June 2009

On the 1st of June a walk on the West Highland Way to southeast of the Glencoe ski-lift gave me my first introduction to montane plants including Alpine Lady’s-mantle in disused quarry just to northeast of Clachaig Inn, Petty Whin, Northern Bedstraw, Chickweed-wintergreen and Cowberry. The best and only good night of moth-trapping so far this year with 27 species coming to the light-trap. The Charringtons saw 30 Painted Lady butterflies on the track beside Treshnish wood. Hilary and Tony Renkin and family guests at Duill and Shian cottages, Treshnish saw 2 Mountain Hares below their cottages.
On the 2nd at Loch Frisa, new used nest-holes of Sand Martins were found by the viewing bench to east of the fish-farm with some holes to the east and west of the bench but there appeared to be only one pair at each hole (1 entered one of the holes to the east of the bench and 1 circled one of the holes to the west). The main colony of 4-8 pairs is further east and has been in use for at least 4 years. There was a pair of Red-breasted Mergansers at Loch Frisa. A Red-throated Diver was in Calgary bay. Hilary and Tony Renkin and family saw 2 immature White-tailed Eagles at Treshnish Point, 1 Golden Eagle between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 6 pairs of Fulmars on cliffs on the north side of Treshnish Point, 2 Greylag Geese flying northwards over Ensay Burn and an Otter at Ensay burn mouth.
Also at Loch Frisa 1 Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary butterfly was at the north end near the fish-farm, where there were also 13 Small Heath, 9 Green-veined White and 4 Painted Lady butterflies. Marsh Thistle, Lesser Spearwort and Yellow Rattle were flowering there.
Also on the 2nd recently fledged Song Thrushes and 2 Greylag Geese were by Ensay burn mouth, where an Oystercatcher chick was also calling from thick vegetation. Pineappleweed (-14), Marsh Thistle (+12), Heath Bedstraw (-3), Common Cow-wheat (-32) and Common Butterwort were flowering by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. Common Valerian was flowering by Ensay burn mouth. Melancholy Thistle was in the upper part of Treshnish wood near Treshnish Old Schoolhouse but not flowering yet. Meadowsweet (-18) was about to flower near Ensay burn cattle-grid. Northern Marsh-orchid (same date as previous earliest, although a possible purpurella x maculata hybrid was flowering at Treshnish on 23/05/2007) was flowering along the marshy shoreline below Treshnish House. Common Twayblade, Lesser Spearwort (-57) and Tufted Vetch (-13) were flowering below Treshnish House.
Again on the 2nd there were 22+ Painted Lady, 2 Green-veined White and 1 Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary butterflies in and around Treshnish wood and 2 Beautiful Golden Y moths were in the meadow below Treshnish House/Treshnish graveyard.
On the 3rd 2 White-tailed Eagle juveniles flew over Treshnish lochan towards Calgary, these birds were also seen by Hilary and Tony Renkin and family who also saw 1 Golden Eagle between Treshnish and Haunn cottages. Visiting botanist Lynne Farrell was amazed at the number of Vicia orobus around Toechtamhor cottage, many of which were flowering. She said she had never seen such numbers in Scotland and told me also that Fragrant Orchid (-4), which is about to flower here and is common on Treshnish, is uncommon on Mull. Whilst counting the orobus I found a large Frog Orchid, a plant I had searched in vain for last year at a known site along the coast. Lynne found another plant nearby. There were a few Greater Butterfly-orchids (0) in flower with many more emerging, at least 5 Small-white Orchids (0) flowering and a large plant of Common Centaury was found although not yet in flower, all around Toechtamhor. Painted Lady butterflies were abundant.
