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Birdie Group Dec 2015

by Trevor Kay - 12:13 on 20 December 2015

Birdie Walk on Wednesday 16th December.

Otherwise known as “Mad ducks and U3A go out in the b ****y rain!!”

The day started off reasonably well weather wise with only light rain and we managed to see several species at St Mary’s loch, (loch of Ayre). Due to the many days of rain we have had recently, the route we had planned was changed to avoid a rather narrow and slippery cliff top walk. Instead we took a path along the back of Holm village and made our way cross country towards Graemshall loch.

We had a first for the birdie group when several of the participants decided to stop off at Celina Rupp’s jewellery workshop for a pre Christmas bout of shopping. It was unclear whether anyone bought anything as nobody owned up to making a purchase.

As we approached Graemshall the rain, which had been getting progressively more persistent, increased in volume and very few people could be bothered to take out their binoculars to see what was sitting on the loch!

A rather quick walk back to St. Mary’s loch followed and a rather bedraggled group of people went back to Trevor and Fiona’s house for hot drinks and a mince pie.

Ray kindly provided us with a list of birds which had been seen. Amazingly, given the horrible weather, we managed to see 23 species and heard a single wren.

Birds which were seen were: Red-breasted merganser, Mallard, Tufted duck, Long-tailed duck, Teal, Goldeneye, Redshank, Curlew, Great black-backed gull, Herring gull, Starling, Hooded crow, House sparrow, Rook, Blackbird, Greylag goose, Lapwing, Mute swan, Whooper swan, Common gull, Shag, Eider and Meadow pipit.

Whoever came to the conclusion that wet weather was good weather for ducks was obviously not a bird person as they were rather thin on the ground or, should I say, loch?

Despite the foul weather, probably the worst we have had for a birdie walk this year, FIFTEEN members of the group took part in the walk which was possibly the highest turn out of the year. The walk ended with people amazingly still in good humour and ready for next year’s group activities.

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