Sunday, March 25, 2018

Long-tailed Duck

This immature male Long-tailed Duck has been feeding in Kilkee Bay for over a week now.  He is obviously getting lots of food from the bed of the sandy bay. I do not get very many opportunities to photograph this sea duck, as the majority of birds are normally miles out to sea, and in rough weather.

 Long-tailed Duck at Kilkee Bay John N Murphy

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

American Herring Gull

I made it back to Kilkee early this morning to see the American Herring Gull Larus argentatus smithsonianus , found two days ago by Niall Keogh and Brian Power,  before departing to head to work in south Waterford.  Gull numbers were low along the seafront and only a handful of immatures were gathering at the river outflow. There was no sign of the bird, so I had to go up town to John Nolan at Nolan's Deli, for a coffee and to secure a bag of stale bread to chuck out to attracted the gulls down.   Within minutes birds were wheeling about and just like magic the smith's appeared in the dull early morning light from some location in the middle of Kilkee high street. This is a second county record. It has been ten years since the first appeared brifly back near Cloghaun Lough where Finbarr McGabhann and myself managed to locate a bird in fields with a dozen Herring Gulls, and managed to snap off about three shots out the car window before that bird vanished out of sight.  See last shot below.

Immature American Herring Gull at Kilkee John N Murphy
Immature American Herring Gull at Loop Head in 2008 John N Murphy

Monday, March 12, 2018

Otter on the Slaney

This Otter was actively feed along the banks of the River Slaney last week south of Enniscorthy Town. in Wexford.

Dog Otter John N Murphy

Friday, March 2, 2018

Iceland Gull & Eel

This 2CY Iceland Gull was at the Community Hall at Lady's Island Lake on Thursday.  It managed to dig this Eel out of the muddy sand where it struggled for some time to wolf it down.  The Eel gave a good fight, but the gull was far too powerful and eventually gulp him down.  Nice tasty meal.

Iceland Gull eating Eel John N Murphy

Black-tailed Godwits scrap

When I was in Wexford on Thursday I visited Lady's Island on my way home where Black-tailed Godwits were very busy feeding in the frozen muds of the lake edges.  As you can see from the pictures below, many of the birds were not too happy to be sharing feeding areas with their neighbours, as the battle for food was intense due to freezing conditions.
 Black-tailed Godwits at Lady's Island John N Murphy