On the 4th a recently fledged Meadow Pipit was around Treshnish cow-barn and a Twite was between Treshnish and Haunn cottages. A family of 7 Ravens were on Beinn Duill, Haunn. Painted Lady butterflies were abundant. Creeping Forget-me-not was flowering between Treshnish and Haunn cottages. Wood Bitter-vetch Vicia orobus and was found on most of the small hillocks in the fields between Treshnish and Haunn cottages. Northern Marsh-orchid was found in small numbers usually 1 or 2 in the wet areas there. Greater Butterfly-orchid was scarce outside of the Toechtamhor cottage area with only three singles found in the fields between Treshnish and Haunn cottages. Sheep’s Sorrel and Common Sorrel had been flowering for some time at Treshnish House and Redshank was at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. Springbeauty was flowering as a weed in Treshnish garden.
On the 5th a pair of Golden Eagles were hunting over the Common Gull colony and below Treshnish House. There were 2 Lesser Redpolls below Treshnish House. Hilary and Tony Renkin and family saw 6-10 Linnets around Treshnish House and reported seeing a Lapwing from their cottages each early evening between 29th May to 5th June and on the 5th a Mountain Hare in their garden at Duill and Shian cottages. Painted Lady butterflies are abundant. Elder has been flowering for a few days in Treshnish wood. There were lots of Common Twayblade at a large new site in the meadow above the boathouse on the southern side near the wood. Common Spotted-orchid (-9), Heath Bedstraw (0) [and Zigzag Clover] were flowering there.
On the 6th a pair of Golden Eagles was hunting over the Common Gull colony in the evening and one was over Beinn Duill in the morning. A Quail was heard in the evening near Toechtamhor cottage. 3 Collared Doves were in Treshnish House garden, the highest number yet recorded here. 1 Small Heath butterfly was near Treshnish House. Painted Lady butterflies are still in abundance.
On the 7th 3 Greylag Geese flew over Treshnish House. Common Valerian (-8) was flowering near Treshnish House and Oxeye Daisy (-2) was flowering at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, where Yarrow (+24) was about to flower. Another appalling moth-trapping night with NO moths inside the trap and only two outside the trap! Painted Lady butterflies are still in abundance.
On the 8th a Quail was heard calling a loud fluty ‘Whip pur Wit’ repeated sometimes 3-4 times and seen in the afternoon by the gate to Haunn field and heard near Toechtamhor cottage. Sometimes the song starts with an introductory call. The bird was also seen in flight. A Golden Eagle was on Cruachan Treshnish. A male Reed Bunting and a Sedge Warbler were singing below Haunn cottages. A recently fledged Wheatear was above Treshnish boathouse. A Mountain Hare was above Treshnish boathouse.
Also on the 8th, 5 Small-Pearl-bordered Fritillary butterflies were below Haunn cottages and 1 was at Treshnish Point. 2 Small Heath butterflies were below Haunn cottages, 2 were at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 3 were at Treshnish Point and 8 were near Treshnish cow-barn. 5 Green-veined White butterflies were near Treshnish cow-barn. 1 Chimney Sweeper moth was below Haunn cottages and another was near Treshnish cow-barn. Painted Lady butterflies are still in abundance. A probable Common Hawker dragonfly was seen between Treshnish and Haunn cottages.
Continuing with the 8th Heath Speedwell was flowering below Treshnish House and Bell Heather has been flowering for a few days by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. Lady’s Bedstraw (+3) was flowering by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. Square-stalked St John’s-wort (-38) and Marsh Lousewort (-2) were flowering below Treshnish cow-barn. Kidney Vetch (+30), Sea Plantain, Goldenrod (-4) and at least 26 plants of Bloody Crane’s-bill (-16) were flowering, all above the upper cliff behind Treshnish Point, where Slender St John’s-wort (+2) was also about to flower. 41 new sites for Wood Bitter-vetch Vicia orobus were located between Treshnish cow-barn and Treshnish Point and Skoma field has yet to be explored!
