Scotland Trip – Day 1 – 16/xii/13

A short trip to visit family in Edinburgh meant that I had the opportunity to spend the day birding the stretch of coastline between Yellowcraigs nature reserve and Aberlady Bay. I began by searching the stretch of coastline between the islands of Fidra and Eyebroughy. Good numbers of Eider and Common Scoter were present, and amongst them were 5 Red-Breasted Merganser, 3 Guillemot and 4 Red-Throated Diver. Along the shoreline were decent numbers of waders including 4 Grey Plover and 6 Purple Sandpipers amongst the flock of Turnstones. However, after 3 hours of thorough searching, there was no sign of either of the female KING EIDER that had been present the day before. However, at Eyebroughy, one of them was finally located (another British tick for me) and watched for a good while with a small flock of the commoner Eider species.

Eider - Eyebroughy, Lothian

Eider – Eyebroughy, Lothian

Purple Sandpiper - Eyebroughy, Lothian

Purple Sandpiper – Eyebroughy, Lothian

After a quick and fruitless investigation of the next few kilometres of coastline, I reached Gullane Bay, where I picked up another group of 15 Common Scoter, and 2 cracking winter plumage drake Long-Tailed Duck. Also, more Purple Sandpipers were picked up amongst another flock of Turnstones.

At Aberlady Bay at dusk, good numbers of Wigeon and Teal were roosting, and approximately 300 Pink-Footed Geese flew in to join them and finish of a very satisfying days birding.

Aberlady Bay, Lothian

Aberlady Bay, Lothian

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