December 20, 2015

GND B&W in the rain

A Great northern Diver was fishing of Seafield Pier.
The weather was again awful , windy ,no light . You could even get out of the car due to heavy rain.

December 7, 2015

Floods n waves n winds in Clare

Fast flowing water at Moanreel Cross

The Ennis to Ennistymon road flooded

November 22, 2015

Male Crossbill

I took another drive up the lanes to Rath again to see if there were any Crossbills still in the area. In a small spruce patch not far from where I observed them a few days ago ,18 Crossbills were high up with Siskins, Chaffinch and Greenfinch.
 A male bird was showing well out on a branch in the afternoon light.

November 20, 2015

Crossbills at Rath

Around my home during the day I noticed there seemed to be a lot of birds moving about ,small finch flocks , Blackbirds, Fieldare and Redwing.
Could be a good afternoon for Crossbills up the forestry...

 The first small flock of 6 Crossbill flew by at Gort Coirce with Redpoll ,1/2 hour later a Sparrowhawk soared over the Spruce forest and flocks of Crosssbill left the tree tops heading down hill. I followed in the car .4 more , then another 5.
Then a flock of 20 birds came into the trees and I was able to get good feeding views.
35 Crossbill in total for me.

Always a hard bird to photo as they are high up in cover,a tree or two in . Time to bring on th 3x crop video zoom.

November 17, 2015

Grey Phalarope

The Grey Phalarope has been at Liscannor Harbour now for 5 days, seeeing out the storm
Today it was feeding close to the walls. 
In between rain showers I waited on the steps.. the bird was pretty tame and came within a few feet away, bobbing about.
A small grey and white subject on a grey/ low light background proved a challenge to photo.

November 10, 2015

Harbour birding in Storm Abigail

Its been blowing a gale all night and morning.
I dropped into Liscannor Harbour to see what birds had come in off the ocean.
Plenty of Gulls were feeding in the wash at the harbour mouth , just out in the open water a few Great Northern Divers were catching crabs. Just out from them was a small Grey Phalarope spinning around in the choppy waters , keeping out the way of the Gull activity.
A colour ringed Oystercatcher was in the harbour

Great Northern Divers in the rain
The very small Grey Phalarope being surveyed by the Gulls
Colour ringed Oystercatcher

November 7, 2015

Hen Harrier - Lahinch Marsh

A Ring tail Hen Harrier hunting over Lahinch Marsh.
The bird was at quite a distance but allowed me to view it for nearly 1/2 hour as it moved around the marsh looking for prey.

November 6, 2015

Lahinch as good as it can be!

The next day;
As the mist began to arise in the morning it revealed overhead waves and perfect glass on a part of the reef that has not worked in a long while.
The swell was a touch bigger today around 2.8m and 13 second periods.
We were the first ones out at the spot.
The swell carried on through the day without any crowding , there was waves for all in a typical Irish manner.  
The evening session was superb with a pushing tide .
I was the last surfer out as the mist settled on the sea and the sun went down.

As the mist lifts 
Just perfection
Simon Oreilly- the evening session
A sleeping reef as woke up 

November 2, 2015

Clean Swell arrives in Lahinch

After a week of  Atlantic storm surf on the west coast and the half term tourists and crowds have left , a new clean west swell arrived on the Lahinch reefs.

October 25, 2015

October 16, 2015

Robin Island - Inis Oir

Everywhere you wander on the isle of Inisheer you will encounter the Robin.
Perched on walls singing, chasing other birds , every paddock seems to be a territory.
Even at the pub they will perch on your bag

Birdwatching on Inisheer ,a small guide

Birdwatching on Inisheer.
My reason for going to Inisheer was to search in hope for some migratory birds on an island where there isnt much, if any information on birdswatching at all
Inishmore the more western of the three Aran Islands over the past years has been quite remarkable for migrants, so why not Inisheer, after all it is an island in the atlantic that has a lighthouse,a lough and a pub on it
All week a steady easterly weather flow has bought small passerine birds west.
Today a SE breeze,dry with high cloud cover , we caught the Doolin -Aran ferry at 10;00 with arrival on the island at 10:40
A short 30 minute walk brings you to the north end of the lough.
2 Mute Swans, 12 Wigeon,1 Moorhen we on the water ,a Jack Snipe was flushed.Song Thrush ,Blackbirds, Mipits and small finch flocks feed on wildflower seeds in the surounding paddocks

The Lough looking south

A the south end of the Lough a Willow gorge runs along a small valley that links the lighthouse all the way to the lough offering some if not the only cover on the island (apart from walls).
A Rabbit Warren starts the opening to the Gorge,Brambles run down into the gorge joined with Willows and dead wildflower patches, the walls of the gorge offer a thick ivy cover, the Willows thicken then blend into a reed bed on the lough shore
We made our way along the ridge looking down.
We were delighted to find 2 Yellow browed Warblers ,2 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap along with Blackbirds ,Wrens,Dunnock ,Stonechats and Robins.
The Willow Gorge looking north

At the lighthouse (an hours walk from harbour) a Wheatear showed , a few Gulls and a Turnstone flock and a few Cormorant and Curlew were on the reef, small flocks of Starlings were swirling around, a Kestrel was in the area, otherwise it was quiet
We were thinking maybe that this area with a westerly air flow may suit American migrants better

October 14, 2015

Kestrel flybye

Every time I visited Lough Donnel over the past few weeks Ive been buzzed by raptors close up, today was the Kestrels turn

October 9, 2015

Chilling at the Cascades

An evening chilling at the Ennistymon Cascades, 
Spending time getting creative with the camera.