Posts on this page are for scarce & rare sightings. Descriptions will be required for species listed by the Argyll, Scottish & British rare bird committees prior to their acceptance. Rare bird forms are available from Jim.
The Argyll Bird Club has a Facebook group if you wish to post your own sightings and photographs for all other reports. In addition, please submit any relevant records to BTO BirdTrack or the Argyll bird recording system. Contact Malcolm Chattwood email:
SPRING MIGRANTS 2021
Please report sightings you have of spring migrant arrivals to Jim at the email above.
A table for the migrants reported so far (please click): ARGYLL SPRING MIGRANTS 12.06.2021
The 2020 Argyll Bird Report PDF (please click): ARGYLL BIRD REPORT 32 2020
Recent Reports of Scarce & Rare Sightings 2021
TIREE: A LEACH’S PETREL flew past Aird on a sea-watch this morning – also a Pomarine Skua (John Bowler).
MID-ARGYLL: A party of 5 PINTAILS arrived at Loch Gilp today – 4mm & a f/imm (John Halliday) – a good record for Argyll mainland.
ISLAY: The group of 5 LESSER SCAUP are still present at Loch Skerrols. Also the RED-BREASTED GOOSE was seen again from the road towards Ballygrant at Esknish.
KINTYRE: A TODD’S CANADA GOOSE was reported this afternoon between Machrihanish and Campbeltown at ‘The Laggan’ area (Tom Lowe).
TIREE: The KILLDEER was relocated this afternoon near Balevullin (John Bowler).
ISLAY: Now 5 LESSER SCAUP reported this morning (f +4 mm all 1cy’s) at Loch Skerrols today (Adam Wilson).
TIREE: A KILLDEER at Greenhill today (John Bowler). Bird was first found yesterday at Kilkenneth by crofter Ewan Malcolm. Fourth for Argyll if accepted.
ISLAY: A report of now 4 LESSER SCAUP (f +3mm all 1cy’s) at Loch Skerrols today (Adam Wilson).
KINTYRE: Three RED KITES today circling over Lephenstrath farm & then they cruised out to sea & across towards the headland (Mull of Kintyre) (Ann & Noel Hand).
MID-ARGYLL: A first-winter LITTLE GULL again at the head of Loch Gilp (Jim Dickson).
TIREE: YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER again in the garden at Balephuil today (John Bowler).
ISLAY: A report of 3 LESSER SCAUP at Loch Skerrols today (per BirdGuides).
TIREE: A YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER in the garden at Balephuil today (John Bowler).
ISLAY: RED-BREASTED GOOSE, CACKLING GOOSE, LESSER SCAUP and AMERICAN WIGEON all still present on the island today.
MULL: A LITTLE AUK showing well today off Croggan, Loch Spelve (Mike Murphy).
Update on some recent sightings: ISLAY – the RED-BREASTED GOOSE, AMERICAN WIGEON, LESSER SCAUP, CACKLING GOOSE and POCHARDS are still present on the island as well as a few Snow Buntings. MULL – the RED-BACKED SHRIKE not reported after 4th Nov, the odd report of Snow Buntings, Bramblings and Kingfisher. Fieldfares nos still small. COWAL – a single Great Crested Grebe back at Loch Long, also high numbers of Siskin reported. MID-ARGYLL – Redwings nos appear to have peaked as birds move through and Fieldfare nos starting to pick up with some flocks up to 200 birds. Goldeneye nos still very low however good nos of Wigeon.
MID-ARGYLL: A first-winter LITTLE GULL was just off the front green at Lochgilphead, Loch Gilp this afternoon (Jim Dickson).
ISLAY: A juvenile GLAUCOUS GULL was seen just north of Bruichladdich pier today (Dan Brown) – first report of the autumn/winter.
ISLAY: An adult ‘RUSSIAN’ WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE with Greenland birds – in fields to the east of Loch Gruinart. Also noted at Gruinart a very distant and therefore only ‘possible’ WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER with Dunlin and a dark & rufous juvenile harrier that showed good features for a Nearctic NORTHERN HARRIER – one to look out for tomorrow.. (Dan Brown).
MULL: The 1cy RED-BACKED SHRIKE is still present in the Salen area.
ISLAY: A Juv/first-winter male LESSER SCAUP was new in and a bit flighty today at Loch Skerrols (Dan Brown).
MULL: A RED KITE today high over Balmeanach (Jacqui and Mike Murphy).
GENERAL: Thrushes & finches – large flocks of finches, particularly SISKINS have been recorded across Argyll in the last week including 200+ in COWAL, 175 on JURA and more than usual on ISLAY. The largest numbers of BRAMBLING for many years are being reported now and today 70 were noted along the east side of JURA along with counts of 350 CHAFFINCH and 110 GOLDFINCH. An obvious influx of FIELDFARE arrived today and included hundreds on ISLAY, c 550 on JURA and c200 around the wider Moine Mhor area. Also many flocks of 100+ REDWINGS being noted and 1,000 on JURA
MULL: The 1cy RED-BACKED SHRIKE is still showing ar Aros, nr Tobermory today.