On the 9th an alarmed Common Sandpiper and Ringed Plover were obviously nesting at Port Langamull. There were 2-4 Linnets and a Mistle Thrush was carrying food for young at Langamull, 19 Greylag Geese flew over Langamull house where Starlings were nesting. There were 5 Eider Duck females with 17 chicks at Calgary bay beach. 1 Small Heath and 2 Painted Lady butterflies were at Cillchriosd. Marsh Cinquefoil (-27) was flowering at Cillchriosd. 2 Early Marsh-orchids and 3 Frog Orchids were flowering at Langamull beach. 4 Slender Scotch Burnet moths were found to west of Langamull beach and 92 were near Langamull house, this is the highest count at this site of this rare moth. At Langamull house there was also a Chimney Sweeper moth, 2 Small Heath, 20+ Painted Lady butterflies and 1 probable Black Darter dragonfly.
On the 10th there were 2 House Martins flying around Kilninian church and there were rowdy obviously nesting Starlings in two spots in the trees near Tostary. An Otter was seen from the road on the northern shores of Loch na Keal.
Also on the 10th on a walk from Knockvologan to Tràigh Gheal on the Ross of Mull, 1 Golden-ringed Dragonfly, 1 Four-spotted Chaser dragonfly and 3 Small Heath and 1 Large Heath butterflies were seen. South of Torr Fada Bog Asphodel (-7) and Common Cow-wheat were flowering along the track and on the rocky outcrops between Torr Fada and Tràigh Gheal Bearberry was common. At Tràigh Gheal a Beautiful Demoiselle was photographed in the wood and along the shore there was a Silver Y moth. Plants at Tràigh Gheal included: Sea Rocket, Thyme Broomrape, Early Marsh-orchid, Skullcap, Common Centaury, Common Cornsalad, Gypsywort, an agrimony species and a possible Sea Radish, which would be a first for Mull (need to return to check fruits).
On the 11th the Quail was heard calling several times in the afternoon near Toechtamhor cottage and Twite was seen there. 3 Painted Lady butterflies were seen around Treshnish wood, 2 Green-veined White butterflies were seen at Haunn and 1 near Treshnish House and 1 Small Heath butterfly was also at Haunn and 1 near Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. Guests at west cottage, Haunn saw 3 Common Blue butterflies at Treshnish Point. 2 Common Spotted-orchid (-1) plants were flowering by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse and Shepherd’s-purse (+7) was flowering in Treshnish garden.
On the 12th a Curlew flew over Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. Fledged Wheatear young were between Treshnish and Haunn cottages (JS & TS, guests at Shieling cottage). 3 Painted Lady butterflies were seen around Treshnish wood. 2 Green-veined White and 1 Small Heath butterflies were around Treshnish House. The Quail was NOT heard during a 11pm visit to the Toechtamhor area.
On the 13th a pair of Curlews were calling and flying together around Treshnish lochan. When the Common Gulls there, mob a patrolling Golden Eagle a Curlew usually joins in the alarm display. Recently fledged Grey Wagtail and Wheatear were beside Middle cottage, Haunn and an adult Common Whitethroat with faecal sack and an adult Linnet was calling from the nest, both by East cottage, Haunn. A family group of 5 Ravens were near Haunn and a Lesser Redpoll flew over Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. The Quail was heard calling several times throughout the day near Toechtamhor cottage and guests at east accidentally flushed it in front of their car. A Blackcap was heard at Treshnish graveyard, Twite and possible Lesser Redpoll below Treshnish House and Small Heath and Painted Lady butterflies and Chimney Sweeper moths in fields [below Treshnish house] (JS & TS, guests at Sheiling cottage).
Also on the 13th, 2 Green-veined White butterflies were seen at Haunn with 1 near Treshnish House and 1 Small Heath butterfly was also at Haunn. There was only 1 Painted Lady butterfly seen. A possible Golden-ringed Dragonfly was seen around Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. Common Valerian (+9), Yarrow (+30), Slender St John’s-wort and the rose by the Buddleja are flowering along Treshnish wood track and Meadowsweet is opening there. 2 Common Centaury by Toechtamhor drive are in bud.
