The first Swallow of Spring


As it happened, I didn't get a lot of birding done in Girvan but on the way back today, I stopped off at a couple of places to take in the local avifauna. First stop was Lendal foot where the usual throng of Herring Gulls was present with a few Greater black-backs and one or two Lessers. A couple of Black-throated Divers fished their way north as Gannets plunged into the sea nearby.

On the way into Ballantrae, I passed a Swallow heading north - my earliest ever I reckon. I don't hold out much hope for its chances but you never know. Loch Ryan was quite choppy - the regular Greater Scaup flock was assembled around the Bishop Burn outflow but scanning the loch surface was difficult so I decided to look at the flood at Kildrochat. A large flock of Pink-footed Geese were in the fields behind the houses and several duck were on the flash. I was looking into the sun so I made my way around to a what could have been the best viewing point possible and immediately picked up the drake Green-winged Teal hauled out with a couple of Common Teal. Wigeoen and Gadwall were also present.

From there I decided to call in to Wigtown and the marshes there to eat my lunch before driving back home. More Pink-footed Geese were on the marshes along with a few hundred Barnacle Geese. Teal, Wigeon, Pintail and Shoveler were on the pool alongside Redshank and Dunlin as I enjoyed the sunshine. That set me up for the three and a bit drive home.

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