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Recent Sightings

Bird Sightings

The aim of this page is to keep everyone, residents and visitors alike, up to date with what "unusual" birds are about. Observers are asked to contact me on info@arranbirding.co.uk. The intention is to keep the page up to date so that others can benefit from the sharing of observations. In the event of rarities being found, further details will be required from observers.

arranbirding.co.uk has complete discretion as to what information is added to these pages. In particular, any details which might reveal breeding sites of vulnerable species will be excluded. No information will be published which may in any way put birds at risk.

Species

  Image

Details

Swift
On Saturday 8 August there was a report of a Swift feeding with House Martin and Swallow over Clachaig. This is only the tenth Arran record this year of this regular summer visitor and passage migrant. The largest group this year has been twenty over Cleats Shore on 25 June. More info on Swift on Arran here.
Greenshank
On Saturday 25 July there was a report of a Greenshank on the shore at Port na Feannaiche. This is the first record of a "returning" Greenshank. Greenshank is an uncommon passage migrant and occasional winter visitor. It is only the second Arran record this year. The last record was on 24 January on the shore of Loch Ranza
Wood Sandpiper
On Friday 24 July in the afternon there was a report of a Wood Sandpiper calling and flying over Bennecarrigan and later around 17.30 flying over Sliddery. This is only the second ever record of this rare passage migrant on Arran. The last record was in May 2011 at Drumadoon Point.
Rose-coloured Starling
On Monday 20 July around lunchtime a Rose-coloured Starling appeared in a garden in Shiskine. It was attracted to the peanut feeder where it was photographed. This is the fourth summer in a row that this species has appeared on Arran. More information from 2017 here and 2018 here. In 2019 one was in Blackwaterfoot on 4 June.
Sandwich Tern
On Wednesday 15 July there was a report of a Sandwich Tern feeding off shore at Sandbraes, Whiting Bay. Although the Sandwich Tern does not breed on Arran it is a regular passage migrant as it heads north from West Africa in the spring making the return journey in the autumn. This may have been an early returning non-breeding bird.
Osprey
On Sunday 8 June there was a report of an Osprey in Lamlash Bay. It was around eight o'clock. As it flew south west across the bay, it was mobbed by gulls. This is the first report of this occasional passage migrant this year. Last year there were four reports including one from Lamlash Bay on 7-8 April.
Swift
On Saturday 30 May in the morning there was a report of two Swift flying over Sliddery. This is the first Arran report of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 10 May. There are no confirmed breeding records of Swift on Arran.
Pale-bellied Brent Goose
On Wednesday 27 May in the evening there was a report of a single Pale-bellied Brent Goose feeding on the shore at Silver Sands for about half hour. It then flew west high. The last report of this occasional winter visitor to Arran was a sungle bird in Whiting Bay on 23 October 2019.
Sanderling
On Tuesday 19 May in the evening there was a report of a group of ten Sanderling feeding on the shore by Drumadoon Point. This Arctic breeding species was in a range of plumages with some already in breeding plumage..
Arctic Tern
On Friday 15 May there was a report of a single Arctic Tern off the beach by the Kildonan Hotel. This is the first Arran report of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 14 May. This is one of the longest distance migrants wintering close to the Antarctic circle and breeding close to the Arctic circle.
Spotted Flycatcher
On Saturday 9 May in the afternoon there was a report of Spotted Flycatcher in High Kildonan.  It seems migrants hit the rain front this morning and dropped on the south end of Arran before moving on when the weather improved. This is the first Arran report of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 11 May.
Wood Warbler
On Saturday 9 May in the morning there was a report of Wood Warbler singing in High Kildonan.  It sang for a few hours. It seems migrants hit the rain front this morning and dropped on the south end of Arran before moving on when the weather improved. This is the first Arran report of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 17 May.
Garganey
On Sunday 3 May there was a report of a pair of Garganey with Teal on Sliddery shore. This is only the second ever Arran record of this summer visitor. The last record was also a pair on Torr Righ pond on 9 May 2012.
Magpie
On Saturday 2 May there was a report of a Magpie flying east along the cliffs at Dippin Head. The last Arran report of this vagrant species on Arran was a single bird at Silver Sands on 2 February.