On the 14th at 12.30 an adult White-tailed Eagle with prey flew over Treshnish Old Schoolhouse flying in Loch Frisa direction. Guests from East cottage, Haunn also saw this bird and said it came from Port Haunn direction. Wheatear fledglings were by the road at the second Ensay bridge. 2 Common Sandpipers were agitated and obviously breeding below Reudle cliffs. A Kestrel with young in the nest was at Reudle cliffs and a Twite with food for a chick also there. During a 2 hour timed tetrad Bird Atlas survey of the Reudle-Burg area 34 species were recorded and breeding was confirmed for 20 of them.
There were 2 male Cuckoos seen at Crackaig, many fledged Wheatears ‘everywhere’, Fulmars towards Treshnish Point, Common Blue butterfly between Crackaig and Haunn, Dark-green and possibly Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary butterflies and Large Red Damselflies on path to Glac Gugairidh, Green Tiger Beetles on path down from Crackaig, ‘Narrow-leaved Marsh-orchid’ between Haunn and Treshnish cottages, Bog Asphodel coming into flower near Port Haunn (JS & TS, guests at Sheiling cottage).
Also on the 14th, There were 13 Small Heath butterflies at Reudle house, 5 at Reudle cliffs, 1 at Burg and 28 below Reudle House. 1 Green-veined White butterflies at Reudle house, 1 below Reudle cliffs, 2 below Reudle House, 1 Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary at Reudle house, 1 below Reudle cliffs and 13 below Reudle House, 5 Painted Lady butterfly below Reudle House, 1 at Burg and 1 below Reudle cliffs, 2 Common Blue butterflies below Reudle House and 2 below Reudle cliffs. There was 1 Transparent Burnet moth at Reudle cliffs. 1 Golden-ringed Dragonfly and 3 probable Common Hawker dragonflies around Reudle house. Selfheal (0), Bog Asphodel (-3) and Thyme-leaved Speedwell were flowering below Reudle. Common Centaury, Goldenrod (+2) and Spear Thistle (-30) were flowering below Reudle cliffs, where Hemp-agrimony (+20) was about a day from flowering.
On the 15th during a 2 hour timed tetrad Bird Atlas survey of the Burg-Kilninian area 35 species were recorded and breeding was confirmed for 18 of them. I couldn’t find the nests of the House Martins at Kilninian but I can return and if found add them to the Roving Records. Whilst adding the data for this final tetrad I noticed that someone has added a pair of Bullfinches to the roving records to the eastern Gometra tetrad in summer 2008 or 2009. This is a new species for out 10x10km square.
Also on the 15th, 1 Golden Eagle was seen low down near the summit of the Ensay-Burg road. A recently fledged Common Sandpiper was at the second bridge between Ensay and Burg. A Hawfinch came to the feeding station of Andrew and Helen Mortley at Frachadil, Calgary. This is apparently the first time this species has been seen on Mull, which along with the Nuthatch seen last year must make this one of the most exciting bird feeders on Mull!
A Curlew and Cuckoo seen above Treshnish lochan (JS & TS, guests at Sheiling cottage).
Also on the 15th, 4 Small Heath butterflies at Burg, 2 Common Blue butterflies at Burg, 1 Painted Lady butterfly at Tostary and 1 at Kilninian and 1 Peacock butterfly and 1 Green-veined White butterfly was at Kilninian. 1 Chimney Sweeper moth was at Kilninian with another at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. 1 Common Hawker dragonfly was at Burg, 1 Four-spotted Chaser dragonfly, 1 Large Red, 1 Common Blue and many Blue-tailed Damselflies were seen at Loch Peallach, Mishnish. Agrimony was flowering along the Kilninian shore.
On the 16th Quail was heard again Haunn, a Greylag Goose was on the water to north of Port Haunn and Snipe was heard calling at Reudle Schoolhouse bog. 2 Curlews at Treshnish lochan (along with the usual Common Gulls) were agitated by a passing Lesser Black-backed Gull and are probably breeding nearby.
