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Old Tuesday 19th May 2009, 12:55   #1
Pariah
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Wexford birding

Hard to believe there isnt allready a thread with so many contributors visiting the area on a regular basis.
So i said id start one off.

After a hard winter with the usual suspects showing up in the form of canada and snow goose, smew, green winged teal, cattle egrets,water pipits and a stop in glossy ibis, the spring kicked off well with a couple of subalpine warblers, hobby and good numbers of migrants.

Caught up with the badius shrike on sunday, followed by a seawatch producing 4 poms, 4 arctic skuas and good numbers of stormies off carnsore.

The adult forsters tern was over the east end pond at tacumshin along with 2 drake garganey.

Migrants around carnsore included yellow wagtail, spotted flycatcher, blackcap and whitethroat.

A bonxie and an adult black tern were off carnsore on monday morning, with a first summer little gull present on the south slob along with hundreds of swifts, sadly all common.

Owen
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Old Sunday 24th May 2009, 23:28   #2
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No sign of the badius Woodchat Shrike at Rathangan today after searching this morning and this afternoon.

Great Saltee was quiet (see pic attached!) with 1 Garden Warbler, 1 Grasshopper Warbler, 2 Spotted Flycatchers, 2 Wheatears & c.half a dozen phylloscs the only migs of note. 7 Chough & 2 Peregrines there also. Still nice to get out to the island all the same and see the seabird colony (now flush with colour from flowers).

Few Dunlin on Tacumshin this eve but plenty of BTGodwits & some Knot. The adult summer Forster's Tern made an appearance at the East End Pool at 17:54 until 18:01 when it caught a fish and headed for Lady's Island. A 1st-summer Arctic Tern, 1st-summer Peregrine, 3 male & 1 female Garganey there also.

Not much off Carnsore except for year-ticking a Storm Petrel.

See ya,
Niall
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Old Monday 25th May 2009, 10:01   #3
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Anyone know the date when the two large Canadas left the Slobs? Pressumeably they left with the GWF's?

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Old Monday 25th May 2009, 10:59   #4
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Hi Derek,

The 2 Canadas & c.40 GWFGeese were present on the North Slob up until the 3rd week of April per. Wexford Naturalist's Field Club: http://www.wexfordnaturalists.com/gaggle.php

See ya,
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Old Monday 25th May 2009, 11:10   #5
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Thanks for link Niall, never seen that one before.
Hope your keeping well, nice photos from Saltee.

all the best

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Old Wednesday 27th May 2009, 13:58   #6
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Does anybody know the boat times to Saltee? and if it goes during the week . I am going to wexford for a week in early June and would like to make a day trip to the island. Black-headed Bunting or Bee-eater or something semi exotic would be nice. I have had a couple of trips out there bur never found anything really good. Tree Pipit, Nightjar and Quail about the best. Missed two trips which included Woodlark and Nightingale. I reckon I am due some thing good!!! Its been a long long winter

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Old Wednesday 27th May 2009, 16:58   #7
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Im open to correction peter, but i dont think there are "boat times". You ring the boatman and arrange to get out. At least thats how it used to be. Havent been out there in donkeys mind.
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Old Thursday 28th May 2009, 11:55   #8
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Originally Posted by Peter Phillips View Post
Does anybody know the boat times to Saltee? and if it goes during the week . I am going to wexford for a week in early June and would like to make a day trip to the island. Black-headed Bunting or Bee-eater or something semi exotic would be nice. I have had a couple of trips out there bur never found anything really good. Tree Pipit, Nightjar and Quail about the best. Missed two trips which included Woodlark and Nightingale. I reckon I am due some thing good!!! Its been a long long winter
Hi Peter,

Declan Bates runs the boat out of Kilmore Quay to the Saltees, currently at 25euro a head for about 4-5 hours on the island.

At the weekend he runs trips from 10am and when the weather is fine he may do up to 5 or so runs out in a day.

His number is 0872529736 (N.B. don't ring him before 9am, especially on a Sunday!!!).

He will run chartered trips at any stage of the week if you can organise 10-12 people to fill the boat.

The family who own the island will be staying there for the June Bank Holiday weekend so there will be no access to the garden.

Lucky with your Quail, one was seen there last Saturday and I went looking for it on Sunday with no joy (still a tick for me). Kieran Grace, who has done 110+ days on the island! has NEVER seen Quail there!

