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Natural Connections

Modern life in Scotland is increasingly busy. The connections our ancestors had with nature and the land are being lost. As leisure time shrinks, or is filled with hi-tech experiences, opportunities to experience nature become fewer. And yet it is possible to connect with nature on a day to day basis. All around us, the great web of life continues to hold its shape, and nature continues its eternal cycles. Keep looking, listening, smelling, touching - and keep experiencing natural connections.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

A walk along the river this morning produced what I regard as an excellent total of 41 species for this largely urban area in SW Glasgow. The full list was: Mallard; Goosander; Cormorant; Grey Heron; Little Grebe; Buzzard; Moorhen; Black-headed Gull; Herring Gull; Feral Pigeon; Stock Dove; Woodpigeon; Collared Dove; Kingfisher; Magpie; Jay; Jackdaw; Carrion Crow; Raven; Goldcrest; Blue Tit; Great Tit; Coal Tit; Long-tailed Tit; Nuthatch; Treecreeper; Wren; Starling; Blackbird; Fieldfare; Song Thrush; Redwing; Robin; Dunnock; House Sparrow; Grey Wagtail; Pied Wagtail; Meadow Pipit; Chaffinch; Bullfinch and Goldfinch.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Woke up to a substantial fall of snow. Had some business over in Hamilton and managed a quick walk round the loch in the heritage park. Best birds were a Snipe in the "nature reserve" and 15 Lapwings standing out on the ice.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

A busy spell leading up to and through Christmas has meant no natural connections to speak of (although some light snow arrived late on Christmas day).

Saturday, December 16, 2017

A very strange-looking duck was on the river behind the house today. First impressions suggested an eclipse drake Tufted Duck but a number of features weren't right (white ring around upper breast and white patch far back on the wings - nearly at the sides of the tail - being the most obvious). The head colour looked dark brown (in the very poor light). Final identity probably female Goldeneye.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The cold snap continues with the thermometer showing -6.5°C again first thing. A glorious sunrise in Greenock. Braw!

Monday, December 11, 2017

A lunchtime walk around the Murdieston dams found large areas of water ice bound. Plenty of gulls were on the ice but all the water birds were concentrated in the unfrozen areas including a Little Grebe, two Moorhens and a female-type Goldeneye.

Sunday, December 08, 2017

A wintery walk along the river this lunchtime produced a number of good sightings including a Red Fox and a Buzzard, both with attendant Magpies, four Roe Deer at Bonnyholme playpark and at least 12 Stock Doves in Rosshall Park.

Saturday, December 09, 2017

A walk down the hill from Balgray Reservoir to Darnley produced plenty of feeding winter thrushes plus a nice pair of Redwing on Ryatt Linn Reservoir and four Whooper Swans on Waulkmill Glen Reservoir.

Friday, December 06, 2017

A Raven was being mobbed by ten Magpies and a Carrion Crow on the dome of the JNI this lunchtime.

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Monday, December 04, 2017

A Raven was on the dome of the JNI in Paisley first thing. Later, two flew west over Castlehead HS.

Sunday, December 03, 2017

A trip down the Ayrshire coast produced 15 Common Scoter offshore between Stevenston and Saltcoats, three Scaup on Auchenharvie Loch but no Purple Sandpipers at Saltcoats Harbour.

Saturday, December 02, 2017

Spent most of the day looking around sites in the Falkirk area including the Slammanan area, Grangemouth and Linlithgow. Details to follow.

Friday, December 01, 2017

A lunchtime walk around central Paisley produced two Treecreepers feeding with a tit flock and two Grey Wagtails on the river. Round at Forbes Place, one of the drake Mallards has learned to plunge-dive and had a Black-headed Gull waiting to steal any morsels every time it surfaced.