Also on the 16th, 1 Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 1 between Port Haunn and Crackiag, 1 Small Heath at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 1 between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 4 at Haunn, 2 south of Haunn, 1 Common Blue butterfly between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 1 Painted Lady butterfly at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 1 between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 1 at Haunn, 1 Green-veined White butterfly at Haunn. 1 White Ermine and 1 Silver Y moths between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 1 Chimney Sweeper moth at Haunn. Small-white Orchid were beside track to Haunn (JS & TS, guests at Sheiling cottage). Marsh Lousewort (+15) was flowering between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, Meadow Vetchling (+2) was flowering at Haunn, Slender St John’s-wort (+10) was flowering at Crackaig, Cross-leaved Heath was flowering near Reudle Schoolhouse bog.
On the 17th an Eider Duck with 2 chicks and 2 Twite were at Ensay burn mouth, newly fledged Goldfinch chicks were at Treshnish graveyard.
Fulmars were seen at Treshnish Point, a Stonechat pair were in the reeds below Haunn cottages, a ‘family?’ of about 7 Ravens were over the Common Gull colony at Treshnish lochan, 2+ Common Blue and 2+ Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary butterflies were at Treshnish Point, Bloody Cranesbill was flowering on way to Treshnish Point, Bog Asphodel and Melancholy Thistle were flowering at Treshnish Point, Sundew was at Treshnish Point (JS & TS, guests at Sheiling cottage).
4 Thyme Bromrape plants were found at Ensay burn mouth. Bramble (+2), Hedge Woundwort (-7) and Tutsan (-13) were flowering, Greater Bird’s-foot-trefoil (+3), Enchanter’s-nightshade (-13) and Wood Sage (+13) were nearly flowering and Meadowsweet (-3) was still not totally flowering, all by the farm-track through Treshnish wood. Pyrenean Lily was flowering in Treshnish wood. Wild Strawberry was fruiting at Ensay burn mouth, Scots Lovage was flowering to east of Treshnish boathouse, Brookweed (-37) was flowering at Treshnish boathouse and Hemlock Water-dropwort (+7) had been flowering there for a few days. Red Bartsia (+10) [and Zigzag Clover] were flowering below Treshnish House.
On the 18th a male Hen Harrier was seen about half way down the Dervaig-Salen road. At the Aros river estuary there was a Greylag Goose with goslings, 2 Greenfinches, 1 Spotted Flycatcher, 1 Mistle Thrush and a Grey Wagtail family with fledglings and beside the coastal road from there to Salen an Otter and a singing Wood Warbler. Speckled Wood butterfly was at Calgary Art in Nature walk (JS & TS, guests at Sheiling cottage). Broad-leaved and Curled Dock had been flowering for some time at Treshnish cow-barn and were bashed with the strimmer!
On the 19th Goldfinch fledglings were beside Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 1 Twite was at Duill cottage.
On the 20th 2 Linnets were by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, later a Peregrine flew over Treshnish House alarming the Common gull colony whilst 2 Golden Eagles soared over Cruachan Treshnish. A Meadow Pipit with food for young was by Treshnish cow-barn and Wheatear and Hooded Crow fledglings were near Skoma field. Many Vicia orobus plants were found in and around Skoma medieval village wherever plants were out of reach of the sheep and especially on the un-grazed area on the northern steep slope. Wood Sage (+16) and Selfheal (+6) were flowering by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse.
On the 21st 3 Wood Pigeons were at Burg with another by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. House Martin nests were occupied at Ulva boathouse and Goldfinch fledglings and a Common Whitethroat with food for young were nearby. A female Hen Harrier was hunting near Ulva boathouse and a male was seen further inland at the Livingstone Cave crossroad. A Woodcock was sitting on a fence-post at Ulva ferry, where a Greenshank was also seen. The Quail was heard for the last time near Treshnish cow-barn and on this day a Quail was also heard on the Salen-Dervaig road (see Mullbirds website for details).
