|1st Winter Drake Goldeneye
Assuming it's the same bird I've had more sightings of a Kingfisher, which I first noted on January 13th, still preferring to fish on the small burn next to the quarry access road. My visit on February 2nd produced the first returning Tufted Ducks of the year with six, this also coincided with my highest count of Goldeneye with seven, one of which was the ever-present first winter drake, now beginning to look the part.
|Snow Bunting showing a ring on the bottom right leg.
On the coast, an enjoyable but quiet walk birding-wise around Forvie Sands on February 3rd was brightened when seven Snow Buntings dropped down in front of me as I reached the north end of the beach. One bird, in particular, was ringed but unfortunately, I couldn't get close enough to secure any better images before they took flight.
|Parrot Crossbill ~ Invercauld
On January 28th Dazza and I spent the day walking in the Cairngorms at Invercauld in beautiful conditions, managing the above record shot of a male Parrot Crossbill. Also of note year ticks of Red Grouse, Red Deer and Mountain Hare. On the way home we pulled in near Dinnet when we noticed a large group of raptors circling. Incredibly all Red Kites and we counted eighteen but there were certainly more!