Typical garden birds in Assynt!

March 5th 2018

Ask folk for a list of their garden birds in Assynt and it will, more often then not, contain a few surprises. This can be in part due to the term ‘garden’ being loosely applied, the open ground that surrounds most of them and of course not all Assynt gardens consist of formal borders, cross-cut lawns and paved driveways!

Add to the above some cold and snowy winter weather as experienced during early March 2018 and you never know what might turn up.

Some examples which were sent in to the Field Club between the 1st and 5th March included a single Fieldfare feeding at Badnaban (Dave Bird); two Skylarks which took up residence in a Torbreck garden for three days (Gwen Richards); two Snipe that spent a couple of days aerating the lawn in a Clashmore garden (Martin Hall) and a single Woodcock that made an appearance in another garden at Badnaban (Les and Liz Pearce).

It is always worth having a look around your garden, whether town or country, after a fall of snow as you might see signs of what has visited you even if you didn’t see them, that includes birds and often mammals.

David Haines

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Recent Sightings

Kittiwake

c100 adult and 1st-winter birds feeding off Clachtoll (DAH) (24/09)

Tufted Duck

two male birds on Loch Drumbeg (DAH) (22/09)

Merlin

single bird near Stoer Village Hall (DAH) (21/09)

UPDATE on colour-ringed Oystercatcher

we have heard back from the Icelandic Wader Group regarding the colour-ringed Oystercatcher spotted at Bay of Culkein on Tuesday. It was ringed, as an adult, near its nest while it was territory-guarding on 19th May this year; the location was Eskifjorour which is on the east coast of Iceland. We will post a short article on the Field Club's website in the next few days regarding other sightings of colour-ringed birds recorded in Assynt (DAH) (20/09)

Pink-footed Goose

c225, in four skeins, heading east over Culkein Drumbeg (DAH). Oh boy, it's autumn! (20/09)

Wigeon

single male in eclipse plumage Loch Inver (DAH) (20/09)

Manx Shearwater

young bird rescued from a garden at Inchnadamph (Chris Rix/Andy Summers). The bird, which was well off-course, was successfully released at Stoer the next day. (18/09)

Oystercatcher

four birds resting on rocks Bay of Culkein (DAH). One of these birds, an adult, had a combination of coloured rings on its legs. The details have been submitted to the appropriate ringing scheme, which appears to be the International Wader Study Group, and we will report back once we hear from them. (18/09)

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