Also on the 21st, I saw 6 Transparent Burnet moths whilst looking for Slender Scotch Burnet moths on the western side of Ulva and at least 2 more were found by others of the team. On the previous (sunnier) day they had found many Slender Scotch Burnets and 2 new sites with many more satellite sites (depending on how a site is defined). A Small Pear-bordered Fritillary was seen near the Livingstone Cave crossroad and 4 Six-spot Burnet moths and a Dark-green Fritillary butterfly were seen nearby. Wood Avens (Herb Bennet) was found at the edge of the woodland near Ulva boathouse. This species has been seen by botanists at Treshnish Point. Common Ragwort (-9), and Marsh Ragwort (+6) were flowering on Ulva. Moth trapping at Treshnish brought 25 species to the light including Elephant Hawkmoth, Drinker, The Confused and the beautiful Northern Eggar, which was a new species for me although the Charringtons had seen it on 8th July 2004.
On the 23rd on a walk around Speinne Mòr, Golden Eagle, male Hen Harrier and Red-throated Diver were seen along with breeding Curlew (agitated), female Mallard, calling Snipe and a Meadow Pipit on eggs. A fawn Red Deer was also seen at very close range. It approached a female, which appeared to be the mother and eventually the female saw mw and ran off, I presumed with the fawn following. As I walked a few hundred yards further on I came across my first Lesser Twayblade orchid on moss on open grassy moorland and whilst photographing it I saw the fawn had followed me and was approaching. As I turned to face it, it bowed its head in a nodding gesture and then as it seemed to realise I was not it’s mother moved away. A few hundred yards further away I noticed another small female making this gesture to another larger deer, which was alarmed by me. The nodding deer then became alarmed by me and ran off after the first. I am not sure what this nodding behavior signifies.
Lepidoptera on the walk included: Small Heath (22+), Large Heath (6), Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary (12), Dark-green Fritillary (1), Painted Lady (1), Meadow Brown (1) butterflies and Chimney Sweeper (1), Common Heath (1) and many Silver-ground Carpet moths. There was also a Wood Tiger moth flying in the daytime at Caol Lochan, this was the first time I have seen this species and at first I thought it was a Marsh Fritillary butterfly until later on the 30th of June when I saw this moth on Carn Mòr. Dragonflies included: Four-spotted Chaser (6), Common Hawker (4), Large Red (1), Blue-tailed and many Common Blue Damselflies. Plants included: Lesser Twayblade on moss on an open grassy hillside, Lesser Butterfly-orchid, Early Marsh-orchid, Oblong-leaved Sundew, Marsh Arrowgrass, White and Yellow Water-lily, Fir, Lesser and Alpine Clubmoss, Cowberry, Crowberry and Dwarf Willow.
Also on the 23rd, a Painted Lady was also seen at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse.
On the 24th there were 20 Eider Ducks near the beach at Calgary Bay. There were between 11-15 chicks (the ambiguity due to some which have been approaching adult size). An adult Starling with food at Ensay obviously had young. A Greenfinch was in the garden of first house at Calgary (coming from Ensay), Goldfinch and Common Sandpiper fledglings were on north side of Calgary beach and 2 Ringed Plovers were on Calgary beach. Conversations with neighbours have revealed that Short-eared Owls were first recorded at Reudle Schoolhouse in August 2005 and have been seen every year since then except this year 2009.
Also on the 24th, 2 Small Heath and 1 Green-veined White butterflies and 1 Common Hawker dragonfly were along the farm track in Treshnish wood with another Green-veined White and Small Heath north of Ensay farmhouse and another Small Heath and a Common Blue closer to Calgary. A Meadow Brown butterfly and a Chimney Sweeper moth were on the north side of Calgary beach. Whilst investigating a report of Slender Scotch Burnet at Inivea, Calgary, 24 Transparent Burnets and 8 Six-spot Burnets were found. Fairy Flax (-10) was flowering below Inivea and Enchanter’s-nightshade (-27) was flowering on north side of Calgary beach. Bloody Crane’s-bill, Hemp Agrimony and an agrimonia species were found on path to north of Calgary beach, whilst on the beach itself Skullcap, Sea-milkwort, Biting Stonecrop, Common Stork’s-bill and Ray’s Knotgrass were flowering and Sea Rocket was in a vegetative state. Greater Bird’s-foot-trefoil (-7) had been flowering a few days along farm track in Treshnish wood.
