Thursday, 14 May 2015


 Last weekend I spent a fantastic two days with Jake Gearty, Danni Gilroy, Jonathan Scragg and Aidan Branch. We started in Aberdeen looking for the Harlequin, but sadly he wasn't seen at all on the Saturday and has since been seen up and down the river, which is frustrating! We then moved onto the Ythan Estuary and had superb views of the drake King Eider who was displaying like a hero. Next we moved onto the sublime village of Portsoy in beautiful sun and had excellent scope views of a full summer plumage White-billed Diver.
We ended the day in the Cairngorms with 2 Ptarmigan being the obvious highlight as they were just so fantastically tame and so beautiful! Some of the last birds of the day were 2 stunning Black-throated Divers, a stunning Slavonian Grebe and 3 displaying Ospreys, with the latter over the restaurant we ate at! We camped in a tent near the forest and enjoyed brief views of a male Capercaillie before bed...what a nice nightcap!
Sunday wasn't quite so brilliant as the weather was a little woeful to say the least. Crested Tit was about the only bird we added to the trip list, but that's rarely a bad thing! I had hoped to give the Crossbills a go, but sadly we only had a single flyover bird that was almost certainly a Common Crossbill. A great trip with some great people!

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