Monday, June 05, 2023

πŸ“– 🏴󠁧󠁒󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Ythan Estuary ~ 31/05/2023

🏴󠁧󠁒󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Wednesday 31st May 2023 ☁️ 8C ~ Wind NE @ 3MPH ~ Unfortunately, I haven't had many opportunities for birding since returning from Aviemore last month. Nonetheless, I plan to make a concerted effort to do so once things settle down.

Six of ten Black-tailed Godwits from Inch Point on a gloomy morning.

On May 31st, I did manage to spend a morning exploring the Ythan Estuary. A high-pressure system has recently controlled the weather, resulting in glorious conditions throughout most of the country but here on the northeast coast high pressure usually means cloud. Recently, there has been a consistent occurrence of cloud cover during the late afternoon that continues into the late morning. The mornings have been quite chilly, with temperatures in the daytime not exceeding 18C.

Little Stint from Inch Point

As the tide rolled in, I made my way to Inch Point. I was delighted to spot a healthy population of Ringed Plovers, double-figure Dunlin, and even a few Sanderlings. Additionally, I also noted ten Black-tailed Godwits and a lone Little Stint.

Osprey ~ Fishing over the Ythan.

I went for a walk at Newburgh, down to the estuary mouth and back to the 'Tin Hut'. While walking, I came across many Common Eiders, including some with their young. I also saw around 20 Goosanders and the usual abundance of Grey Seals in the area. However, despite reports of a King Eider sighting, supposedly a different drake than the one that usually visits in the spring, I was unable to spot him.

Two Arctic Terns take a breather from fishing

At the ternary, I observed a high level of activity with the presence of all four regular tern species. While the majority comprised Sandwich Terns and Arctic Terns, I was able to spot a few Common Terns and a handful of Little Terns by the time I departed.

A trio of Avocets ~ Quite the rarity for Aberdeenshire!

When I got back to the parking, I had news that three Avocets had been seen at the Waulkmill Hide. It only took me five minutes to drive there and I was lucky enough to witness all three, which is a rare occurrence in northeast Scotland.

I wish the lighting was better, more pictures from the visit!

Avocets take flight as another Osprey passes overhead ~ soon returning to feed.

Little Tern

Sandwich Tern

Common Tern

Common Tern

An Osprey sets the many waders off (mostly Ringed Plover

Sandwich Tern

Arctic & Sandwich Terns resting up!

Smart looking Dunlin ~ From the 'Tin Hut'

An ever-inquisitive Grey Seal