On the 25th there were newly fledged Siskins at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 2 pairs of Twite and newly fledged Meadow Pipits between Treshnish and Haunn cottages. A Whinchat was in the field to east of Treshnish headland and a Sedge Warbler was below Haunn cottages. A Swift was seen in the evening by Treshnish cow-barn and about an hour later possibly the same was at Haunn.
Also on the 25th, 1 Dark-green Fritillary, 1 Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary and 1 Small Heath butterflies were by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse with another Small Heath between Treshnish and Haunn cottages and 2 Red Admiral butterflies were seen 1 at the cow barn and another half way between Treshnish and Haunn cottages. Corn Spurrey was flowering at Treshnish House and a Harebell (-2) was flowering in field to east of Treshnish headland.
On the 26th fledged Swallows were at Treshnish House and Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. A Meadow Brown and a pair of Common Blue butterflies mating were below Haunn cottages and there were many Chimney Sweeper moths there and also a Four-spotted Chaser dragonfly. Purple-loosestrife was in bud below Haunn cottages.
On the 27th there were 2 Twites at Haunn, 2 Red-throated Divers were in Calgary Bay and a flock of about 20 Starlings were flying at dusk towards the Treshnish point roost. There was also 1 Small Heath, 1 Painted Lady and 1 Meadow Brown butterflies at Haunn. 5 Bird’s-nest Orchid plants were in flower at a site in North Mull and Hogweed (-3) had probably been flowering for a few days near Treshnish House.
On the 28th there were Siskins feeding on the thistles around Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 1 Lesser Redpoll and 1 Linnet were below Treshnish House, fledged young of Robin, Wren, Great Tit and Siskin were in Treshnish wood. A Sedge Warbler, an alarmed obviously breeding adult male Whinchat and a family of recently fledged Twite were below Treshnish House and a pair of Twite were also between Treshnish and Haunn cottages. There was a recently fledged Dunnock at Treshnish cow-barn and a pair of Red-throated Divers, were offshore below Treshnish House.
Also on the 28th, there was 1 Red Admiral butterfly at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 3 Painted Lady butterflies below Treshnish House, 2 Small Heath butterflies below Treshnish House, 1 at Skoma, 2 Common Blue butterflies below Treshnish House, 2 Meadow Brown butterflies below Treshnish House, 2 at Skoma, 1 at Haunn, 43+ Chimney Sweeper moths below Treshnish House and 1 Large Yellow Underwing moth at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. There was also 1 Golden-ringed Dragonfly by Treshnish Old Schoolhouse. There have been no sightings of Highland Darter at Treshnish or elsewhere so far this year usually they are abundant by this time. Broad-leaved Willowherb (-6) flowering in Treshnish wood, Whorled Loosestrife was flowering by Treshnish House (presumably this is a garden plant) and Grass-of-Parnassus (-13) was flowering near the shore below Treshnish House.
On the 29th a newly fledged Cuckoo was perched on a fence being fed by an adult Meadow Pipit, 2 Twites were between Treshnish and Haunn cottages and 1 was singing between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 2 Linnets between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 1 newly fledged Whinchat was between Treshnish and Haunn cottages and 2 obviously with young nearby at Treshnish Point, 1+ Sedge Warbler was at Haunn, 1 Reed Bunting was singing below Haunn cottages, Snipe were calling at Haunn and 1 Great Skua was chasing a Herring Gull off Treshnish Point.