JURA: A ‘SIBERIAN’ CHIFFCHAFF was seen nr the school in Craighouse today (Dan Brown).
ISLAY: Birds of note across the island today included – 5 male COMMON POCHARD, 1 CACKLING GOOSE, 1 fem RING-NECKED DUCK, 2 LITTLE EGRETS, male AMERICAN WIGEON, RED-BREASTED GOOSE (un-ringed), 1 LITTLE AUK.
TIREE: An early sea-watch off Aird produced 3 POMARINE SKUAS and 4 LITTLE AUKS, also 3 late MANX SHEARWATERS. Also a LAPLAND BUNTING at the Reef (John Bowler).
ISLAY: A group of 5 drake COMMON POCHARD found on Loch Gorm today (highest number in Argyll for many years) – with an impressive count of 237 TUFTED DUCKS (Dan Brown).
MULL: A 1cy RED-BACKED SHRIKE was found today at Aros nr Tobermory (Dr Mark Williams).
GENERAL: Still good numbers (hundreds rather than thousands) of REDWINGS being reported however very few FIELDFARES this autumn (small counts only). More than average numbers of BRAMBLING being reported (double figures in some places) and in last week or so has seen widespread reports of RING OUZEL (mostly singles).
ISLAY: Another report of the RED-BREASTED GOOSE at Gruinart today, also the LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER was reported again from the RSPB Gruinart north hide and the drake AMERICAN WIGEON is still at Loch Skerrols.
TIREE: The two female RING -NECKED DUCKS at Loch a’ Phuill have remained there in recent days and therefore different from the two reported from Islay. A ‘SIBERIAN’ CHIFFCHAFF was at Balephuil on 26th Oct (John Bowler).
ISLAY: A LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER found at RSPB Gruinart reserve, north hide (James How). A RED-NECKED GREBE reported from Uiskentuie, Loch Indaal – seen close in early afternoon (Dave Nevitt). Also an AMERICAN WIGEON, two RING-NECKED DUCKS on Loch Skerrols (first found yesterday) & also a YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER at Gruinart on Wed 27th (details required from the finders please, thanks).
MULL: A SOOTY SHEARWATER was seen off north Mull from a whale watching boat (Joe Fryer – per Mullbirds website).
ISLAY: A juv/1cy YELLOW WAGTAIL was seen briefly nr the head of Loch Indaal today and perhaps showing features of the much rarer EASTERN YELLOW WAGTAIL (Ed Hutchings).
ISLAY: A CACKLING GOOSE was seen from the Port Askaig – Errobus road nr Skerrols today (Gary Turnbull). A dead LITTLE AUK was found at Claddach, nr Portnahaven (Mary Redman). A RING OUZEL was in a garden ar Bruichladdich, eating Cotoneaster berries (Peter Roberts).
ISLAY: A RING OUZEL was with Redwings in a Port Ellen garden today.
ISLAY: A CACKLING GOOSE photographed at RSPB Gruinart reserve today (James How) presumably the same bird reported there from the 12th Oct (John Overfield et al). As a BBRC assessed species, a reminder that any reports require a write up and photos to be formally submitted. Yesterday a LITTLE AUK was at Loch Indaal and a 1cy MEDITERRANEAN GULL was seen at Machir Bay (Lance Degnan). Ten BRAMBLING were counted along the Glen Road towards Port Charlotte (Dave & Sian Nevitt). A RING OUZEL was at Gatehouse, JURA today (Louise Muir).
COLL: A “Siberian” blythi type LESSER WHITETHROAT was on the island today (Greg Smith).
ISLAY: A RED KITE was reported from the Oa today (Lance Degnan).
TIREE/COLL: Three LESSER WHITETHROATS today including the long stayer “Siberian” blythi at Balephuil – joined by a much more sandy brown coloured bird showing features of “Central Asian” halimodendri LESSER WHITETHROAT at Croft, Balephuil and a new “Siberian” blythi type bird at The Glebe (Jim Dickson/Stuart Gibson). An immature RING OUZEL was new in at Heylipol then flew towards Loch a’ Phuil (John Bowler). Another RING OUZEL was reported on Coll (Greg Smith)
TIREE: A “Todd’s” CANADA GOOSE in with Barnacle Geese just north of Balephetrish Hill – presumably the returning bird from previous winters (John Bowler).
TIREE: A GREAT WHITE EGRET today at Loch a’ Phuill – feeding along the south shore. The juv DOTTEREL still present at Balevullin and the presumed “SIBERIAN” LESSER WHITETHROAT still at Balephuil (Jim Dickson/Stuart Gibson). YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER still at Balephuil (John Bowler).
