c.95 (25% juvs)
Sandwich Tern: 6
Arctic Tern: c.300
Puffin: 5
Red-throated Diver: 5
Common Scoter: 6
Teal: 1

Minke Whale: 1-2

The weather calmed down pretty quickly but there was still tons of seabirds to be seen throughout the day in mixed feeding flocks & rafts, just a couple of hundred meters offshore. Manxies, Sooties, Gannets, Sab's, skuas, terns & petrels were all circling around showing well out from 'The Slab'. Feeding activity died a bit in the afternoon but resting flocks of up to 50 Sab's Gulls & milling skuas made sure there was plenty to look at. The Wilson's Petrels were seen on & off throughout the day, giving fantastic views whilst feeding, displaying their characteristic head-up, wings out straight & legs down hopping posture. A strong Manxie passage started up around 17:30 and at 18:45 Noel Keogh picked up an Arctic Skua chasing another slimmer bird, way off in the distance, over 3/4 of the way out. On revealing it's underside while banking, he soon realised the bird the Arctic was harassing was a Fea's-type Petrel!!! The Fea's continued on, heading west & remained in view for approximately 5 minutes, but it was REALLY far away & in dull evening light. I managed to locate it & got reasonable views I suppose given the distance for quite some time. On 40x zoom the black underwings & grey head with darker eye mask were apparent whilst the upperparts appeared to be uniformly dark which is often the case with these birds when seen in tricky light. Challenging! 

Mega digi-scoped Wilson's Petrel! (Niall Keogh)

September Seatrack Update

The last Seatrack survey weekend (3rd/4th Sept) saw some good national & local movements of shearwaters recorded right around the coast from Donegal to Wicklow. Details from a few of these watches are listed below.

The next survey takes places this weekend (17th/18th Sept) with  moderate-strong North-westerly winds predominating so who knows what will be picked up this time around? If you're interested in taking part in a Seatrack survey then e-mail Niall Keogh at

Location: Bloody Foreland, Co. Donegal
Date: 3rd September 2011
Time: 07:05-10:25
Weather: F4 W turning F4 SW, dry with good visibility. 
Observer(s): Ralph Sheppard & Chris Ingram.

Sooty Shearwater: 112 W
Manx Shearwater: 125 W & 3 E
Great Skua (Bonxie): 7
Pomarine Skua: 2
Arctic Skua: 4
Sandwich Tern: 4 W
Puffin: 1 E
Great Northern Diver: 2 W

A good showing by the Sooties.

Location: Annagh Head, Co. Mayo
Date: 3rd September 2011
Time: 07:00-18:20
Observer(s): Alan Lauder, KDShaw, JMAOsborne, SDHousden, Dave Suddaby, Chris Jones, Rob Innes et al.

Cory's Shearwater: 4
Great Shearwater: 333
Balearic Shearwater: 3
Sooty Shearwater: 2,900
Manx Shearwater: 5,700
Fulmar: 1,920
Storm Petrel: 4
Great Skua (Bonxie): 43
Pomarine Skua: 20
Arctic Skua: 28
Sandwich Tern: 8
Arctic Tern: 19
Puffin: 18
Whimbrel: 2

An excellent tally of shearwaters. Cory's are often quite scarce away from Cork, so a good North-west record indeed.

Location: Dursey Island, Co. Cork
Date: 3rd September 2011
Time: 07:30-10:30
Weather: F4 NW, dry with good-excellent visibility.
Observer(s): Derek A. Scott, Joanna E. Scott & David Cooke.

Sooty Shearwater: 4 W & 133 E
Manx Shearwater: 110 W & 249 E
Great Skua (Bonxie): 3 E
Arctic Skua: 5 W
Arctic Tern: 2 E
Puffin: 2 E

Minke Whale: 1
Common Dolphin: 2
Harbour Porpoise: 12

A good run of Sooties in conditions which weren't ideal for seawatching from Dursey.

Location: Brownstown Head, Co. Waterford
Date: 3rd September 2011 07:40-10:40 ()
Time: 07:40-10:40
Weather: 4-5 SW later 2-3 W, vis moderate to good, occasional drizzle.
Observer(s): Jonathan Bulfin & Paul Walsh.

Balearic Shearwater: 1 W
Arctic Skua: 2 E
Great Skua: 1 W
Manx Shearwater: 60 E, 384W, 1 on sea
Fulmar: 7 E, 39 W
Gannet: 143 E, 94 W
Bar-tailed Godwit: 2 W
Kittiwake: 7 E
Sandwich Tern: 101 E, 37 W
Razorbill: 3 E, 28 W
Large auk sp: 4 E, 39 W

Another quiet watch, but with the (belated) first Balearic Shearwater of the year for Brownstown.

