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Galana's Seventh. Lucky numbers.


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It has taken me 11 days to get back out again. Less weather than 'whether I can be motivated.'

But Spring is here and March seems to be going out like a lamb so time to see what is around.


Up to the coast which yielded only a passing glimpse of a Diver. Does not matter which as it did not stop. RT likely, Gannets, Eiders and some very frisky finches or pipits that pose until you get them framed and then fly off laughing.:(

ON the roadside Gorse a happy little Dunnock posed for me.



215/IOM 033.  Dunnock. Point of Ayre. IOM.


I then drove a couple of miles to the next beach access and my little plantation "Ballakesh". Several glimpses of lbjs whizzing from bush to bush but only positive ID on Wood Pigeon, Goldfinch which I can do better with later.

So up to the beach and quite a surprise.


216. IOM 34.. Gtr Black-backed Gulls. Ballaghennie Beach. IOM.

I say surprise due to a pair but the next bird was an even greater surprise.


First a pair fishing..


 and then preening.



217/IOM 035.  Sandwich Terns. Ballaghennie. IN March?? They don't breed on the Island but stop off on their way over to a regular Northern Ireland (where they don't need a bloddy EU permit travel from one part of the United Kingdom to another. IOM being part of that common travel area.)


Finally I turned back to Ballakesh and there waiting for me was Jack Wren singing is head off..


218/ IOM 036. Eurasian Wren. Ballakesh Plantation. IOM.

Back home for lunch to discover that Carpet Fitters booked for tomorrow were waiting outside having thought we never went out.





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Racing along with some good additions from IOM

Surprised to see terns so early!

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Certainly early for the terns, although a few apparently now spend the whole winter in our delta, so their migration habits might be changing. I have no idea why…..

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12 hours ago, TonyQ said:

Surprised to see terns so early!

1 hour ago, PeterHG said:

now spend the whole winter in our delta

Me neither. Just read my 'guide' and it does say 'Return migration starts in February...often seen near breeding colonies in March/April" so that fits. Not Global warming or Brexit after all.:P

Just anxious would be parents anxious to put their towels on the best sun loungers.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Lovely flat sea due to offshore wind brought in the Gannets to my window.

And an addition to my 'Lounge list.




Sandwich Tern. Galana Towers. No change to BY218 or IOM 36 but up one to Lounge 13.;)

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Took a chance on the weather to get out before the weekend. Bad enough today as I arrived at one spot to find two large vans and bloody paddle boarders instead of birds. The Oyster catchers were not impressed.

Right. First a couple of repeats from the Point.

I am sure there was a Long-tailed Duck with the Eiders but it was far off and kept hiding.

So something for Angie.




I walked to check on the Seals as you do....1-DSCN4344.JPG.26778eeb7ee274c6add42fd7a0fc37fb.JPG1-DSCN4357.JPG.9a4695f02f0bb05d45d679356d9da5d2.JPG

Their singing made a nice chorus with the Eider's cooing.


And on the walk back I found something for @michael-ibktoo.

They must have been there on the walk out but I missed them.





All nice and smart in their masks and waistcoats (that's Vest in American speak).

No scores. Still at  BY218 & IOM 36 .

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Then as people arrived to look at the Seals, both species, Atlantic Grey and Common (Harbour) are here, I left to check up on the Peregrine site.

Sadly still no sign and her last years nest is taken over by Fulmars.

But all was not lost as I got three ticks. that's scores not Lymes disease.


Down at sea level were some Auks.

Not ideal, can do better but it will save me risking my neck clambering around on 200 foot cliffs f I use these instead.


219. Common (Brown Guillimot) Maughold Brough. BY219 IOM 37.


Not so common but much smarter.....


Razorbill. Maughold Broughs. BY220/IOM38.


And on the cliffs just above me.....


Redbilled Choughs. Maughold Broughs. BY221/IOM39.

I have seen Gillies and Chough from my Lounge occasionally but not for a while.


Back for shopping and a fresh Plaice for dinner later with a nice crisp Vinho Verde to help it down.

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That’s a good choice of wine ;).

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1 hour ago, pedro maia said:

That’s a good choice of wine ;)

Naturally. I first tried V.V many years ago and have always liked it.

This one was  'Maria Fadista' . Only 8.5% but delicious. The Plaice was excellent too.:P

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Nothing to add to my numbers today as it was already on all my lists but I could not resist some Armchair birding from my lounge. It put me in mind of @mvecht's chair from his last house.




