Waxwings Galore

October 31, 2010 at 10:51 am


After the spectacle of the geese last week it is hard to imagine it getting much better on Islay but it did, with the arrival of my favourite bird the Waxwing. For three days we encountered up to four flocks a day with the largest being twenty five in Port Charlotte, which is where the photo above was taken. All our efforts were concentrated on checking berry laden trees and with in three days they had all moved on but what an unexpected bonus.

On another day we found a female Otter and two young, plus an adult Sea Eagle and a juvenile of the year. If that was not good enough we also saw three Swallows, a male Blackcap and a male Ring Ouzel. With a spectacular sunrise and sunset on the same day there can be nowhere in Europe that presents such diverse birding at this time of year but there is a price to be paid – seven days of wet and windy weather in between!

A trip to Jura produced more Waxwings an Otter and hundreds of Red Deer at the height of the rutting season. Many were by the roadside in the early morning and presented some good views of the stags.

We have not been to Islay and Jura for two years in Autumn and if you can endure the wild weather it certainly offers the greatest wildlife spectacle in Britain in Autumn.