Sightings – March 2014

March 1st 2014

Sightings – March 2014


Wheatear – single Stoerhead Lighthouse, 31st March (Leigh Sedgley)

Goldcrest – 2 Glenleraig, 31st March (DAH)

Long-tailed Tit – single collecting nesting material Glenleraig, 31st March (DAH)

Goldeneye – 3 (1 male 2 females) Loch Ruighean an Aitinn, Drumbeg, 31st March (DAH)

Song Thrush – 3 Culkein Drumbeg, 31st March (DAH)

Eider – 10 (5 pairs) Oldany Estuary, 31st March (DAH)

Wheatear – 3 Clashnessie, 30th March (Roger and Eva Kershaw)

Reed Bunting – single male Clachtoll, 30th March (Lesley Sleight)

Lapwing – 11 Clachtoll, 30th March (DAH)

Black-throated Diver – single off Clachtoll, 30th March (Lesley Sleight)

Red-throated Diver – singles Bay of Clachtoll and Bay of Stoer, 30th March (DAH)

Great Northern Diver – 4 off Clachtoll, 30th March (DAH)

Black-throated Diver – single back on Loch Druim Suardalain, 29th March (DAH)

Little Grebe – single on Lochan Sgeireach, 29th March (DAH)

Stonechat – pair near Loch Crocach, 29th March (Howard and Julie Grey)

Snow Bunting – Stoer Peat Track, 29th March (Claire Belshaw)

Great Northern Diver – single Loch Nedd, 28th March (Ian and Pat Evans)

Tawny Owl – three recent rescues from chimneys, one at Ardvar by Beccy Garvie and Ian Evans and two at Strathan by Brian Scott emphasise the need to make sure you have a bird safe cowl fitted to your chimney pots. More information and photograph on Articles.

Mistle Thrush – singles near Glenleraig, 26th March and Nedd, 28th March (Ian and Pat Evans)

Yellowhammer – 6 near Loch an Ordain, Torbreck, 26th March (John Gorman). Good to get another report of ‘high’ numbers of this threatend species.

Teal – 2 pairs Loch an Ordain, Torbreck, 26th March (DAH)

Grey Wagtail – female between the bridges over River Inver, Lochinver, 26th March (DAH)

Pheasant – 2 males near Loch an Ordain, Torbreck, 25th March (John Gorman)

Wheatear – female Stoer and male Clashnessie, 25th March (DAH)

Pied Wagtail – 4 (2 males 2 females – the first females) Stoer, 25th March (DAH)

Black-headed Gull – 5 adults Bay of Stoer, 25th March (DAH)

Skylark – single bird in full display flight with song, Clachtoll, 25th March (DAH)

Iceland Gull – single 2nd-winter over Clachtoll, 25th March (DAH). This is most likely the same bird that has been in Lochinver for a few months now.

Black Guillemot – 7 Clashnessie Bay, 25th March (DAH)

Curlew – pair calling over Elphin, 24th March (Rosie Christmas)

Goldeneye – single 1st-winter male Loch na Claise, 24th March (DAH)

Pied Wagtail – 9 all males Balchladich, 24th March (DAH)

Turnstone – 32 Bay of Culkein, 24th March (DAH)

Common Gull – 63 Bay of Culkein, 24th March (DAH)

Teal – two pairs on a lochan Badnaban, 23rd March (Les and Liz Pearce)

Peregrine – over Clashmore, 22nd March (Howard and Julie Grey)

Treecreeper – single Culag Woods, 22nd March (DAH)

Peregrine – female over Culag Woods, 22nd March (DAH)

Goldfinch – 2 Culkein Drumbeg, 22nd March (DAH)

Hen Harrier – male seen on two occasions, Clachtoll, 18th March (John Town)

Eider – pair Loch Inver, 18th March (DAH)

Iceland Gull – single 2nd-winter Culag Park, Lochinver, 18th March (DAH)

Bar-tailed Godwit – single bird still present Bay of Culkein, 17th March (DAH)

Turnstone – 32 Bay of Culkein, 17th March (DAH)

Wheatear – single Stoer, 15th March (Howard Grey). Our first 2014 record, unless you know otherwise! Last year it was 5th April before our first record, which was much later than we expect.

Little Grebe – single Loch an Aigeil, 15th March (Howard Grey)

Reed Bunting – 3 (2 male 1 female) All Abilities Path Little Assynt, 10th March (Sarah Corkish)

Pied Wagtail – 3 males Oldany Farm, 10th March (DAH)

Mistle Thrush – 4 Culkein Drumbeg, 10th March (DAH)

Skylark – 22 Culkein Drumbeg, 10th March (DAH)

Turnstone – 16 Bay of Culkein, 9th March (DAH)

Great Northern Diver – single on Loch an Ordain (NC0625), 7th March (AS) Photo Gallery – Birds

Lapwing – 16 Balchladich, 7th March (Howard Grey)

Reed Bunting – pair in garden Culkein Drumbeg, 6th March (Jim and Corinne France)

