|Semipalmated Sandpiper, Doonbeg, Clare August 2011|
That's it for another year. I couldn't really title this posting 'Bridges of Ross 2011' because, well, I lost the faith and was only there a couple of days. Like last year - when I headed off early to explore other bits of Ireland - this year was a real letdown at the mighty Bridges. There just were not the birds around. Perhaps the lack of southwesterlies hadn't brought the birds far enough north in the Atlantic to be then brought down by the northwesterlies? Perhaps it's unseasonably cool? However, on Saturday there were some decent northwesterlies and what went past? Nada. The near Manx line was non-existent and those Grey Phals, Leach's and Sabine's of years gone by just didn't materialise. Some of the Irish lads went to Slyne Head this weekend and had 8,000 Sooties (plus a couple of Long-tailed Skuas and a Great Shear), so despite what I've just written, there are birds around. But Sooties were only in low double figures past the Bridges...
|juvenile Kittiwake Bridges of Ross, Clare|
So it was waders that saved the day. Well, they more than did that and a cracking juvenile Semipalmated Sandpiper found by Clewesy was top notch looking nice and fresh on the beach at Doughmore, Doonbeg, Clare on Friday. The next day, I managed to scoop an Irish wader tick with a nice adult Sharp-tailed Sandpiper reappearing on the incoming tide at Shannon Airport. And that was that for Clare.
|Ring-billed Gull Black Rock Strand, Kerry|
|juvenile Sanderling (with adult in the background)|
|Osprey over Blennerville, Kerry|
|The Skelligs - viewed from St. Finian's Bay, Kerry|