Location: Carnsore Point, Co. Wexford
Date: 4th September 2011
Time: 07:15-10:45
Observer(s): Noel Keogh & Kieran Grace

Great Shearwater: 3
Balearic Shearwater: 4
Sooty Shearwater: 20
Manx Shearwater: 6,300
Great Skua (Bonxie): 1
Arctic Skua: 2
Little Gull: 1
Puffin: 6

Anyone who has seawatched from Carnsore before will appreciate how good these totals are! One of the Great Shears came in nice & close too.

Location: Wicklow Head, Co. Wicklow
Date: 4th September 2011 
Time: 07:30-10:30
Weather: Calm at the beginning, turning F2-3 SW later & F3-4 SE by the end with squally showers & poor visibility. 
Observer(s): Steve Newton

Sooty Shearwater: 1 N
Manx Sheawater: 3 N & 1 S
Storm Petrel: 1 S
Common Scoter: 12 S
Fulmar: 3 Milling
Gannet: 23 N, 14 S & 13 M
Kittiwake: 11 N, 169 S & 673 M
Auk sp: 6 S
Sandwich Tern: 32 S
Common Tern: 7 S & 6 M
'Commic' Tern: 1 N & 1 S
Black Guillemot: 1 M

Sooty Shears are always a welcome sight during an east coast seawatch!

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Wilson's Bonanza @ Bridges of Ross 13th Sept 2011

Time: 06:45-10:45 & 12:25-19:15
Weather: F6 W-NW, bright, clear & sunny. Some brief showers in the afternoon.
Observer(s): Niall T. Keogh, Noel Keogh, Joe Adamson, John N. Murphy, Stan Nugent, Dave McNamara, Tomas Kjelsson, Rolf Sjöberg, Keith Bennett, Kris de Rouck, Joe Shannon et al.

Great Shearwater: 1
Balearic Shearwater: 4
Sooty Shearwater: 111
Manx Shearwater: c.500 (evening passage)
Wilson's Petrel: 6!!! (NTKeogh, NKeogh & JNMurphy)
Leach's Petrel: 80
Storm Petrel: 115
Grey Phalarope: 7
Great Skua (Bonxie): 95
Pomarine Skua: 2
Arctic Skua: 27
Long-tailed Skua: 20 [14 adults, 2 2nd cal-years & 4 juvs] (NTKeogh, NKeogh, KdeRouck, JNMurphy & SNugent)
Sabine's Gull: 130 (42 juvs)
Little Gull: 1 juv/1st-w
Sandwich Tern: 60
Arctic Tern: 145
Puffin: 12
Common Scoter: 7
Red-throated Diver: 6
Great Northern Diver: 2
Whimbrel: 2

Buff-breasted Sandpiper: 1 flushed from the short grass behind the seawatching point at 10:50, flew west (NTKeogh)
Ruff: 1 juvenile flew west over the seawatch point also

Minke Whale: 1
Leatherback Turtle: 3 sightings
Sunfish: 3+

Monday, 12 September 2011

Insanity @ Bridges of Ross 12th Sept 2011

Time: 07:00-19:10
Weather: F7 Westerly & dry throughout the day, good sunny spells & some spray.
Observer(s): Niall T. Keogh, Noel Keogh, Joe Adamson, Paul Troake, Dave McNamara, Tomas Kjelsson, Rolf Sjöberg, Keith Bennett, Kris de Rouck, Jim Bowman, Patrick Veale et al.

Fea's-type Petrel: 1 west @ 17:10 (NTKeogh)
Great Shearwater: 4
Balearic Shearwater: 4
Sooty Shearwater: c.1,000
Manx Shearwater: 2,000+
Wilson's Petrel: 4 (NKeogh & NTKeogh)
Leach's Petrel: 45+
Storm Petrel: c.250
Grey Phalarope: 4
Great Skua (Bonxie): 110
Pomarine Skua: 15 (incl. 3 juvs)
Arctic Skua: 58
Long-tailed Skua: 22 [10 adults, 1 subadult, 3 2nd cal-years & 8 juvs] (NTKeogh, NKeogh, JAdamson, PTroake & DMcNamara)
Sabine's Gull: 200+ (c.25% juvs.)
Sandwich Tern: 4
Arctic Tern: c.600
Puffin: 4
Common Scoter: 3

I'll do a write-up of the days events when I get my life back in order!

In the meantime, here's more of John Murphy's shots from recent days...

Quite a few partially leucistic dark phase Arctic Skuas going by these days (John Murphy)

Juv. Sabine's Gull (John Murphy)