I headed out at around 1035 but there were few birds to be seen except a few Herring Gulls. I did eventually add a few more from the bus stop - Goldfinch, Blue Tit, Woodpigeon and Feral Pigeon. A Starling was seen from the bus out towards the park. The path to the rail underpass added Blackbird and Dunnock as well as 2 Chiffchaffs calling and showing relatively well. A Carrion Crow flew over. In the park things also seemed rather quieter than expected. A few small Rabbits were seen on the path but retreated back into the bushes when they saw me.
Chaffinches and Yellowhammer were seen before I was distracted by a Peacock butterfly in flight. I spotted a distant Buzzard circling up on a thermal off to the west before I found the second butterfly of the day - a Small Tortoiseshell this time, just beyond the car park. Jackdaws flew over while at the Lochan a few sleeping Mallards and a pair of Moorhens were the only birds around. I headed for the hide to check the tide state. A singing Willow Warbler proved elusive but a second bird in the trees by the hide showed relatively well, giving me a nice, slightly overdue year-tick.
There was little variety in the bay with only Redshanks and Teal to be seen and the tide still had a bit to go. I scanned through the Redshanks but found no sign of the Spotted Redshank. A couple of Lesser Black Backed Gulls flew past. I continued round towards the hill to kill time to let the tide come in a bit further in the hope that there were unseen waders around. I added distant Cormorants on the rock off Kingoodie and a male Linnet in a tree. There were plenty of Skylarks around, some of which showed well close to the path. A Pied Wagtail flew over before I headed back for a rather fruitless visit to the hide again.
A pair of Magpies were finally added in the area to the north of the composting toilet. A Kestrel hovered over the airport and was seen again from the car park much closer a few minutes later. A Blackcap was heard in the trees there but I failed to see it though a pair of Great Tits were watched as they investigated a nest box. A Robin was noted before I headed off to catch the bus for home. A House Sparrow was seen from the bus stop but was my final addition for the day.
Not the most productive visit to the park with only 29 species of bird seen in total - with 1 year-tick (in bold) among them, but it did get me out into the fresh air for a few hours even if I didn't really feel any better when I got home. On the plus side all the dog walkers were obeying the signs and keeping to the paths and keeping their dogs on leads in the area covered by the signs - though I did see a Skylark on the ground at the other end of the park. I suspect that at weekends when the park is busier the percentage obeying the signs will drop significantly, if previous years are any guide.
|Redshank & Teal|
Species seen - Blackbird, Blue Tit, Buzzard, Carrion Crow, Chaffinch, Chiffchaff, Cormorant, Dunnock, Goldfinch, Great Tit, Herring Gull, House Sparrow, Jackdaw, Kestrel, Lesser Black Backed Gull, Linnet, Magpie, Mallard, Moorhen, Pied Wagtail, Redshank, Robin, Feral Pigeon, Skylark, Starling, Teal, Willow Warbler, Woodpigeon, Yellowhammer.
Butterflies seen - Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell.
Mammals seen - Rabbit.