By John Holloway
Well, not many this month – ‘scraping the barrel’ comes to mind – but there were a few unusual sightings, including a Chiffchaff in the ‘Castle’ drive on 1st Nov.;
a Lesser Redpoll in the tiny garden at Park Cottage on 2nd Nov
followed by three Brambling for a few days mid-month – one a ‘bright’ male.
Duck have been returning to the Matpow Loch – a few Goldeneye and Gadwall included, and there have been several sightings of Herons by the lochs and along the shoreline.
Donald Omond has once again contributed the majority of ‘wildfowl’ sightings, the most interesting during the last four weeks or so have been – 270 Barnacle Geese near Holland, and 24 Whooper Swans nearby.
A huge flock of 800 Golden Plover have been seen regularly in the Banks area and among them were at least 50 Turnstones and one (male) Ruff, the latter rather hard to find!
Small numbers of Redwing (90 max) have been seen daily and very few (less than 10) Fieldfares have been seen on any one day, but one species which has been recorded in larger numbers than usual is the Raven, with big gatherings towards the south end of the island regularly seen.
D.O. saw a total of well over 100 (singles and small groups) flying over in a southerly direction on one occasion in late afternoon – probably going to a roost on Stronsay or elsewhere ?
Thanks for all the calls. John Holloway
Republished in the Orkney News with the kind permission of the Stronsay Limpet.