Warning – Long Post!

I can’t believe how long it’s been since my last post! I must apologise for not updating Weekly Tweet & also for not checking the other blogs I follow!  Work / business commitments have taken over in the last few weeks & I’m ashamed to say I’ve not really been observing the garden as much as I’d like to!
However, a quick update is long overdue… in the last month activity has picked up and we’ve had Siskins, Chaffinches, Feral Pigeons and plenty of Sparrows.
The evenings are now filled with the chattering of House Martins and Swifts flying over the roofs and the chirping of baby Starlings in the eaves of the neighbours houses.  I love this time of year and can’t wait until we start getting the baby Sparrows & Starlings in the garden.
Another reason for the delay in posting is that we were on holiday last week in gorgeous County Kerry.  I love the South West of Ireland and certainly recommend the place we stayed (Inch Strand – where Ryans Daughter was filmed!).
The brilliant news is that we saw 4 new species that we’ve never seen before!
We took a trip to the Skelligs which was supposed to have Puffins running around your feet – we saw none! Until just before we left when one flew onto the island and landed rather clumsily under a rock!  I managed to take a shaky photo of 4 floating on the sea – I actually didn’t know what I was photographing as I was quite high up but am REALLY pleased they turned out to be Puffins!
Whilst on the Skelligs there was the unmistakable sound of a Wren singing it’s little heart out – I eventually found it perched on the edge of the cliff!
On leaving the island, the boat took us around Little Skellig – a huge Gannet colony – these are my favourite sea birds, I think they’re so graceful and beautiful with their golden caps! The photos aren’t brilliant as they were taken from the boat on an extremely choppy day (I’m not very good on boats!), but I think you can get the idea of how many Gannets are on there!
We had a regular visitor at our cottage of a Mistle Thrush every day (species No.2) which seemed to like the small lawn outside the front door!
Species number 3 was a Peregrine Falcon! Unfortunately I didn’t get any shots of this as it took us by surprise – we’d stopped at the side of a cliff to take some scenery photos (and also some of the chap below!), climbed down the grassy bank a bit and something took off from below the ledge – it circled above the sea then disappeared – it was definitely a Peregrine though, no mistaking the shape / colour!
Lastly species No. 4 were a pair of Choughs!  These were above us on a deserted beach digging around the grass / sand of the cliffs – they were gorgeous, so glossy. Photos aren’t the best I’m afraid!
So, May definitely started off well – unfortunately I didn’t see any new species for April but the 4 in May certainly made up for it!
I’ll try not to leave it so long before my next post and I’ll sort out some more photos of Kerry.
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7 Responses to Warning – Long Post!

  1. irishwildlifephotography says:

    I was on the Skelligs two weeks ago, it's a fantastic spot – I saw a few puffins disappearing down their burrows but too quick to photograph. The gannet colony is awesome though – I have a few pictures on my blog.

  2. ShySongbird says:

    What a lovely holiday you had, Sharon, I have seen quite a few mentions of Puffins on blogs just lately and I am very envious as I have always wanted to see them but never had the opportunity.

    Well done on the Choughs too, another bird I have never seen.

  3. Chris says:

    Congrats on all these new species. It is nice sometime to see something different and new and to be able to take pictures!

  4. The Early Birder says:

    I am delighted that you are seeing all these 'new' species at home and away. I bet you are really 'chuffed' to. FAB.

  5. drimnaghbirdwatch says:

    I love the photos of the Puffins and the Chough, never seen either and have always wanted to see a Chough – good for you.

  6. Jenny says:

    I can sympathise with you on the blog posts Sharon, it's so easy to let the days slide by,specialy when you have a lot of other 'stuff' going on! What a wonderful trip you had! Some quality birds. I've not seen chough for a couple of years now. I must try and make a trip to West Wales sometime this year!

  7. Phil says:

    You had a nice holiday break there Sharon. The countryside of Ireland is just so peaceful. How many gannets did you count?

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