May 25th   Leave a comment

I was out at Cambo this morning doing a reccy for a bird song walk on Sunday. It’s a bit later in the year than usual, but with the late spring everything was still singing. There was a spotted flycatcher in the parkland. A decade ago this would be a breeding bird, but these days it will almost certainly be a migrant left over from last weekend and off to Scandinavia any day soon. Even so it might be worth seeing if it is still around in a week or so. The park in front of the house at Cambo is perfect habitat for them.

There was a dead badger on the road between Cambo and Crail, probably hit last night. Not a very nice sight – this one was as big as a Labrador. Just like the barn owl of a few weeks ago, it is good to know they are around, but I wish I was seeing them alive.

Balcomie Beach was nearly perfect this afternoon. Sheltered from the south-westerly wind the temperature was up to 18 degrees. The only small flaw was the huge piles of seaweed washed up on the high tide line after gales of a couple of days ago. There was a dunlin perched on one of the mounds. It had the black belly and reddish brown back of a bird ready to breed. Perhaps it was only one two-day flight away from the Arctic and the start of its breeding season. Other birds still on their way north were about 50 common scoters a hundred meters out from the surf. Further out still was a big flock of arctic terns. A single wheatear along the airfield road was the only obvious songbird migrant left over from last week.

A dunlin in breeding plumage

A dunlin in breeding plumage

Posted May 25, 2013 by wildcrail in Sightings

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