Thursday, 24 January 2013

Down by the harbour

A quick wander down to the harbour should prove worth the visit this weekend - weather permitting.  In fact, bird watching is often more fruitful in bad weather, if you can bare the cold.

I popped down yesterday and counted over 40 Bar Tailed Godwits on the east beach along with many Widgeon; unfortunately I was on the west side of the river and unable to get a decent photo, so I headed back along the harbour fully intent on heading out to the east side of the river hoping the birds would wait for me!

On my way I spotted a couple of visitors to the harbour - both of which I saw around this time last year: a male Red Breasted Merganser (that's him in the first photo) and a male Goldeneye.   Both photos taken at the mouth of the harbour yesterday.  They seem to visit the river around this time of year and hang around for a few weeks before planning the trip to their breeding grounds.

As you can see in the photos the light was fading and I was too late to head along the path to the east beach, but hopefully the godwits and widgeon will be back for another photo opportunity!

However, a couple of days ago a female Goldeneye (below) was feeding near the Merryton Bridge and gave me a great chance to photograph its reflection. Maybe these two are going to get together?




  1. Lots of interesting things at the harbour area, I must be unlucky I always seem to miss the unusual birds.
    Last week after watching winter watch my luck changed, they were talking about and showing eider sea ducks and long tailed sea ducks, I had a look through to Burghead Harbour and there they were,beautiful birds,I had never had the privilege of seeing before. I will look down to the harbour tomorrow now that my luck has changed.

  2. That's great news Zimmie. You can always get good close up views at Burghead - and aren't the colours spectacular!

    Hopefully your luck has changed and you can see the Red Breasted Merganser and the Goldeneye in Nairn now. The Tuftued Duck and Goosanders should also be around the river by the harbour. And don't forget to to look up in the trees for the Goldcrest flitting from branch to branch.

    Good luck!