Friday, 19 April 2013

The ones that got away (again)

Dropped into Cullaloe this morning on a beautiful sunny day - not the best for vismig, but maybe something "springy"? Finally got Bullfinch on the list, bringing the year total up to 64. If you had asked me when the best time to see Bullfinch was I would have said "April, eating emergent leaves" (actually willow catkins), so fair enough - still quite late, though.

As I was about to get into the car to make for Inverkeithing I scanned the horizon and to my surprise a flock of geese was making its way north along the ridge on the east side of the reserve. I had my camera in my hand, but blocked by obstacles I only managed one shot. Naturally, today had to be the day of sunshine, and they had to be between me and the sun! I quickly (ok, desparately) tried to get my scope from the boot, and managed just as it became academic - scope and full sun behind your subject don't mix well. I was pretty sure that they weren't Greylags on structure (head and neck in particular), and as they passed they sounded to me like Beans, although at that point they were behind the ridge. I'll have a look at the photo to see if it reveals anything, although I'm not hopeful.

OK - so in close up you could possibly just about say that the head is more Taiga Bean than Pink-footed, but it would be pushing it to say anything conclusive - gutted. That would have met my target of adding one new species to Cullaloe for the year, as well as being a pretty decent record :(

At Inverkeithing there wasn't much to write home about, although there was another pair of Bullfinch.Also a Turnstone had dropped in, one RB Merganser remained hanging about, and a Swallow briefly quartered the quarry rim, baffling my camera's autofocus for a while, before moving on.

So Cullaloe goes to 64, only one species behind HOB, and has finally picked up Heron and Bullfinch, the most obvious omissions from the year list.

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