Manx Shearwater
On Tuesday 28 April there was a report of twenty-five Manx Shearwaters off Imachar and on Wednesday 29 April there was one close in shore at Machriewaterfoot. These are the first Arran reports of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 15 April. For more information on Manx Shearwater click here.
Whitethroat
On Thursday 23 April there was a report of a Whitethroat singing from gorse at Machriewaterfoot. On the morning of Friday 24 April there were two further reports, one from Porta Buidhe and the other from Sliddery. These are the first Arran reports of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 20 April.
Bar-tailed Godwit
On Thursday 23 April there was a report of a Bar-tailed Godwit at Cosyden. This is the first Arran report this year of this long distance passage migrant. The last Arran record was on 1 September 2019 also at Cosyden.
Whinchat
On Wednesday 22 April there was a report of two male Whinchat in Glen Rosa. One of the birds was photographed. This is the first Arran report of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 18 April.
Tree Pipit
On Sunday 19 April there was a report of a Tree Pipit singing from a woodland edge by Lamlash Golf Course.. This is the first Arran report of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 20 April. For more info on our three common pipits click here.
Grasshopper Warbler
On Sunday 19 April a Grasshopper Warbler was seen, heard and recorded on the Community Field above Whiting Bay. This is the first Arran report of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was also on 19 April. For more info on Grasshopper Warbler click here.
Sedge Warbler
On Thursday 16 April there was a report of a Sedge Warbler singing at Porta Buidhe, Kildonan. This is the first Arran report of this summer visitor received this year. The first report last year was on 20 April.
Garden Warbler
On Wednesday 15 April there was a report of a Garden Warbler on the north end of Holy Isle in the early eveningn. This is the first Arran report received this year. There were few records in 2019 of this summer visitor. The first report last year was on 24 May.
Whimbrel
On Wednesday 15 April there was a report of a Whimbrel on Sliddery Shore. Numbers of this regular passage migrant will build up over the following few weeks. To distinguish from the more common Curlew click here. Particularly look out for Whimbrel with coloured flags on their legs including A2 ( see photo). More info here.
Cuckoo
On Tuesday 14 April and Wednesday 15 April there were reports of Cuckoo calling in North Sannox. Also on 15 April there was a report a Cuckoo calling near the cemetery at the entrance to Glen Sannox. These are the first reports received this year. Last year the first report was on 19 April.
Scaup
On Monday 13 April there was a report of an adult male Scaup on Mossend Pond. The last Arran record of this occasional visitor was a female  on Sildery Shore on 20 September 2018.
Common Sandpiper
On Friday 10 April there was a report of a Common Sandpiper on Sliddery Shore. This is the first Arran report received this year. The first report last year was on 22 March.
Common Scoter
On Wednesday 8 April in the evening there was a report of thirty-eight Common Scoter off Cosyden. This is the largest report of this migratory sea duck off Arran in the last forty years. It is more than double the previous highest total. For more information on their migration click here
Hoopoe
On Wednesday 8 April a Hoopoe was reported in the morning in High Kildonan. This striking and distinctive summer visitor to Europe is more assocated with warmer areas of the continent and may have overshot in its journey north. It is only the fourh ever record for Arran. The last record was in July 2006.
House Martin
On Monday 6 April there was a report of two House Martin at Machriewaterfoot in the early eveningn. This is the first Arran report received this year. The first report last year was on 18 March.
Sandwich Tern
On Monday 6 April there was a report of three Sandwich Tern at Cosyden in the late afternoon. This is the first Arran report received this year. The first report last year was on 23 March.
Willow Warbler
On Sunday 5 April there was a report of a Willow Warbler singing in Clauchan Glen. This is the first Arran report received this year. The first report last year was on 14 March.
Swallow
On Sunday 5 April  two Swallow were reported in the early evening in Lamlash close to the Drift Inn. This is the first Arran report received this year. The first report last year was on 18 March.
Sand Martin
On Sunday 5 April there was a report of Sand Martin in the glen at Monyquil. This is the first Arran report received this year. The first report last year was on 31 March.
Blackcap
On Saturday 4 April there was a report of a Blackcap singing in North Kiscadale. This is the first report of Blackcap singing this year. For more info on Blackcap on Arran click here.
