Tuesday, 8 November 2016

A Gale Doth Blow!

Tuesday 8th November Very strong SE-E Sunny intervals and showers, cold 5C (wind chill makes it feel 1C)

The wind is back in a vengeance and from a different direction as of late, south-easterly. Samuel Perfect and I make our way to the north-west end of North Ronaldsay yet again for a morning's seawatching. A face-stinging rain shower has both of us sheltering against a dry stone wall but it soon passes in the gale.


Most passing birds are hurtling past but a long way out. Immediately apparent is the number of auks; hundreds of them, guillemots and razorbills, maybe puffins but too far out to discern species. We take turns in counting them for half an hour each. The one hour count is 1411!
Otherwise, bird-wise there are just a few sooty shearwaters and red-throated divers, three of each, two great northern divers and fair numbers of gannets and fulmars zooming past in fewer numbers than of late.
Leaving the shelter of the trembling bird hide, Samuel and I go to look out over The Skerries to search through the gulls hunkering down on the rocks. Great black backed and herring gulls only, we turn our faces back into the wind.

Two whooper swans have recently arrived and move from a small pool to the larger Bewan Loch.
Remembrance Poppies are available at the airport waiting room. I feel better to have one for Friday.

Now, after a laundry afternoon, it is time to watch the news as the US Presidency is decided.



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