March 9th   Leave a comment

Tree sparrow - easy to see at Kilrenny at the moment

Tree sparrow – easy to see at Kilrenny at the moment

Despite the continuing gale and cold two signs of spring. Frog spawn in Denburn (probably laid at the end of last week when it was admittedly a bit warmer) and the first lesser back-backed gull of the year off Castle Walk.

I walked around Kilrenny this afternoon to get some shelter from the wind. I was lucky enough to see a long-eared owl. They are great skulkers but one and possibly a second a bit later flushed from the dense birch and gorse scrub just to the north of Invergellie Wood. I had a brief view of the long orange and pale ginger speckled wings as they flew silently away into a denser bit of cover. A pair at this time of year might suggest possible breeding a bit later on. The habitat is not too bad for them there: dense marshy woodland to hide in with adjacent open areas to hunt in.

There are a couple of bird feeders that have been put out below the old railway bridge at Kilrenny. There were at least eight tree sparrows there today. Kilrenny is a great place to see tree sparrows and the feeders make it really easy. Just peer down from the railway bridge.

Long-eared Owl - one or maybe two at Kilrenny Common today

Long-eared Owl – one or maybe two at Kilrenny Common today

Posted March 9, 2013 by wildcrail in Sightings

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