Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Seatrack Update: 1st Sept Survey

This coming weekend sees the fourth Seatrack survey of the season taking place, with a start time of 07:35am. Please note that Saturday 1st Sept will be the priority day so as to complement other FAME surveys being conducted by our partners along the Western European seaboard, also on that date. If you would like to take part in this international seabird census then get in touch with Niall Keogh at seatrack@birdwatchireland.ie for details.

The highlight of the previous August Seatrack survey weekend was undoubtedly the finding of not one, but two Fea's-type Petrels which were associating with a milling flock of Manx Shearwaters off Carnsore Point, Co. Wexford on Saturday 18th. Once considered a mythical species in Irish waters, it is now apparent that with a bit of luck, a small number of these enigmatic Gadfly petrels can be found regularly off our coast, almost always in the company of migrating or feeding Manx Shearwaters. Other sightings of note from the survey weekend included several Black Terns & Great Shearwaters as well as some nice cetaceans & Ocean Sunfish.

A series of low pressures are due to hit the Irish coastline this week which will surely produce some interesting results, particularly along the west coast, in SW winds.

Best of luck to all this weekend,
Niall Keogh

Seatrack co-ordinator

Some late August Seatrack sightings as follows: (E = East, W = West, S = South, N = North & M = Milling)

Saturday 18th August 2012

Bloody Foreland, Co. Donegal (Chris Ingram)
5 W Sooty Shearwater, 7 W & 2 E Manx Shearwater, 401 W & 39 E Fulmar, 5 W Great Skua (Bonxie) & 1 E Skua sp.

Annagh Head, Co. Mayo (Dave Suddaby)
3 Sooty Shearwater, 6 Storm Petrels, 4 Great Skua (Bonxie) & 1 Arctic Skua.

Bridges of Ross, Co. Clare (Niall T. Keogh)
All birds heading W: 1 Balearic Shearwater, 16 Sooty Shearwater, 470+ Manx Shearwater, 590+ Fulmar, 20 Storm Petrel, 5 Common Scoter, 1 Pomarine Skua, 8 Arctic Skua, 6 Puffin, 5-6 Bottlenose Dolphins & 100+ Common Dolphins. Full details here

Galley Head, Co. Cork (Colin Barton)
3 Sooty Shearwater & 1 Ocean Sunfish.

Ram Head, Co. Waterford (Andrew Malcolm)
68 W Manx Shearwater, 1 W Storm Petrel, 1 W Great Skua (Bonxie) & 1 Humpback Whale.

Brownstown Head, Co. Waterford (Paul M Walsh)
31 E, 10 W & 50+ M Manx Shearwater, 1 W Great Skua (Bonxie), 1 W Arctic Skua, 2 E Common Scoter, 13 E & 43 W Sandwich Tern & 1 Grey Seal.

Carnsore Point, Co. Wexford (Noel Keogh)
2 W Fea’s-type Petrels, 1 Great Shearwater, 4 Sooty Shearwater, c.1,000 W + M Manx Shearwater, 3 Black Tern, 1 Little Gull, 4 Arctic Skua, 2 Storm Petrel, 1 Puffin, 15 Common Scoter, 5 Little Terns, 4 Mediterranean Gulls, 100’s of ‘Commic’ & Roseate Terns.

Sunday 19th August 2012

Bridges of Ross, Co. Clare (Niall T. Keogh)
All birds heading W: 2 Balearic Shearwater, 30 Sooty Shearwater, 395+ Manx Shearwater, 190+ Fulmar, 142 Storm Petrel, 7 Common Scoter, 4 Great Skua (Bonxie), 1 Pomarine Skua, 12 Arctic Skua, 1 Black Tern, 2 Puffin, 1 Spotted Redshank, 8-10 Bottlenose Dolphin, 30+ Common Dolphin & 2 Leatherback Turtle. Full details here.

Galley Head, Co. Cork (Colin Barton)
1 Great Shearwater, 6 Sooty Shearwater, 2 Great Skua (Bonxie) & 1 Harbour Porpoise.

Carnsore Point, Co. Wexford (Kieran Grace & Alyn Walsh)
1 Sooty Shearwater, 12 Common Scoter, 1 Great Skua (Bonxie), 4 Arctic Skua, 7 Black Tern & 7 Great-crested Grebe. 

Wicklow Head, Co. Wicklow (Steve Newton)
2,000 N Manx Shearwater.

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