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West Donegal

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Old Friday 12th September 2008, 19:26   #76
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Hoopoe

I was looking at the sligobirding.com site and am delighted to read that a Hoopoe was seen at Crohy Head Nr Dungloe. I've never managed to see a Hoopoe yet. Has anyone seen it recently? It was spotted on the 7th of September.

Richard

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Old Sunday 14th September 2008, 17:50   #77
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Derrybeg

Still remarkably few birds about. Saw large flocks of Starling at Magheragallon. Also a few Meadow Pipit and Linnet. Looking forward to the return of the Brent.

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Old Sunday 14th September 2008, 19:31   #78
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Went on Pelagic out of Magheraroarty. Saw Storm Petrel, Bonxies, Sooty Shearwater, Manx Shearwater and my first Leach,s Petrel.
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Old Monday 15th September 2008, 10:48   #79
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Tory Island again this weekend. My legs will take a week to recover! A lot more migrants about this weekend. Lesser Whitethroat, Greenland Redpoll, Fem/imm Pied Flycatcher, 2 White Wagtails, juvenile Merlin, 2/3 Willow Warblers, 2/3 Chiffchaffs, 5 Dunlin, 5/6 Wheatears. Also Kestrel, Choughs and the bizzare sight of a Snipe flying round and round the town yesterday morning and even landing on the rooves of some houses. Also had a nice view of a Corncrake in flight.
The Dolphin was showing well in the harbour and 2 Great Skuas passed over the ferry on the way out.

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Old Monday 15th September 2008, 12:21   #80
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That seems to have been a great trip Derek. What part of the island is best at the moment? I hope to get out on Saturday, weather permitting.

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Old Monday 15th September 2008, 13:36   #81
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Richard,
It is just a matter of checking any area with cover. The Pied Fly was in Grace's garden with a Chiffchaff. The Lesser Whitehroat was at the back of the houses at the Football pitch. The Redpoll was found at the Football pitch but it was then flying all over the place and was very difficult to pin down. The White Wagtails were on the beach at the Harbour and the Willow Warblers were flitting about the gardens at West Town. The Corncrake was in the big nettel patch at the back of West Town.
Good luck if you go.

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Old Monday 15th September 2008, 19:57   #82
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Thanks Derek,

I'm watching the forecast hoping for a relatively decent weekend.

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Old Saturday 20th September 2008, 15:41   #83
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Not West Donegal but...

I was planning to go to Tory today but a friend said there was reports of a White Tailed Eagle at Myroe Co Derry. Thankfully I was easily persuaded.
See photo.

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Old Saturday 27th September 2008, 17:18   #84
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Large flock of Lapwing at Magheragallon today. A few Curlew and Oystercatcher too. No Brent sighted yet.

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Old Monday 29th September 2008, 12:40   #85
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Tory this weekend held a few migrants. A Garden Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, 2 Greenland Redpoll, 4/5 Chiffchaffs, 2/3 Willow Warblers,2 Blackcap, 6+ Wheatear, 3 White Wagtails, Buzzard, Merlin, Kestrel, 3 Golden Plover. 2 bonxie and 2 Arctic Skua on crossing.
Bloody Foreland also had a Garden Warbler. The Black Duck was still at Blanket Nook along with a Black Tern. There were two shooters there on Saturday. Does anyone know if they are allowed to shoot there, we thought it was a reserve? Ring Necked Duck at Inch Lake.

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Old Monday 29th September 2008, 12:45   #86
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Hi Derek,

Another good weekend on Tory!

Re Blanket Nook, I think shooting is banned there but I know they can shoot an hour after sunrise and an hour before sunset at Inch Lake. You could find out from Duchas as they have a ranger, Andrew Sproule who covers the area.

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Old Tuesday 30th September 2008, 09:12   #87
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Blanket Nook is a Wildfowl Sanctuary which means shooting is prohibited. I've sent on Andrew Speers number to Wilton.
I really can't understand how relatively quiet it was up on Tory this weekend considering the stuff that turned up even down here in Galway and the south coast over the weekend. Must be "mildly" frustrating considering all the work Wilton and yourself have put in this year. Hope October is more productive.

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Old Tuesday 30th September 2008, 10:00   #88
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Hello Dermot,
Thanks, Andrew has spoken to Wilton and we have to ring him if we encounter shooters again. The shooters legged it after Wilton shouted a mouthful of abuse across the water, but i am sure they will return. I have also seen them shooting at Inch in the morning well after an hour after sunrise. I just can't see what the attraction is with that sport.
I personally am very dissapointed with the return from Tory and Inch/Blanket Nook this September. There was the usual talk in the club on Saturday night about the merits of Tory Island v Cape Clear v Galway etc etc and i will think long and hard about next year in September the only thing i am ruling out at this stage is Rathlin Island! But i am finished with Tory for this autumn. I think there is still time for Inch/Nook to come good!

