Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Ed's Pelagic

Three weeks ago I secured the last place on Ed Carty's pelagic out of Dingle.  We departed at 8.00am last Tuesday morning, 27th August from Dingle Harbour ticking Fungi the Bottle-nosed Dolphin on the way out (as every good tourist does), to what were calm looking seas in Dingle Bay.  Two hours later and five miles north-west of the Blasket Islands it all began.  Manx and Sooty Shearwaters first appeared once the troughs started to deepen and after six hours on open sea and lots of chum later, we had managed to clock up the following; two adult Sabine's Gulls, 12 Great Shearwaters, 50 plus Sooty Shearwaters, one second year Pomarine Skua, five Bonxies, one blue Fulmar, 50 Storm Petrels, six or seven Minke Whales, lots of Common Dolphins and three to four Ocean Sunfish.  Very enjoyable even though the weather was misty in parts.

 Inistearacht Island, the most westerly cliffs of the Blaskets © John N Murphy
 One of 12 Great Shearwaters © John N Murphy
Blue Fulmar with Northern Fulmars © John N Murphy
Sooty Shearwater © John N Murphy
One of five Great Skuas (Bonxies) that arrived for the chum © John N Murphy
Pomarine Skua with badly abraided tail spoons © John N Murphy

 Adult Sabine's Gull catching a small sprat © John N Murphy
 Storm Petrel © John N Murphy

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Citrine Wagtail

Got close to one of the Citrine Wagtails in Tacumschin early this morning, but in the afternoon the two birds were fairly flighty.  Rough calculations in a conversation on the phone with Dermot Breen tonight makes these two birds only the 26th & 27th records for Ireland.

Immature Citrine Wagtail at Tacumschin, Wexford © John N Murphy

Little Stint

I was back in Wexford late yesterday evening and again this morning.  Got the Caspian Tern yesterday evening and clocked up the two Citrine Wagtails, Lesser Yellowlegs, two Buff-breasted Sandpipers, one Green Sandpiper, two Curlew Sandpipers and five Little Stints earlier today.  Another magical visit to Tacers.
Little Stint with Dunlin © John N Murphy

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Yellow Wagtail

This blue headed Yellow Wagtail has been in Tacumschin for the last two weeks.

Blue-headed Yellow Wagtail at Tacumschin © John N Murphy

Buff-breasted Sandpiper

Yet another trip to Wexford this year, yesterday 10th August where there were three adult Buff-breasted Sandpipers at Tacumschin, the blue headed Yellow Wagtail, a Little Stint and the hundreds of other supporting waders. One Gull-billed Tern was still lingering at Lady's Island and thousands of Terns were gathering at Nethertown beach. 

Adult Buff-breasted Sandpipers at Tacumschin, Wexford © John N Murphy

Sunday, August 4, 2013


Over a month ago I made a couple of visits to the Coronation Plantation in Wicklow.  There were numerous breeding pairs of Whinchats throughout the area and I spent a couple of hours early one morning trying to get close enough to grab a few shots.  They were very wary birds and not too confiding.  While there I came upon lots of Fallow Deer and a few foxes.  Lovely place.

Whinchat and Fallow Deer at Cornation Plantation, Wicklow © John N Murphy