The island can be hard work, even when the weather looks promising. I have been visiting it every year since 1996 and I can tell you every good bird
I've seen there in those 13 YEARS: 2 Wood Warblers (on my first day on the island!), 2 Common Rosefinches (one of which was on my second day on the island!), 1 Subalpine Warbler, 1 Woodchat Shrike, 1 Lesser Whitethroat & 1 Marsh Harrier!!! Been out twice this year so far and have had nothing better than a Garden Warbler.

All the best,
Niall
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Old Thursday 28th May 2009, 17:00   #9
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I actually hate the saltees. Always a mig wasteland when i go out there! At least on the mainland you can mooch around a few spots. Hard to beat carnsore!

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Old Thursday 28th May 2009, 18:21   #10
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Hi
great to see a Wexford forum! I was half thinking of starting a "Wexford weekend forum" for all of us who get to go down the odd time with family in tow & escape for a bit of birding when we can. Always dread looking at Birdnews when I get back to dublin on the sunday night & see what I've missed...
Weekend gone there was 150+ manx shearwater (going west to east) and one arctic skua from 6.30am to 8am at Hook Head. Five whitethroats at Slade Lane and a few whimbrel and chough elsewhere on the head.
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Old Friday 29th May 2009, 12:18   #11
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Hi Peter

I tried to twitch both the Woodlark and the Nightingale at the time but dipped both.
Spring sucks big time!

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Old Friday 29th May 2009, 21:22   #12
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Hard going today in wex. A heavy mist was present most of the morning making birding difficult. This eventually burned off to be replaced by strong hazy sun.

A quail was an enjoyable find down the end of the sub alp lane on carnsore.

2-3 ad summer med gulls and 2 drake garganey were in the channel at the east end of tacumshin, with a few arctic, common and sandwich terns. No joy with the forsters but in sure its still around.

A first summer little gull was off nethertown.

No migs of note on carnsore itself.

Perhaps tomorrow.

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Old Saturday 30th May 2009, 06:51   #13
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Thanks for the response lads. I will give him a ring closer to the time. Failing a trip out,I will try Carnsore.
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Old Sunday 31st May 2009, 08:36   #14
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Saturday was pretty poor considering the winds involved.

The adult forsters did pop in and out of tacumshin mind, with several garganey also there.

The south slob had 4 1st summer little gulls and up to 20 med gulls of varying ages feeding on a ploughed field.

Red legged partridge here also.

Cahore has a leucistic grey heron which can cause cardiac arrest.

Managed to nip back up to wicklow and nab the hobby at black ditch...heard later a crane dropped in that night....feck.....

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Old Monday 1st June 2009, 15:58   #15
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Hi Owen,

Will be coming over for the Forsters Tern later this week, as it seems to be becoming more regular lately. Just hoping you could give me a run down of its habits, I get the impression it just pops in and out of East End Pool several times a day? I assume the pool isn't covered in all hours of daylight (we wil be giving it a full day), so assuming we spend the whole day there there's a good chance of seeing it?

Cheers

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Old Monday 1st June 2009, 16:52   #16
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Hi dan,

Yeah, i would say dawn till dusk would certainly gurantee a few sightings. It seems to prefer freshwater hunting and so heads for the pool. Wellies required if you want to get over to the pool itself. Be cautious however, other species of tern are also hunting the pool

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Old Tuesday 2nd June 2009, 19:39   #17
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Hi
Saw the Forster's tern on Saturday about 1pm. Flew in, got a fish first dive and flew off - 3mins tops.
3 first summer little gulls - one at the east end hawking insects and two on the shore of the main lake on the other side of the channel. Gargeney too.
First time i've been to Tacumshin. Feels a bit odd stomping round the habitat when you are used to RSPB managed reserves. Can only imagine what might be seen there with a few walkways and hides - or would that spoil it?.
Hundreds of painted ladies about at Hook Head.
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Old Tuesday 2nd June 2009, 19:49   #18
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Paul,

Wouldnt work at tac. The water level fluctuates with season and rainfall. Getting very high in winter. Any walkways would have to be at considerable height...making walkers very conspicuous to the birds.

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Old Wednesday 3rd June 2009, 09:54   #19
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Fair enough - though I'd say water levels would be managed in the UK too as part of a "comprehensive management system"...the mind shudders. Dare say the geology of the place would make water management impossible?
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Old Wednesday 3rd June 2009, 10:00   #20
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Well the fluctuating water level is part of the greatness of Tac.
In summer it goes down (usually) to the point where it becomes fantastic for migrating waders, especially the area of the patches and where the channel is crossed to sigginstown. In winter the water goes up, the ducks and swans come in. Its just the way it is and if it aint broke.......


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Old Saturday 13th June 2009, 14:48   #21
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9th June

I had my first visit to Tacumshin during the week when a family holiday brought us to Kelly’s Hotel in Rosslare.

