Go to content

November 2021

Bird Sightings
In comparison to October, November had less than half the rainfall of October. Both months were mild, but November had the first named storm of the winter. In comparison to last November while temperatures were similar, this November had almost half the amount of rain as last November.

The November highlight was the first confirmed record of Siberian Chiffchaff on Arran. This bird was trapped, ringed, photographed, identified, and released by licensed bird ringers on Saturday 13 November in a garden in Sliddery. This featured in a recent “Banner Bird Note”.

Not surprisingly in November, winter visitors were to the fore. These included two Brambling in Sliddery on 1st, twenty-two Twite at Machriewaterfoot on 4th, a Snow Bunting on Beinn a’ Chliabhain on 7th, five Yellowhammer in Sliddery on 13th, a number of flocks of Redwing including sixty in Shannochie on 15th  and after a dearth of Fieldfare records in October a number of flocks including three hundred in Lochranza on 21st.

Other records of wintering birds included: a juvenile Merlin at Drumadoon Point on 2nd, one hundred and twenty Golden Plover at Machriewaterfoot on 4th, five Rook in Auchenhew also on 4th, twelve Turnstone at Sandbraes on 7th, twenty-one Snipe and nine Woodcock in Sliddery on 10th, one hundred and five Curlew on Corriecravie shore on 20th, twelve Lapwing at Port na Feannaiche on 28th and one Jack Snipe in Sliddery also on 28th.

Reports of wintering wildfowl included: two Wigeon at Clauchlands on 9th, two Goldeneye at Kingscross Point also on 9th, seventy Pink-footed Geese flying over Sliddery on 13th, one Whooper Swan on Mossend Pond on 14th, two hundred and twenty Greylag Geese in the Shiskine Valley on 15th, thirty-five Teal on Corriecravie shore on 20th and one Brent Goose on Silver Sands on 21st.

Gardens are safe refuges during the winter months with many people providing regular food and water for their feathered friends. These are a small selection from the many reports from gardens round the island in November: a male Blackcap in Whiting Bay on 8th, four Long-tailed Tit in Lamlash on 17th, a Goldcrest in Pirnmill on 20th, four Great Tit in Shannochie on 21st, a Treecreeper in Whiting Bay also on 21st, eight Coal Tit in Margnaheglish on 29th and eight Coal Tit and two Great Spotted Woodpecker in Lagg also on 29th.

There were two November records of birds usually associated with warmer months of the year, a Wheatear at Drumadoon Point on 2nd and a Swallow at Sliddery on 5th.

Finally, here is a further selection of highlights from what has been another exceptional month for bird-watching on Arran; a Little Egret by Fisherman’s Walk on 3rd, twelve Black-headed Gull at Sandbraes also on 3rd, a White-tailed Eagle over the entrance to Glen Catacol on 7th, three Bullfinch in Corriecravie quarry on 15th, a Kingfisher flying under the footbridge by the museum on 19th, three Golden Eagle including one sub-adult over the distillery in Lochranza also on 19th, five Great Northern Diver off Drumadoon Point on 21st, around two hundred Jackdaw coming in to roost in trees in Machrie on 22nd, five returning Shelduck in Pirnmill also on 22nd and four calling Water Rail in Corriecravie on 23rd.

Last but by no means least was the appearance of three Red Kite flying west from the “Heights” between Lamlash and Whiting Bay. The previous month there had been a report of six Red Kite together in the Shiskine Valley. Both are remarkable records. Red Kite records on Arran are usually of single birds.
Back to content