Wednesday, 13 January 2021

Surveying around Glasgow

Photo: Barr Loch, Lochwinnoch RSPB

Today I was surveying in the Glasgow area, including Barr Loch at Lochwinnich RSPB. I've been here before, about four years ago there was a spectacular drake hooded merganser. It was another species of merganser which stole the show today in the shape of two drake smews. Unfortunately they were around a kilometer distant so not great views, but still, I don't see very many drakes so I was delighted to catch up with them. 
 

Unfortunately I couldn't get any closer to these  beauties, and this photo was taken on my phone and through the telescope, with 60x magnification on the scope and another 5x on the phone camera! Then I cropped it! So by my reckoning that's about 60x5x2 = 600x magnification! It was a pretty dull day as well, heavy rain for much of it, so once again I'm pleased with the results!

Ring-billed gull at Strathclyde Loch,
but not from today!

On my way north I called in at Strathclyde Loch, which is so close to the motorway as to be almost as good as a service station stop. On the day I saw the hooded merganser in 2017, we also stopped off here and saw a ring-billed gull. The same bird turned up again about a week ago and I managed to see it today, but it was very brief and quite distant so for now I'll have to make do with this photo from 2017. There's always tomorrow though.

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