Friday, December 19, 2014

Ring-necked Duck

I was working near Bellmullet in Mayo during the week and I visited Carrowmore Lake over two separate days 17th & 18th December.  Within a flock of 22 Tufted Ducks at the pump house end of the lake was this adult drake Ring-necked Duck.  Apologies for the bad images as the weather in Mayo was wet, dark and windy all week long with little or no brightness.  Also on the lake were 15 Whooper Swans, four Goldeneye, two Turnstones and a flock of 44 Tufted Ducks.
Drake Ring-necked Duck at Lough Carrowmore near Bangor Erris, John N Murphy

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Brown Pelicans

A trip to the US west coast and Pacific would not be complete without the inclusion of Brown Pelicans.  It is hard not to take photos of these monsters.  Here are some shots of birds around Monterey.
Brown Pelicans adult and juveniles John N Murphy

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Monterey Shearwaters

On the pelagic trip into Monterey Bay in November to see whales, we clocked up numerous seabirds.  Highlights were the Pink-footed Shearwaters, Black-vented Shearwaters, some Sooties, Pomarine Skua, Cassin's Auklets, Grey Phalaropes and Pacific Divers. 
Pink-footed Shearwater John N Murphy
Black-vented Shearwaters & (Cassin's Auklet) John N Murphy

 Sooty Shearwater John N Murphy

 Heerman's Gull John N Murphy
Pacific Diver John N Murphy 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


We visited sunny California from 7th to 21st November for our summer holidays.  Great location, fantastic state and lots of good birding. Arrived in San Francisco on the 8th November and drove directly to Monterey for the first stop on our trip.  We had excellent views of all the mammals and birds along the shore in Monterey and I was delighted to catch up with gulls and terns on the waterfront that I have not seen in some years. A boat trip out into the bay on the 9th was brilliant with magnificent and close views of 13 different Humpback Whales, Sea Lions and lots of great seabirds on the way in and out. Here are a few selected shots from the boat off Monterey.
Humpback Whales and Sea Lions in Monterey Bay John N Murphy

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Snipe in the garden

It is amazing with only a few nights of hard frost and already the Snipe have arrived in my front field and around the garden.  Just wondering is it a sign of bad weather to come.  Check back later in the week for photos and reports from my trip to California late in November.

Snipe foraging in frosty grass  John N Murphy