New Years day in Girvan

A fine and calm morning meant that it was a good time to finish off my Atlas survey for Girvan so Bernie and I headed out around town at not an unreasonable time. The streets were very quiet and so bird calls were easy to discern and we quickly picked up birds around the houses. There were loads of Chaffinches around ans House Sparrows abd Stalings don't seem to be affected by declines elsewhere in the country. It was nice to find a Dipper virtually in the town centre as well as lots more commoner garden birds that have not been apparent on previous visits. Finishing off in Glendoune, we came accross a large flock of Linnets and Goldfinches as well as more Chaffinches with a few Bramblings mixed in. Plenty of winter thrushes were feeding in the leaf litter and Goldcrests sang from the tree tops.

Having done that, I headed out to the harbour where a Water Pipit had been reported the day before. It was high tide so there wasn't much exposed seaweed. I made my way carefully up to a point overlooking the harbour edge and was surprised that the Redshanks and Turnstones didn't take flight. Neither did the Rock Pipit that was busy searching for food until another bird came in a chased it away - the Water Pipit. I got some rather good views of this bird and will go back tomorrow to try and get some images.

Next it was off to maidens to try and find that Redstart again. This time I was in luck. the wrack was still teeming with birds. Lots of waders plus Song Thrush, Dunnock, Robin, Stonechat, Grey Wagtail and the Black Redstart. I spent quite a time reviewing the Rock Pipits as they were very variable, some olive-brown as you'd expect, others much greyer with more than a hint of a supercillium. I thin I'll need to put in some more time here.

A post-lunch walk down to Girvan Harbour was rewarded with a Golden Plover flying around the harbour but, as some of our local friends have commented, Sammy the (Grey) Seal hasn't been seen for some time. I'll dip down the coast tomorrow for some divers I think.

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