Taken at a lonely lagoon in Walvis Bay?

Nope from my lounge in Ramsey Bay.

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Making Hay whilst the sun shone I took myself off to the far north and my little patch known as Ballakesh.

Not too busy but the birds were hiding as a Sparrowhawk was hunting and made several passes. (Sadly always whilst my attention was elsewhere! but I WILL get her one day.)

I think we have Swallows and both Martins around, plus an Alpine Swift  have arrived but not close enough to give  decent images.

I had to make do with a decent portrait of one of the many Goldfinches that were eluding the Sparrowhawk and a European Teal on a muddy farm pool.

But a tick is a tick.


1-DSCN4414.JPG.a1e10f35e9eaee11d755e84ecd7cecd9.JPG1-DSCN4415.JPG.5b7dc50e6e497f2ce0234cf25ef16c81.JPGGoldfinch.  222/IOM 40. Ballakesh. IOM




Eurasian Teal. 223/ IOM041. Ballaghennie Farm. IOM

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Really beautiful Goldfinch photos! 

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Steady on chaps. I do have a reputation to keep down to.:o

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Working on my reputation this morning I found something to practice on.

A late departing Diver was fishing  in the surf. What with the swell, the breakers and the fishing it was a tough call.

But perseverance paid off.


Red-throated winter plumage but I hope to get some in full colour when I reach the Hebrides at the end of May.


I had a flyby by a pair of Eider whilst aiming at the Diver.



Back off the beach which is all nicely roped off ready for the Terns that we hope will be here soon to breed I got a glimpse of my first Wheatear off the year. Might as well add it to the count..


224/IOM 42.  Northern Wheatear. Smeale Beach.


And as a Woodpigeon sat on a nearby wall it seemed a waste not to add it in too.1-DSCN4493.JPG.45d74b6c462922a792140eeb5c3dc347.JPG

225/IOM43. Woodpigeon. RingDove or Cushat. Smeale. IOM





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Peter Connan
4 hours ago, Galana said:

Steady on chaps. I do have a reputation to keep down to.:o


Well you blew it...

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4 hours ago, Peter Connan said:

Well you blew it...

Well I am not sure whether to :lol: or :( at that.

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You are getting excellent additions on IOM

Enviable lounge birding

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21 minutes ago, TonyQ said:

Enviable lounge birding

Thanks Tony.  Maybe the phrase "I need to get out more" was not coined for my ears?


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A short outing whilst the sun shone.

Nothing new but managed a product improvement and an increase in the IOM count.



A pair of more obliging Wheatears provided the improvement need to 224.


And despite the objectionable perch I felt I should increase the IOM count.


One swallow does not a summer make but it does take my IOM up one.

099/IOM 44.  Cranstal. IOM.


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Has he no shame?


After having briefly dallied with some semi decent photos I let the foggy morning lure me back to my own particular field of expertise.

And the Fog definitely helped with small f.stops, slow speeds and fast ISOs. 5.6, 1/80th and 1600 all helped.:P


A short walk in the woods for poor light as the "May Miracle" was beginning to cloak the previous bare branches and I was well into my comfort zone.

And the subjects played their part too for which I was very grateful.


A rare glimpse of a TreeCreeper made me pause and by sheer serendipity a small group of Long-tailed Tits came by. These are not common here so I took my chances with them in thick willows.



226/IOM 45. Long-tailed Tit. Close Sartfield Curraghs.


As they left I felt I was being watched. I was.


Red-necked Wallaby.


A slow stalk got me closer.



Proud mum


And Joey. Good to see they are looking well.


Nothing at the hide, rarely is since the Warden has blocked off all access, so I wandered out well content.

But I needed more practice so when this flew in, how could I resist?



227/IOM 46. Great Tit. Close Sartfield. IOM


Well, might as well complete the trio (no Coal Tits at this site.)




228/ IOM 47 Blue Tit. Close Sartfield.


And the morning total was 3 all.

3 Tits and 3 Marsupials.



Yes three. Another one, a large male, was waiting by my car.



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good to see you back on form

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The Wallaby portrait, though, is excellent!

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4 hours ago, PeterHG said:

The Wallaby portrait, though, is excellent!

Thanks Peter. There is no "wallaby" setting on my Nikkon so I had to use P.;)

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