Also on the 29th, there was 1 Common Blue butterfly by Treshnish Old schoolhouse, 1 Meadow Brown butterfly by Treshnish Old schoolhouse, 23+ below Treshnish cow-barn, 9 between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 2 at Haunn, 3 at Treshnish Point, 18+ Small Heath butterflies below Treshnish cow-barn, 7+ between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 4 Common Blue butterflies between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 3 Dark-green Fritillary butterflies between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 2 at Haunn, 1 Painted Lady butterfly at Haunn, 3 at Treshnish Point, 11+ Chimney Sweeper moths below Treshnish cow-barn, 8 between Treshnish and Haunn cottages, 53+ at Haunn, 10+ at Treshnish Point, 1 Six-spot Burnet moth below Treshnish cow-barn, 11 at Treshnish Point, 1 at Haunn, 1 Silver-ground Carpet moth was at Haunn. 18 macro-moth species came to the light-trap the least common being Green Silver-lines and Ingrailed Clay.
Continuing with the 29th, There were many plants of Wood Bitter-vetch Vicia orobus and Bloody Crane’s-bill on the east side of Treshnish headland along with 3 patches of Dwarf Juniper. Wild Angelica (0) and Common Ragwort (+4) were flowering on the hill above Treshnish Point.
On the 30th there were 2 Sand Martins and a newly fledged Whinchat beyond the summit of the Ensay-Burg road. A Swift was on Beinn an Lochain. There was 1 White-tailed Eagle on Cruachan Odhar (possibly with white wing-tag) and later 1 or 2 to the northwest of Beinn an Lochain. There was also an unidentified largish raptor with a full crop, seen from a low angle, on Cruachan Odhar; the most unusual and striking feature was the tail which appeared to be all white, I am not sure about the tail tip but most of the tail was definitely whitish without the clear upper-tail-coverts band of a ring-tailed harrier, the brief glimpse of the under-wing showed a buzzard type pattern with a black carpal patch. Presumably this was just an unusually pale-tailed Common Buzzard. There was another smaller raptor flying nearby. In the late evening there were about 200 Starlings (adults and juveniles) gathered on the electric wires near Ensay burn preparing to fly to the Treshnish Point roost cave, a little later about 30 were seen flying in that direction over Treshnish wood.
Also on the 30th, There was 1 Dark-green Fritillary butterfly to the east of the summit of Ensay-Burg road, 30+ Small Heath butterflies to the east of the summit of Ensay-Burg road, 1 on Cruachan Odhar, 40+ on Beinn an Lochain, 4 to north of Beinn an Lochain, 14+ on Carn Mòr, 6 Meadow Brown butterflies to the east of the summit of Ensay-Burg road, 1 on Beinn an Lochain, 2 on Carn Mòr, 1 [Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary] to the east of the summit of Ensay-Burg road, 2 Common Blue butterflies on Beinn an Lochain, 1 Painted Lady butterfly was on the summit of Carn Mòr, 1 Red Admiral butterfly at Treshnish Old Schoolhouse, 1 on the summit of Carn Mòr. 1 Beautiful Golden Y moth was on Cruachan Odhar and at least 8 Wood Tiger moths flying around restlessly together on the south side of Carn Mòr with another seen about a hundred metres to the south and there was another at Lochan a’ Chuirn.
Continuing with the 30th, there was 1 Large Red Damselfly on Cruachan Odhar, 3 on Beinn an Lochain, 4 on Carn Mòr, 1 Common Blue Damselfly on Cruachan Odhar, which was abundant on Beinn an Lochain (some may have been Blue-tailed), 16+ at bogs to north of Beinn an Lochain, 1 Highland Darter dragonfly on Cruachan Odhar, 1 Golden-ringed Dragonfly on Beinn an Lochain, 1 on Carn Mòr, 1 Four-spotted Chaser dragonfly on Beinn an Lochain, 4 at bogs to north of Beinn an Lochain, 4 on Carn Mòr.
Continuing with the 30th, 3 Bog Orchids (-22) flowering at the same spot as last year beyond the summit of the Ensay-Burg road, Marsh Willowherb (0) was flowering on Cruachan Odhar, Ivy-leaved Crowfoot (-34) had been flowering for a few days on Beinn an Lochain. Crowbery was found on the summits of Beinn an Lochain and Carn Mòr and Cowberry, Dwarf Willow and Fir Clubmoss were on Carn Mòr, the latter being quite common on these hills.
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