I'm back in good old England now after a rather fantastic trip to Ireland. It really was a fantastic trip, despite being focused nearly wholly on gulls. And I must say I'm now much more into gulls than I previously had been. In my trip I managed to see 13 gull species, more than I had previously managed in my whole life. So yes it was a success. However I hate to disappoint any larophiles out there, but this post is not on gulls. Although I won't deny there will be a few.
After my initial success with a Glaucous Gull at Kenmare Pier, the next birding trip was a rather spontaneous one down to Co. Cork. More precisely Cahermore, stopping at Castletownbere on the way. So it was, after a very windy drive through the mountains we arrived at Castletown. This is where the gulls come in. The first bird we got our eyes on was an fine adult Glaucous Gull, soon followed by my first Ring-billed and Yellow Legged Gulls. So not a bad stop at all.
After that it was on to Cahermore, where a female King Eider (females are sometimes referred to as 'Queen' Eiders) had been seen recently. It didn't take long at all to locate her, thankfully there were no other eiders there which made the job a little easier. She was unfortunately quite a way off. Too far for anything more than an extreme record shot. Still, a nice bird to watch. Even at a distance the characteristic markings were fairly clear, a pale supercilium and 'smiling' gape line.
By my standards a pretty good day out indeed...