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Galana's. Third big year.


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11 minutes ago, Dave Williams said:

It shows!!!!


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Dave Williams

I'm looking to be moderated Fred!!!!



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13 hours ago, Galana said:

Now back on the island for a few weeks but I have got most of the regulars already.:(


However, your regular trip to Scotland must be just around the corner?!

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6 hours ago, xelas said:

However, your regular trip to Scotland must be just around the corner?!

It's a bloomin long road to that corner.. 43 and half days but who's counting?

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Scotland can wait. No appointments and no strong wind so I took myself off to my little patch for a couple of hours as there is one bird that lives there that is the very devil to get to pose and I somehow felt lucky (and very determined.)

I am going to tell it as it is so I crave @Game Warden's indulgence for the more than normal images..

First of all a regular:-



137. Willow Warbler. Ballakesh. Isle of Man.


and now:-

Hunt the birdy..




And then I got my eye in (and the camera too.)





138. Goldcrest. Ballakesh Plantation. Isle of Man. Gotcha!!


But my luck was still running and in between chasing a small green/yellow target in the microscopic viewfinder I 'accidentally' homed in on a slightly larger patch of yellow.







139. Siskin. A 'lifer first' for this little plantation for me.  Ballakesh. IOM.

A pleasing couple of hours.

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While at my patch on Wednesday I took advantage of a lull to record my first Peacock Butterfly of the year but I will wait a proper Peacock before counting it.



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missed your 100th - a belated Congrats! the bearded vulture is a special one, indeed. I've always thought they were a handsome breed (i've seen them only in docus), but now, your bald ibis is just as handsome !

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Thanks @Kitsafari.

Another week has passed since I had anything worthwhile on the birding front, including weather so took advantage of the lull to venture the John O'Groats of Man. All of 6 miles as the Gull flies from home to Point of Ayre.

Lots of pipits, wagtails, swallows and some 'fresh' wheatears. Eiders and various gulls. Even a Red-throated diver too fast and far off to capture.

But, as I expected, the Gannets were feeding nicely....



140. (Northern) Gannet. A non breeder here but that does not stop them coming to pinch our fish!


And on the shingle at the Point were around 50 of these and a 'partial lifer' ..



141. Golden Plover. Partial lifers as, whilst I see them regularly in winter, I had never seen them in their lovely breeding plumage.

As the car park was already filling up as we left for lunch it looks like these birds won't be around after Easter as the Point is a popular venue for tourists and the shingle is not yet roped off to protect the ground nesters.


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Now the kids are back at school and the doggie walkers have to use leads I ventured out to my patch this morning. Usual stuff of course. There had been talk of Crossbills which would have been nice but to no avail.

I took this just give a better quality for 137:-


Willow Warbler. Lots around now.

And then a stranger appeared. It had its back to me and In the bins I clearly saw a boat shaped tail of a warbler.

Grabbed camera with the zoom taking forever as usual (I sometimes think it needs 24 hours notice!!). by the time I got the bird in the viewfinder it had turned to face me prior to flying off. I got one shot. Not brilliant (but my rarely are!  :P)


The call and warm brown colour was right. I think this is a Cetti's Warbler which is going to get our Rarities committee to have a nervous breakdown. I have seen them before in Europe but a first for me over here.

If nobody violently disagrees ......

142. Cetti's Warbler.


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Still within my 8km radius a short afternoon excursion managed to see three of these paddling by rather late in the year and now almost into full breeding costume. If only the sun could keep up.



143. Red-throated Diver. Off Ballaghennie beach. We get all four species of Diver. My book now seems to use the Yanqui term Loon but to me they will always be Divers! I hope to get better photos of this and its relatives later but a tick is a tick. These are very specialised waterbirds that only come ashore to breed in Lakes and Lochs. so much so that their legs are right at the rear of the body and they usually 'slide' along the ground with the legs pushing from astern. Red-throated, the smallest of the Divers, can  be recognised by its slightly angled up bill 'retrousse' fashion.

