June 2012

Harbour porpoises featured on 5 & 20/6 off Shapinsay & Hoxa Head respectively.

Interesting birds early in June included cuckoo (8/6) and siskins (10/6).  Perhaps the bird of the month, however, was a female surf scoter at Echnaloch, present from the 10/6 for a few days, in the company of some common scoters and a female long-tailed duck.

Mid-month interest was provided by a calling quail on 14/6; a turtle dove (14/6); and a great yellow bumblebee at Barth Head.  A visit to Eday on 15/6 enabled a count of the Calf cormorant colony at 300+birds.

August 2006

We took most of the month “off” to visit the British Birdwatching Fair (BBF) at Rutland, and to get some big outdoor jobs done on our new peedie barn self-catering, such as installing the solar panel and septic tank.

We are taking bookings shortly for April 2007 onwards.

It was great to meet so many people at the BBF, and for the many folk who participated in our Highland Park quiz, the correct answer to the question “How many species of seabirds breed in Orkney?” was 21 (source Seabird 2000 survey), as follows: fulmar; storm petrel; gannet; cormorant; shag; Arctic skua; bonxie; black-headed gull; common gull; LBB gull; herring gull; GBB gull; kittiwake; Sandwich tern; common tern; Arctic tern; little tern; guillemot; razorbill; tystie; and puffin.