Sunday, 3 April 2016

Hi ho, hi's off to work I go...

The Mull of Galloway with the Isle of Man in the distance (photo Laura Shearer)
Heading back to work on the Mull of Galloway, my mind was swirling with images of all the amazing wildlife sightings I had in 2015. Even with high hopes I was not prepared for the amazing spectacle of feeding Harbour Porpoise only 15 minutes into the new season! Performing my usual loop around the reserve I caught a glimpse of some fins underneath the Foghorn. Dashing down for a closer look it was obvious the pod were feeding along the tidal race where the gulf stream meets the tides from Luce Bay. Over 20 porpoise were seen for over 40 minutes however I only managed to capture a few pics and videos before my camera battery died- doh!

Harbour Porpoise- Mull of Galloway (photo Laura Shearer)
Elsewhere the Guillemots, Razorbills, Black Guillemots, Kittiwakes and Shags are busy reinforcing their pair bonds as the seabird breeding season begins. Preening and nest building, its a busy time of year as they slowly settle onto the cliff ledges to nest.
Razorbills pairing up as the seabird nesting season begins (photo Laura Shearer)
Around the reserve, various migrant birds have been recorded including Snipe, Jack Snipe, Sand Martins, House Martins and Swallows- spring is on its way! The star of the show at the minute though are the pair of Stonechats singing and displaying around the RSPB visitor centre- I have an office with a view!

Female Stonechat- Mull of Galloway (photo Laura Shearer)
After work I've been birding around the Rhins of Galloway, checking out the Geese and Swans that are on the move. The highlight of my week came from a walk down a local glen as a friend and I came across a very noisy bird calling from behind some shrubs. As we approached it shot off- it was a Ring Ouzel! A good record for Dumfries and Galloway and an excellent record for the Rhins! What a great start to my 2016 season!

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