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Dave Williams

Two very nice birds there Fred. I wouldn't dare disagree with the Cetti's. I have only ever seen one once in the UK at Minsmere but they are reported heard on our local reserve when passing through. If it's not Cetti's it a Wren so unlikely that you would have confused those two!

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Wrens don't have broad boat tails although front on I do see a resemblance.

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Dave Williams
Just now, Galana said:

Wrens don't have broad boat tails although front on I do see a resemblance.


I can only go one the shot you posted Fred, you got to see more than I did and I certainly don't think you would confuse it with a Wren! ( especially if it sang)

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Back today in lovely sunshine. Loads of the 'usual stuff' but no newcomers unless the Manx Yellow-billed Duck counts.



Manx Yellow-billed Duck. Anas erythroflavus jemimaensis. :P


And  an upgraded duplicate.


32. Duplicate. NB. Blue skies at last!!

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Dave Williams

You have had me once, in the words of The Who "I won't get fooled again!".



and I see you have done the honourable thing and not counted it either! Some of us have standards :ph34r:

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4 hours ago, Dave Williams said:

Some of us have standards :ph34r:

I know! It took ages to work out a suitable scientific name and Puddleduck just did not cut it.

It did score well on the cuteness factor though.

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I went out over the Bank Holiday weekend dodging runners, walkers, cyclists and bikers and brought nothing home but a couple photos of Red-necked Wallabies.

But today I tried again with better luck.

The wind was causing problems for the bird but he hung on for me:-





144. Common Whitethroat. Smeale Ayres. IOM.


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The leopard takes another tentative step forward.....within his home range.




145. Sand Martin. Ayre road.

What @xelas would call a spray and pray.




146. Tree Pipit. Smeale Ayres. IOM.



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Excellent Whitethroat and Pipit, and well done with the Martin-in Flight

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Peter Connan

Don't let anybody fool you. When it comes to those little buggers, EVERYBODY sprays and prays. Some equipment just makes it easier than some other equipment...


Well done.

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32 minutes ago, Peter Connan said:

When it comes to those little buggers, EVERYBODY sprays and prays.

And here was I with a mental image of folk's wives flicking Gnats into the air whilst spouse held a sharp focus just off their finger tips! Another illusion shattered!:o

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Talking of Illusions...

I set off to my usual patch hoping to nail another target which I saw but failed to portray.

Here is an ECB of maybe one of them but I will save the tick for another better day.

Never mind the bird. Look at the blue sky.


By way of compensation here is a re-play of 132 this time on the island.



Northern Wheatear of course. I think this may be the last one through until they return in Autumn.

Edited by Galana
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pedro maia
1 hour ago, Galana said:

Never mind the bird. Look at the blue sky.



If we forget the birds and focus on the blue sky I may have a chance to win the BY competition :lol:.

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Getting left behind and need to catch up with all those excellent foreign trips as I have not been out of Europe yet in 2019.

So yesterday I tak the highroad (and a boat, an waz i'scotland just afore lunch. My route did not take me close to Loch Tummel so I had to adapt the old refrain of Sir Harry Lauder, wi the better known Loch Lomond to get..

"Bi Loch Lomond an Loch Rannoch n Loch Abar I will go, bi heather tracks, wi heaven in their wiles"

Til I get tae smell the Tangle o the Isles."

I will spare you the rest but it may cost you a beer.


So I have jumped the island and am now resting on Loch Sunart in the small village where Strontium 90 was 'discovered'.

The weather continues cold but I have seen a few birds but not much to add to my total just yet. Indeed I have a very modest target for this trip of maybe 30 so even the next century will have to wait awhile. But here are a couple to start me off:-



147. Canada Goose. Crianlarich.





148. Red-breasted Merganser. Loch Sunart. Score extra for the kill.


Spent the afternoon chasing cuckoos. Tomorrow is another day.


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@Galana have a great relaxing time in Scotland! Weather has to be quite similar to what we have right now in Slovenia. Not that good for birding :( but great for reading books ... and trip reports :).

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