Mistle Thrush – single bird singing loudly Culkein Drumbeg, 6th March (DAH)

Great-northern Diver – Lochinver harbour, 5th March (AS)

Iceland Gull – Lochinver harbour, 5th March (AS)

Teal – pair at Loch an Ordain, 5th March (AS)

Reed Bunting – 2 pairs Inchnadamph, 4th March (Helen Morrison)

Pied Wagtail – sighting from Inchnadamph, 4th March (Helen Morrison)

Peregrine – single near Ledmore Quarry, 4th March (AS)

Whooper Swan – single Loch na Claise, 4th March (DAH)

Teal – 13 (5 males) Loch na Claise, 4th March (DAH)

Goldeneye – 3 (2 males) Loch na Claise, 4th March (DAH)

Tufted Duck – 12 (5 males) Loch na Claise, 4th and 9th March (DAH)

Starling – 154 Balchladich, 4th March (DAH)

Fulmar – total c85 on water, flying and on cliffs to north of Point of Stoer, 4th March (DAH)

Puffin – 2 winter adults off Rubh’an Dunain, 4th March (DAH)

Skylark – 23 Culkein Stoer and 4 Balchladich, 4th March (DAH)

Lapwing 2 Culkein Stoer and 13 Loch na Claise, 4th March (DAH)

Black Guillemot – 5 off Bay of Culkein, 4th March (DAH)

Bar-tailed Godwit – our single wintering bird still showing well in with 37 Oystercatcher Bay of Culkein, 4th March (DAH)

Ringed Plover – 19 Bay of Culkein, 4th March (DAH)

Turnstone – 33 Bay of Culkein, 4th March (DAH)

Goosander – 7 Loch Awe, 3rd March (AS). This sighting was of 6 males displaying to a single female.

Redwing – single bird feeding with 2 Song Thrush Culag Park, Lochinver, 3rd March (DAH)

Greenfinch – 9 Culkein Drumbeg, 3rd March (DAH)

Black-throated Diver – single Loch Awe, 2nd March (Viv Halcrow)

Little Grebe – single Loch Ruighean an Aitinn, Drumbeg, 2nd March (DAH)

Goldeneye – a pair Loch Ruighean an Aitinn, Drumbeg, 2nd March (DAH)

Goldfinch – 9 Achmelvich bridge, 2nd March (DAH)

Whooper Swan – 21 flying high and north-west, 2nd March (Howard and Julie Grey). While we had some spring migrants arrive during the last week it looks like our winter visitors are also making a move.

Lesser Redpoll – 60+ Culkein Drumbeg, 1st March (DAH)

Lapwing – 8 on crofts Clachtoll, 1st March (AS)


Common Carder bumblebee – single on heather in garden Clashmore, 30th March (Frances Mackenzie)

Lesser Celandine – many in flower on bank at Lochinver cemetery, 26th March (DAH)

Small Tortoiseshell butterfly – single flying near Lochinver cemetery, 26th March (DAH)

Harbour Porpoise – 20 metres off split rock Clachtoll, 25th March (DAH)

Otter – male feeding Clashnessie Bay, 25th March (DAH)

Small Tortoiseshell butterfly – single flying at Ardvar, 24th March (Beccy Garvie)

Sperm Whale – a dead male, measuring approximately 14 metres in length, was stranded on Balchladich beach on 18th March and this is the first such recorded stranding in Assynt. Photo Gallery – Marine with a fuller account is available on ‘News’.

Primrose – plant in flower in valley of Glac Fhearna (NC0832), 16th March (Ian and Pat Evans)

Slow-worm – 2 under old flooring material on peat track near Loch Eileanach, 16th March (Ian Evans/Gordon Rothero). Photo Gallery – Amphibians and Reptiles.

Slow-worm – single male near Inverkirkaig, 9th March (Clarinda). Photo Gallery – Amphibians and Reptiles.

Frog Spawn – four clumps in roadside ditch near Polchaple, Culkein Drumbeg, 1st March (DAH)

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Recent Sightings

Manx Shearwater

27 birds off Bay of Clachtoll (DAH) (16/06)

Harbour Porpoise

Mother and calf off Stoer Head Lighthouse (DAH) (15/06)

Small Magpie moth (Anania hortulata)

Single moth in garden, Culkein Drumbeg (DAH). This is only the second ever record of this micro moth in the West Sutherland recording area, VC108. The first record was on 1st June this year in the garden of the County Moth Recorder in Melvich on the north coast. However, this does make it the first ever record for Assynt. Photo Gallery - Moths. (14/06)

Golden Plover

Eight birds over Clachtoll (DAH) (13/06)


Single bird flying over garden, Ardvar (Beccy Garvey) (12/06)

Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary

Single butterfly, Nedd (Stefan Taylor) (12/06)

Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary

Single butterfly recently emerged at Glen Leraig (AS) (11/06)

Barn Owl

Single bird hunting over croft land, near Stoer primary school (Jane Livingstone) (11/06)