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Sunday, 24 November 2013

Purple Sheen

On Saturday 23rd November, a no show (for me during a 2 hour steak out for the Glaucous Gull) meant I didn't see much of avian interest in Hamilton Dock, however there was a Common Seal lying on the beach, it launched itself in the water and often arched its back in the water and sticking its head vertically upwards out of the water many times before it eventually hauled itself onto the beach. The dock worker mistakenly thought it was ill and the moment a ladder went onto the beach the seal looked around then frantically started to get itself into the water where it again swam off and eventually hauled itself onto the far beach. A look over at Ness Point saws very close feeding Purple Sandpiper feeding in good light on the rocks just a few feet away from the compass circle. The excellent light revealed the magical purple sheen on its plumage, giving the birds it's name. A real treat to see this rarely seen feature. Nearby on the defence rocks by the ledge were a further 9 roosting Purple Sandpipers. These wonderful waders are always a delight to see.

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