I decided to do a tour of the hotspots and started at Tacumshin at 6.30 in the morning. It was difficult to find and an hour later (should have taken 20 minutes), I found myself at the white hole at the west end. I had checked the web the night before and was delighted to see that a White-winged Black Tern (east end pool) and Turtle Dove (Tomhaggard) had been seen in the area. The wetland looked fantastic and after Grey Heron at the car park the next birds was a calling Water Rail, two singing Reed Warbler (and a female type Marsh Harrier. It was a great start to the day. The west end reed bed was quiet and after getting lost again (checking every Collard Dove along the way) I eventually found the forgotten corner and the high car park over looking the east end pool. It was still early and the pool was very quiet. No sign of the White-winged Black Tern, Forster’s Tern, 2 Marsh Harriers, 2 Little Gulls or any of the 5 Garganey reported. I left after an hour or so a bit disappointed and headed back for breakfast. I had planned to go to Lady’s Island lake and on to Carnsore but decided to give the east end another go. On arrival I bumped into Dick Coombes who had the White-winged black Tern on the sand. After a few minutes the bird moved out over the pool and spend a half an hour or so at a time picking up insects off the blanket weed and would then go back and rest on the sand before continuing the routine for the entire day. We got fantastic views of the bird from the island for the next few hours. Three Garganey eventually swam into view and three Little Gulls where also feeding over the pond and a female type Marsh Harrier started hunting over the reeds. At one time I had all these species plus the White winged black Tern on view through my bins! It felt more like a wetland in southern Europe than Ireland. A fly over 2cy Med Gull and a calling Cuckoo added to scene.

The Forster’s Tern made two brief visits to the pool at about 16.30 and 18.00. As the evening started to close in we were joined by Paul Hillis and Sean Farrell and the White winged Black Tern was soaking up the last of the sun on the sand with up to eight first summer Little Gulls. At this point I had to leave.
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Old Saturday 13th June 2009, 15:07   #22
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10th/11th June

Having heard about a Hobby at tacumshin found shortly after I left the evening before I made an early morning dash for the east end.. The Collared Dove scrutiny paid off as I was driving down the lane to the east end when I noticed a dark dove on the wire. Sure enough it was a Turtle Dove! Maybe the same one from Tomhaggard a couple of days earlier. When I arrived at the high car park there was a nice 2cy Hobby hunting the marsh behind the pool. Returning later that day I met Shay Connolly and Paul Hillis. A few Little Gulls were all that was present

I managed to get out again the morning of the 11th. The pond was quiet so I had a wander aroud towards the forgotten corner. I got a glimse of a small falcon landing on the sand and sure enough it was a Hobby.This bird although not an adult had terracotta coloured britches and was different from the bird I had seen the day before. I believe Shay Connolly had two Hobby over the patches the night before. When I arrived back at the car I met Pat Brennan.He went searching for the Hobby.

All in all great few days.And now I know where it is...I will be back.The High car park at Tacumshin must rank along withe Bridges of Ross,Nimmos Pier and Cotters garden on Cape Clear as one of the best places observation points in the country.
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Old Saturday 13th June 2009, 16:54   #23
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The High car park at Tacumshin must rank along withe Bridges of Ross,Nimmos Pier and Cotters garden on Cape Clear as one of the best places observation points in the country.
Hear Hear!!!

Come mid-September there'll be more yank waders than you can shake an over-priced Austrian scope at!!!

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Old Monday 29th June 2009, 12:03   #24
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Dipidy Dip

Hi,

Made it down to Tac by 13:30 on Saturday hoping to see the Stilt Sandpiper...and there it was, gone!

Nor was there any sign of the female Little Ringed Plover or the 2 Marsh Harriers.

The ever present Forster's Tern was on show over the east end pool at 16:00 along with a 2cy Little Gull, an adult Med Gull & a singing Reed Warbler.

Checked the original Stilt Sand site at Seafield/Blackstone, The Cull but no luck there either.

C'mon September...

Niall
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Old Friday 7th August 2009, 16:00   #25
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morning at Tacumshin Friday 7th

Hi
Just in case anyone plans a visit this weekend, the water level at Tacumshin is very high. Very little shoreline exposed and pretty deep at the inlet near the high car park. I didn't fancy trying to cross it with knee high wellies! Nothing exposed round from the east end to the forgotten corner. Best bet might be to walk the shore from the white hole end?
Saw marsh harrier (over forgotten corner), heard water rail and saw a couple of med gulls and a 1st summer little gull.
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