TIREE: Two YELLOW-BROWED WARBLERS at Balephuil and “SIBERIAN” LESSER WHITETHROAT still present there (John Bowler).
MULL: A juvenile SABINE’S GULL was seen with Kittiwakes off the north end of Iona this morning (Andrew Russell). A RED KITE was seen at Kellan Wood, Loch na Keal (Pete Walkden).
COLL: A PIED FLYCATCHER reported on the island today (Greg Smith).
TIREE: A LESSER WHITETHROAT at Balephuil was showing characteristics of “Siberian” race blythi and a YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER still there (John Bowler). A nominate race LESSER WHITETHROAT was at Heylipol, fem RING-NECKED DUCK at Loch Bhasapol and a juvenile DOTTEREL was at Balevullin (Jim Dickson/Stuart Gibson).
KINTYRE: A juvenile LONG-TAILED SKUA was seen from Rhunahaorine Point today (Tom Lowe).
TIREE: A YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER was at Balephuil early evening (John Bowler). A late Manx Shearwater and Puffin on a seawatch from Aird this pm (Jim Dickson/Stuart Gibson).
ISLAY: A report of a CACKLING GOOSE from the Loch Gruinart viewpoint platform at 15.40 and a different individual from the CACKLING GOOSE at Gruinart yesterday (John Overfield).
ISLAY: A GREY PHALAROPE was at a small rock pool just north of Saligo Bay (Tim Daley). Good numbers of Barnacle geese now arriving on Islay.
MID-ARGYLL: Small numbers of Redwing and Fieldfare beginning to arrive now – also some reports of Brambling.
NORTH ARGYLL: A report of another 2 LITTLE EGRET – at Port Ramsay/ Fènnachrochan, Lismore (David Jardine). This takes the current Argyll total to around 13 or 14 birds.
ISLAY: The RED-BREASTED GOOSE was seen again today – among a large group of Barnacle Geese (John Wills). Also at Loch Gruinart a juv RED KITE was reported by Teresa Morris.
TIREE: Juv PECTORAL SANDPIPER again at Loch an Eilein (John Bowler).
COWAL/ISLAY/KINTYRE/MID-ARGYLL: An update on LITTLE EGRET sightings – recent reports have included up to 6 at the Holy Loch/Loch Riddon in Cowal, 2 on Islay, 1 at Campbeltown Loch, Kintyre and 3 at Loch Gilp, Mid-Argyll. Worth looking out for others around our Argyll coastline and please report any you see to
ISLAY: An adult RED-BREASTED GOOSE of unknown origin was found with Barnacle Geese at Loch Gruinart today (James How).
TIREE: A Juv PECTORAL SANDPIPER was at Baugh with Golden Plovers (John Bowler). Could be the same bird seen briefly with Golden Plover at Barrapol last week?
TIREE: An early morning seawatch from Hynish produced; 1 juvenile SABINE’S GULL, 1 Grey Phalarope, 1 Leach’s Petrel, 11 Sooty Shearwater, 2 Pomarine Skua, 8 Arctic Skua, 12 Great Skua, 6 Arctic Tern, 4 Fulmar, 8 Black Guillemot, 4 GN Diver, 1 RT Diver, 68 Eider, 30 Shag, 190 Manx Shearwater, 1,230 large auk (mostly Razorbills), 1,835 Gannet, 3,630 Kittiwake (John Bowler).
ISLAY: A CURLEW SANDPIPER was at Loch Gruinart this morning (Sam Hood).
TIREE: A first-year male ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK was found in the morning at Balephuil (John Bowler, Jim Dickson, Stuart Gibson, David Jardine). The bird was very flighty and seen at three locations around Balephuil. A new species for Argyll and only the sixth record for Scotland if accepted by the BBRC. A first year COMMON ROSEFINCH was found at Balemartine in the morning (David Jardine).
COWAL: An adult MEDITERRANEAN GULL was at Blairmore, Loch Long today (Neil Hammatt).
KINTYRE: A SNOW BUNTING was near the Machrihanish seabird observatory this morning (Mandy Hodkinson).
TIREE: Single LAPLAND BUNTINGS were noted at Beinn Hough (David Jardine) and at The Reef (John Bowler). Female RING-NECKED DUCK still at Loch Bhasapol and male at Loch a’ Phuill.
TIREE: The juv SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER was seen again at Clachan, north Tiree this morning. Also, the female RING-NECKED DUCK is still at Loch Bhasapol and a male RING-NECKED DUCK new at Loch a’ Phuill. A probable – distant PECTORAL SANDPIPER at Barrapol and 2 SOOTY SHEARWATERS plus 9 Great Skuas past Hynish this morning.
TIREE: The juv SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER was seen again at Clachan, north Tiree this afternoon. Also, the female RING-NECKED DUCK is still at Loch Bhasapol and a Eurasian Coot there.