White Wagtail
On Monday 30 March there was a report of a male White Wagtail on the shore at Kilpatrick Point. This is the first Arran record this year of this regular passage migrant. The first report last year was on 4 April.
Wheatear
On Monday 23 March there was a report of three Wheatear, a male and two female, on the shore at Porta Buidhe , Kildonan. This is the first Arran report received this year. The first report last year was on 18 March
Chiffchaff
On Sunday 22 March there was a report of a Chiffchaff singing in the trees behind Whiting Bay Hall. This is the first Arran report received this year. The first report last year was on 14 March.
Grey Geese
On Tuesday 17 March with the three hundred Greylag Geese in the Shiskine Valley there were five White-fronted Geese and two Pink-footed Geese.
Glaucous Gull
On Saturday 29 February  a first winter Glaucous Gull was also photographed (bird in foreground) on the shore at Thunderguy among other resting gulls. This is the second record this year of this species. Also present was a first winter Iceland Gull ( see below).
Iceland Gull
On Saturday 29 February  a first winter Iceland Gull was photographed (middle bird) on the shore at Thunderguy among other resting gulls. This is the second record this year of this species. Also present was a first winter Glaucous Gull ( see above).
Snow Bunting
On Thursday 27 February there was a report of three Snow Bunting on the flat rocks at the north end of Sannox Bay. This is the fourth record of Snow Bunnting on Arran this year. All other records were of a single bird.
Waxwing
On Monday 24 February in the morning a single Waxwing was photographed in a garden in McKelvie Road, Lamlash, before it flew off to trees in the adjacent school. This is the second record of Waxwing on Arran this year. The first was also of a single bird on  Friday 3 January  in a garden in Shiskine.  
Gannet
On Tuesday 11 February in the afternoon there was a report of two adult Gannet heading south passed Pirnmill. This is the first Arran report this year of this species.
Glaucous Gull
On Tuesday 11 February in the morning there was a report of a first winter Glaucous Gull close in-shore off Pirnmill. The last Arran record of this Arctic breeding species was on 3 November 2018 and that was also off Pirnmill.
White-fronted Goose
On Monday 10 February there was a report of six White-fronted Geese in a field in the Shiskine Valley that also contaned more than two hundred Greylag Geese. This is the first Arran report this year. The last Arran report of this species was two in Sliddery on 24 March 2019.
White-tailed Eagle
On Friday 24 January there was a report of a sub adult White-tailed Eagle flying close to the shore and giving good views at Machrie. This is the first Arran report this year.
Greenshank
On Friday 24 January there was a report of a Greenshank on the shore of Lochranza by the river mouth. This is the first Arran report this year.
Snow Bunting
On Friday 17 January there was a report of a Snow Bunting in a coastal garden in Pirnmill. This is the first Arran record this year and continues a good run of Arran sightings of this species during November and December.
Waxwing
On Friday 3 January there was a report of a single Waxwing in a garden in Shiskine feeding on holly berries. This is the first Arran record of this irruptive winter species since 8 January 2017. More ino here
Iceland Gull
On Wednesday 1 January there was a report of a first winter Iceland Gull at Whitefarland. This may be the same gull that was reported at Catacol on 24 November. This Arctic breeding gull is an uncommon winter visitor. In 2018 there were twenty records from fifteen location while in 2019 there was only one record.
Surf Scoter
On Saturday 21 December a female/immature Surf Scoter was again photographed in Catacol Bay. This is almost a month after  the first ever Arran record of this American species. For more info click here.
Snow Bunting
On Friday 13 December there was a further report of Snow Bunting on Cleats Shore. This species was also reported from this location in the middle of November. In addition there was a flock of twenty-seven Twite.
Pink-footed Geese
On Thursday 12 December there was a flock of sixty-nine Pink-footed Geese in the Shiskine Valley. The following day thirty-three were reported along with two flocks of Greylag Geese with a combined total of almost three hundred birds. It is a good time to be checking the wintering geese.
Chiffchaff
On Thursday 28 November a Chiffchaff was photographed at Oakbank, Clauchlands, Lamlash, showing the characteristics of the sub species "tristis", commonly called Siberian Chiffchaff. This sub-species breeds east of the Urals and normally winters in India but does turn up in the UK most autumns/winters. There has been no previous Arran record.
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