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Old Tuesday 30th September 2008, 12:58   #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DEREK CHARLES View Post
Hello Dermot,
I personally am very dissapointed with the return from Tory and Inch/Blanket Nook this September. There was the usual talk in the club on Saturday night about the merits of Tory Island v Cape Clear v Galway etc etc and i will think long and hard about next year in September
Derek
Fair play to you both for giving it such a good thrashing over the last couple of years. I have only been on Tory once...its a desolate place. It must be the lack of cover or something...but the birds just dont seem to hang around.
Personally I prefer the 'tried and tested' Cape the second week in October usually has about 15-20 birders, so at least if you miss a bird there is a good chance of someone else finding it. Not very pioneering..I know but your fairly sure of something decent either on Cape or a short twitch away.As George Lee might say " Your guaranteed some kind of return for your investment"
Fair play to you Dermot for hacking around Inishmore. I suppose you have come up with the goods (Blackpoll and REV)? so at least theres some incentive..still I would not like to cover it on my own. Inishbofin is a nice size with a bit of cover. I think AmcG has hit the jackpot there.

Derek.What about Firkeel in September?I know it gets some coverage late September/October.Although its a bit of a hike for you lads.

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Old Tuesday 30th September 2008, 13:12   #90
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Shooting is allowed at Inch alright. Something like 3 times a week. Its well regulated by the local shooting clubs (plural!). However with no locals at Nook it can be more prone to poaching.

P.s. the two Inishmore REV's were found by Tony Mee (1995?) and Sean Doherty 2000 (hard to believe the Blackpoll was eight years back now!). As I said on the Galway Patch page there will be a bit of friendly rivalry between Inishmore and Inishboffin next week!

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Old Tuesday 30th September 2008, 14:38   #91
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Hello Peter.
No doubt the lack of cover has an effect on numbers of migrants that Tory attracts. What we would give for one or two really good gardens! But it must be remembered that Tory has produced the goods in the past and no doubt will again. The Whites Thrush could just as easily have been found on Tory or Inishmore this weekend but the Gods put it on Inishboffin. It might well be that Inishboffin will produce a run of good birds, only time will tell.Like a lot of islands it depends on the coverage it recieves.
Cape is brilliant, without a doubt and if i had a spare week i would go there every year. But i can only manage weekends at the present time so Tory is the best bet for me.
Let me also point out that Inishboffin is not AMG's island and that birders can and should go there as well.
You are right that Firkeel gets covered every day for 3 or 4 weeks around this time. It is too much of a trek for us for a weekend visit. Achill Island is a possibilty however and i may take a look over the next couple of weekends.
Good luck to all the rarity hunters over the next few weeks!

Derek
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Old Sunday 12th October 2008, 19:16   #92
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Magheragallon Derrybeg

Small flock of Common Sandpiper on the estuary. Oystercatcher, Curlew, Herring Gull.

Small numbers of Linnet and Meadowpipit. No sign of the Brent yet.

Does anyone know if the Brent have arrived at Ballyness Bay yet?

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Old Saturday 18th October 2008, 15:17   #93
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Blanket Nook & Inch

Blanket Nook. Plenty of Whoopers & Greylag. Large numbers of Lapwing, Golden Plover.

Saw the Black Duck and brilliant close up views of a Slavonian Grebe feeding near the shore.

Moving on to the Inch hide, large numbers of Whoopers and Lapwing. Good numbers of duck including Scaup, Pochard, Goldeneye, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Widgeon and Teal.

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Old Tuesday 21st October 2008, 07:33   #94
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Inch Lake

A new hide is under construction as is a fine steel footbridge. The facilities at Inch Lake are dramatically improving. Its great to see this at such a difficult economic time.

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Old Wednesday 22nd October 2008, 18:11   #95
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Hopefully will be up at Sheskinmore next weekend. Full report to follow...
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Old Sunday 26th October 2008, 12:45   #96
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Inch Lake

After yesterday's storm I took a run down to Inch Lake this morning. Relatively dissapointing as the water level has risen significantly from last Saturday. Most of the ducks are pushed over towards the far side, numbers are well down as are the Whoopers. Got some good photos of a Mallard family with drakes displaying. Moved round to the road causway, however not a lot of activity other than a Mute Swan with 4 young ones.

Really will have to travel with the 500mm lens attached and ready on the camera. At Bridgend a Buzzard landed on the hedge on other side of the road. As you might guess, it had risen by the time the lens came out of the rucsac and fumbelled its way onto the camera. Got one reasonable flight shot, but it needs a little Photoshopping before I post it.

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Old Sunday 26th October 2008, 15:38   #97
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Buzzard at Bridgend Co Donegal

Wish I had the camera ready 2 mins earlier!
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Old Sunday 26th October 2008, 20:59   #98
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Swan Family Inch Lake

Inch Lake today
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Old Friday 31st October 2008, 05:49   #99
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I'm heading for Gweedore tomorrow. Hope to do Ballyness Bay, the Brent should be there by now. Found Otter tracks along the dunes when I was there in August.

Has anyone anything unusual to report for West Donegal recently? It looks like a dry weekend for a change.

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Old Friday 31st October 2008, 15:44   #100
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Inch Lake

Simply brilliant weather at Inch Lake today. Moderate numbers of Whoopers. Goldeneye, Widgeon, Tufted, Mallard, Teal, Lapwing (large flock flying), Pink Foot Geese, Greylag. Saw a flock of 50-75 Fieldfare. Very difficult to photograph, they kept moving on to the next trees.

If the lake would fall a bit we would have better numbers and closer to the hide.

I was talking to a group of men fixing the path. They say that they will be putting a path all the way round the lake. That should improve access as long as the dog lovers don't scare off the more timid water fowl. New hide is now open.

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