Sunday, 15 August 2010

Nothing to see here?

It always feels a little odd come the beginning of August when all the seabirds have left the cliffs and headed back out to sea where they spend most of the year. And you could be forgiven for thinking that without the clamour of the seabirds, that St Abb's Head is not worth visiting because there's nothing to see. But that's just so not the case, even if to take the spectacular scenery out of the equation, the property has something to offer whatever the time of year and whatever the weather.

Take yesterday for example. Definitely an autumnal feel in the air, and a strong breeze troubling the steely grey sea. Not a day for birdwatching you might think, but actually one of the regular local birdwatchers had a very fruitful seawatching session yesterday recording sooty and Manx shearwaters (the latter pictured above); great,arctic and pomarine skuas; a red throated diver and a little gull to name but a few.

And, I was leaning on the gate by the office texting earlier (we get very little reception actually in the office!) and a stoat virtually ran over my foot - I'm not sure who was the most surprised! And then when I was doing the rounds this afternoon, the sea had calmed down and it was a perfect day for spotting cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises). So I was keeping my eyes on the sea, looking out for any congregations of feeding birds, or disturbances on the surface and I was lucky enough to spot at least 3 harbour porpoise quite a way out to the NW of the Head feeding in amongst a group of diving gannets. Fabulous!

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