Saturday, January 3, 2015

Stonechats & Rockies

I spent yesterday the 2nd January 2015 going through pipits and Stonechats on the shoreline at Clahane beach in Liscannor. This site has turned up Buff-bellied Pipit and Water Pipits in the past.  Unfortunately there were no interesting pipits there yesterday only the bog standard west coast Rock Pipits and plenty of Stonechats, all feeding on a hatch of flies along the road and in the decaying seaweed.
 Rock Pipits Anthus petrosus John N Murphy
Stonechats at Clahane John N Murphy

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Western Meadowlark

Meadowlarks are a common farmland bird in North America and are slightly larger than Starlings. They feed in open grass meadows similar to Skylark and pipit habitats. This Western Meadowlark was photographed North of Santa Barbara on the west coast of California during my visit there in November 2014.

Western Meadowlark John N Murphy

Say's & Black Phoebes

During our trip to California in November 2014 we came upon numerous Phoebes.  I had seen Black Phoebe in Costa Rica before but Say's was a new world thick for me.  Black Phoebes always remind me of a cross between a Pied Wagtail and Black Redstart in their appearance, behaviour and habitat choice, whereas Say's remind me of a cross between Spotted Flycatcher and Redstart for much of the same reasons as black. 
 Say's Phoebe a new species on my trip to California John N Murphy

 Black Phoebe a common bird along the California west coast John N Murphy

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Laughing Gull

I was down in Cork City on the 30th December and made the short trip out to Ballycotton to catch up with the Laughing Gull that has been present there for the last year.  The bird spent much of its time flying up and down the pier wall fishing out over the sea.

Laughing Gull at Ballycotton John N Murphy

Tropical Galway

I was in Galway on the 29th December to search for gulls at Nimmo's Pier along the waterfront.  Now I know that Galway has a large Brazilian population, and I know that in recent years many good rare Trans-Atlantic vagrants have made it across the to this part of Ireland, but I was not aware that Global warming had reached this part of the west of Ireland so quickly.  On the main road between Oranmore and Galway City I spotted this Amazonian Blue and Yellow (Gold) Macaw.  I'm sure there is some unhappy owner missing this fine creature.  I checked on the net to find that these magnificent birds can be purchased for up to two grand.  I would be pissed if my expensive Christmas present flew the coop especially at this price.  Anyway I got to the city and managed to see three Ring-billed Gulls on the slip at Nimmo's (one first-winter and two adults) as seen below.
 Blue and Yellow Macaw just outside Galway City John N Murphy
 Adult Ring-billed Gulls at the Slipway at Nimmo's Pier John N Murphy

First-winter Ring-billed Gull on the slipway in Galway John N Murphy