I have been working up the North west over the last few days and have come across Common Eiders at Mullaghmore in Sligo (21) and at Malin Head (12) in County Donegal. The close shots are all from Malin Head and the distant flock shots were further out to sea in Sligo.
This adult Rosy Starling was at Derrymore National School at Kerry Head from 11th to 13th June. It was in the small playing pitch of to the back of the school when I photographed it with a small flock of Common Starlings and was wary, feeding mainly in close to the tall uncut grass at the edge of the hedge around the pitch.
Rose-coloured Starling at Kerry Head John N Murphy
As a trainee ringer, I spent summers catching Sedge Warblers at the Shannon Airport Lagoon under the supervision of my trainer Philip Brennan. Occasionally Phil would catch the odd Reed Warbler and we would get to see it in the hand. This was my first introduction to this species. These birds were first caught and ringed at the Lagoon on 29th July 1979, when one juvenile was ringed with an adult the following day on 30th. These were the first North Munster records. Juveniles were subsequently caught and ringed on the following dates: one on 8th October 1983. One on 26th September, with another on 14th October 1985. At this time it was thought that birds could possibly have been breeding in the Lagoon, but with no solid evidence. Over the last week it has come to light that birds are breeding at the Shannon Airport Lagoon. There have been up to five singing males and birds were observed carrying food for young. Two nest sites locations have been confirmed with the possibility of more. These are the first confirmed breeding records for Clare (per JNM) Here are a few shots of birds from the lagoon.
Reed Warblers at the Shannon Airport Lagoon with one bird carrying food for young John N Murphy
An adult Sedge Warbler at the lagoon carrying food for young John N Murphy