Wednesday, 14 September 2011

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!

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