Tuesday, 23 April 2019

A black Duck then loads of Black Ducks

Yesterday saw us travelling back south so I took the small detour into Strontian via the Corran ferry. (£8.50 each way and only a couple of hundred yards across)
The water level in the bay was high so after a very quick scan I drove up to the church and walked down to the bridge to find the American Black Duck sitting on the river underneath with one of his hybrid sons. I watched it for a while grabbing a few shots before driving Suzanne down to the bridge for her to tick the duck from the car and add to her car list which also includes Blue Winged Teal and Sea Eagle from this trip.

The American Black Duck of Strontian
Suzanne ticking another lifer from the car
From Strontian we continued south through Edinburgh to Musselburgh where I scanned for three hours to find the White-winged Scoter getting three good scope views in this time along with dozens of Common and Velvet Scoter. I also found a pair of Surf Scoter before adding a second drake as a self found bird. I tried to grab some images but in truth the birds were just too far out and pointing the camera at Scoters on the sea is never going to bring much success.

I think I've managed to get all four Scoter species in this little collection (well cropped)
A long way out
A close fly by of Velvet Scoters (had the white wing do this but too busy scoping it at the time)
To give some idea of the challenge as the flock of Scoters are actually in this image
First light this morning
Also noted here were lots of Eider and Oystercatchers along with a single Fulmar and Gannet. Two Red-throated diver and several Long-tailed Duck made up the numbers.

Common Sandpiper (seem to be on every rock around the edge of he Lochs now)
best I could get of the Surf Scoters (just visible is the head of the second drake)
Cormorants at Mussleburgh
Eiders at Musselburgh
I stopped over in Edinburgh and had another hour with the Scoters this morning finding the White winged Scoter a little easier in the less bright conditions and then found the three Surf Scoter again although somebody has since found another female.

Hundreds of Oystercatchers at Musselburgh
so that concludes my trip to Scotland and brings the year list to 223 and the life list to 400

On reflection
Now...is that Ortolan at Abberton going to stick for another day?????

1 comment:

  1. Great set of photos, well done. Have a good day Diane