May 31, 2024

Yellow crowned Night Heron photo gift

 So your in a dark riverside lane before light , its lightly lit and your trying to watch a super rare Yellow crowned Night Heron as it preys on Crayfish, looking, watching through bins or a scope, there is just no light to shoot a camera

It becomes a waiting game....

 As you follow the bird, you just dont expect it to fly upstream toward you, land then walk around on river rocks that the morning light is shining on through the tree cover in front of your eyes and force you to take off a 1.4 converter as its just to close to full frame..

Yellow crowned Night Heron -Belcarra Mayo Ireland

 SO..A Yellow crowned Night Heron has been found in a creek in a small village of Belcarra.

An American Species thst has crossed the Atlantic Ocean. Awsome

There was all sorts of logistics, reasonability, hurdles to overcome to make it up to Mayo to see this exceptional bird. So myself and my son left home at 2am to be on-site in Belcarra before light, after all it is a Night Heron.

4.15 in the dark with no one atound we walked onto the Riverwalk looking up-stream in the dark when the bird jumped down out of the tree onto a rock in the river only a couple of metres away and proceeded to walk the opposite bank in front of us but really quite hard to see in the dark .It felt kinda cosmic and a unique experience to be in the dark with a Yellow crowned Night Heron, and believe me they are very active in the dark
As the light came up we were joined by 2 Dublin birders and a few locals that were showing massive interest and the village overall was impressive..... after a bit the Heron moved down to the river bridge where it stood on a log below for over an hour not doing much and seemed ready to roost for the day.
8:15 we headed for breakfast and we were back on the road home delighted in what we had seen.

More photos

May 14, 2024

Greenland Wheatear pushing through at Clahane

 This stand out Greenland type Wheatear has been hanging around the river entry area at corner in Clahane for about a week, and will probably push through with west coast with the last of the |Waders such as Whimbrel , Dunlin and Purple Sandpipers

May 2, 2024

Grasshopper Warblers incoming

The shrilling wanndering repetant call of the Grasshopper Warbler can be heard in all the right places such as bogs ,Tussock grass fields to low forestry. 
Now is the time to see them as you can hear them before they go quiet and low into the undergrowth.
A couple of photos this week from Dugmore beach, Ballyea forestry and Doonagore bog


April 29, 2024

The annual squabble

 Its a time old tradition that come the end of April the Cuckoos presence causes the local birds such as this Meadow Pipit to squabble with it.

Instict knows that the Cuckoo is a threat.

This annual drama played out at Doonagore bog

April 20, 2024


 Its the 1st day of sun in what feels like years , an early local walk into Ballyea forest plantation for singing birds

It was the 1st day of the Cuckoo calling and a reason to keep walking

The countryside abounds in song , the warbling melody of the Blackcap can be heard in what seems every available thicket , woodland and orchard out here in west Clare

April 15, 2024

Ringed Rock Pipit still at Clahane

 I was about when these birds at Clahane were being caught and ringed so I tend to look out for them.

This one caught my eye as to the brown that was showing through its wing feathers and its one of the ringed Rockies

then realising that ive not published photos taken earlier 25/3/2014 , so