Trip reports

Field Trip - Easter Ross

Tree sparrow on twig
RSPB Image

Thursday, 10 October 2019

A small group of members gathered in Dingwall for the first autumn field trip. We drove along the north side of Cromarty Firth and parked at Kiltearn Church. A few redwings were feeding in the elderberry trees along with song thrushes and a mistle thrush. We walked along the shore to the bridge at the mouth of the River Sgitheach where four dippers were seen, all in the water diving from the surface looking for food. Tree sparrows and yellowhammers were around the churchyard. Pink-footed and grey-lag geese were flying over to nearby fields.

As the tide was high we drove to Balintore where groups of cormorants, shags, oystercatchers and turnstones were on the harbour wall. Nearby rocks had redshanks, ringed plovers and a late common tern amongst the black-headed, common and great black-backed gulls. One red-throated diver, several common guillemots and razorbills were found on the sea.

On the way to Nigg we saw skylarks in the fields and a magpie on a wire by Chapelhill. The tide was receding fast as we had lunch in the hide at Nigg watching the wader flocks flying around disturbed by a sparrowhawk. Knot, golden plover, bar-tailed godwits, curlew, lapwing, redshank and oystercatchers were seen. A large flock of wigeon, teal, mallard, shelduck and two brent geese were quite distant on the sea.

Our final stop was at Dalmore where we walked to the pier. A few Canada geese were with the greylags and linnets and reed buntings on the marsh. The light was poor and rain on its way so we decided to finish here. 63 species were recorded,