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
Red-throated Diver: 5
Common Scoter: 6
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)|