I found myself lying in the South Bay at St. Mary's yesterday afternoon studying every single pipit on the beach, after regularly reading about Gary's pipits at Newton. Fascinating stuff, and as Paul M said, "nothing like a bit of 'littoralis' action in Mid-March!". I managed to get 2 'littoralis' Rock Pipits, 3 Rock Pipits and a Meadow Pipit on the seaweed all at 10ft range. Here are some photos:
One of Two 'Scandinavian' Rock Pipits. Note the overall light (peachy) colouring, strong supercilium and much whiter outer tail feathers.
Saturday saw me and a few mates twitching the wintering Hoopoe in Dumfries. We didn't see it in 4 hours in summary! However we did get a drake Smew and Slav Grebe on Loch Soulseat. Just before we left, another mate of mine rang me to inform me that the unringed adult Red-Breasted Goose was showing at Loaningfoot with Barnacles again, and after considering a twitch of this bird last weekend, we soon left the Hoopoe site to look for it. After about an hour of looking from West Preston Farm, we finally picked it up in the flock, mega! It was a superb bird and one that I'd been looking forward to seeing for a long time!
Red-Breasted Goose (Copyright - Andrew Kinghorn) Then Sunday had me up at East Chevington after some Redpolls! 2 Mealies showed well on the feeders at the top end, and the Red-Necked Grebe was still present.
Comparison between Mealy (Right) and Lesser (left)
After visiting the patch this morning and seeing very little apart from 2 Snow Buntings North, A phone call from Simon P and Alan C this evening had me panicking and sprinting from my house to the South Bay in 5 minutes flat, the words 'Juvenile Iceland Gull in the South Bay showing well' was all I needed to hear before I was out the house and within 5 minutes I was watching it, what a beast!! LONG overdue patch tick after missing a couple in the past, I was delighted with this one! Thanks to all that got in touch to let me know about it.
Iceland Gull Other sightings from the past few days: