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Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Unusual scoter at Castlegregory

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A male scoter at Sandy Bay, near Castlegregory, caused a stir yesterday with thoughts that it might be a Black Scoter (see original photos HERE. The bird was again present this morning, just off the beach car park near the school - the only scoter in the bay at the moment. Initially it did seem to have a particularly striking yellow bill.

However, further views showed it to be a Common Scoter with an unusual amount of yellow, particularly, it seems, on its' left side. The photos here are all of the same bird, but the angle, distance and light all change the visibility of the yellow, at times seeming bright and large, at others, like the series below, much more subdued.

Male Common Scoter, Sandy Bay, Castlegregory, 3rd March (all photos: Michael O'Clery)