November had a very similar rainfall to October and the mean temperature was two degrees cooler. In comparison to last November, it was wetter and little milder. There was fifty percent more rain and the mean temperature was one degree higher.
Not surprisingly in November, winter visitors were to the fore. These included three Yellowhammer in Sliddery on 3rd, three Snow Bunting in Glenree on 7th, nine Twite at Drumadoon on 18th and a Brambling in Pirnmill on 20th. The large flocks of Redwing and Fieldfare reported in October seemed to have moved on. In November, the largest group of Redwing was twenty-five in Margnaheglish on 8th and the largest group of Fieldfare was sixty in Glen Sannox on 15th.
Other records of wintering birds included: a juvenile Merlin at Drumadoon Point on 4th , eight Lapwing in Feorline on 11th, thirty Turnstone in Whiting Bay on 16th, one hundred and eighty-nine Golden Plover at Machriewaterfoot on 19th, a Snipe at Cordon on 23rd, three Purple Sandpiper at Kildonan on 28th and five Woodcock in Lamlash on 30th.
Reports of wintering wildfowl included: a flock of fifty Pink-footed Geese, thirty-five Greylag Geese and a Barnacle Goose in the Shiskine Valley on 3rd, forty-five Teal in Carlo on 11th, five Wigeon at Silver Sands on 30th and the largest group of Whooper Swan was twenty-nine over Shannochie on 29th. Two juvenile Whooper Swan on their own were reported in the Shiskine Valley between and 10th and 20th. Perhaps they had got detached from their family group while on migration from Iceland. Later in the month, adult Whooper Swans with two juveniles were reported in the area.
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: five Siskin in Pirnmill on 2nd, a Treecreeper in Cordon on 3rd, eight Long-tailed Tit also in Cordon on 9th, a male Blackcap in Whiting Bay on 10th, nine Blackbird in Pirnmill on 15th, two Goldcrest in Brodick on 29th, fifty Chaffinch in Pirnmill on 30th and eleven Robin in Lochranza also on 30th.
There were some November records of birds usually associated with warmer months of the year. The last Gannet record was two in Lamlash Bay on 11th. In addition, there were two sightings of Osprey, one at the top of the String on 3rd and one at Whitefarland on 20th.
Finally, here is a further selection of highlights from what has been another exceptional month for bird-watching on Arran: three Moorhen on Mossend Pond on 5th, two Dipper at Machriewaterfoot on 9th, a White-tailed Eagle over Machrie Moor on 11th, five hundred Woodpigeon in Pirnmill on 13th, a Kingfisher in Sannox on 15th, seven Great Northern Diver in Machrie Bay on 19th, one Common Crossbill at Cnoc na Dail on 21st, three Goosander at Cordon on 22nd, two Shelduck returning to Auchenhew Bay on 28th after their autumn moult, two Golden Eagle over the summit of the String on 30th, four Little Grebe in Lochranza also on 30th and widespread reports of a single Little Egret from Lochranza to Kildonan but mainly from around Lamlash Bay from 18th to 30th.
This winter look out for Waxwings.