Sunday, 9 June 2013


I paid a few visits to the Coonagh Nature Reserve in late May and early June to see if the improving weather conditions and easterly airflow would deliver any new migrants.  Things were generally quiet on the migrant front though I did come across a pale looking Redpoll on the river bank at the southern end of the site on May 25th.

Redpoll  ©Tom Tarpey

I was also keeping a look out for any signs that the pair of Garganey that showed up earlier in the month were staying around to breed.  I found a drake there on May 25th, hiding away in a small pool off the south eastern end of the upper lagoon along with a drake Pochard.  Things were looking even better the following week when I found two pairs and also came across lone drakes on two occasions.  As the lone drakes were quite flighty it was difficult to tell if there were more than the two pairs present.  Interestingly one of the pairs was found outside the nature reserve boundary in the lagoon on the eastern side of the motorway adjoining the tunnel portal.
Distant view of Garganey pair at the eastern lagoon  ©Tom Tarpey