August 2022 Sightings

The first count of Tree Pipits from Ferry Hills came on the first of the month when 48 were seen. 14 Little Egrets were at Guardbridge and nearby at Dairsie there was a Red Kite noted. Letham Pools had six Greenshanks and eight Black-tailed Godwits on its muddy margins with a Green Sandpiper at Ballo Reservoir the next day. The 3rd began with an excellent record of an adult and two juvenile Little Terns at Kingsbarns. There were Mediterranean Gulls to be seen also, with eight at East Wemyss and three at Levenmouth. The number at East Wemyss rose to an amazing 81(including 48 juveniles) the following day with four adults also seen at Dysart, where seven Little Gulls moved west early morning. The 5th began with 112 Tree Pipits at Ferry Hills, then another White-rumped Sandpiper was found near Kilrenny Mill, the second record for the county, fast on the heels of the first at Letham Pools in July. A juvenile Ruff and 12 Little Egrets were at Edenside, the former being the first reported of the autumn. Then the following day seven Ruff flew west together past East Wemyss with 17 Mediterranean Gulls also there and 17 Little Egrets at Edenside. The 7th saw Green Sandpipers at Morton Lochs NNR and Lochore Meadows CP, six Whimbrels were at Balcomie then four passed Anstruther later.

The Ruff was still at Edenside on the 9th with four Whimbrels and a Greenshank at Ruddons Point. A Red Kite was again seen just south of the Tay Bridge on the A92 at Newport. The next morning 141 Tree Pipits flew over Ferry Hills and 18 Little Egrets were counted at Edenside later that day. Early on the 11th a Balearic Shearwater headed west into the Forth on a sunny morning at Fife Ness. A juvenile Little Ringed Plover was at Kilrenny Mill and 17 Mediterranean Gulls were counted from Seafield to Pathhead in the evening. The Little Ringed Plover was still at Kilrenny Mill the next day, while a passage juvenile Marsh Harrier was also noted there. A count of five Whimbrels was made on the coastal path from Elie to St Monans, while later that day on Edenside an adult Pectoral Sandpiper was picked out. On the 13th 15 Black-tailed Godwits and 30 Snipe were counted at Letham Pools and eight Greenshanks and an impressive 54 Whimbrels were at Boarhills, the latter flying south-east. 11 Mediterranean Gulls and eight Black-tailed Godwits passed East Braes, Kinghorn and a Green Sandpiper was at The Wilderness. The next day two Green Sandpipers were at Angle Park GP with five Greenshanks and 12 Black-tailed Godwits at Letham Pools. At East Braes, Kinghorn a Great Northern Diver, a Little Gull and five Mediterranean Gulls were noted.

The 15th was Mediterranean Gull day in the Kirkcaldy area with 21 (including 17 juveniles) at Dysart, a fantastic count for there, then six at the west end of the promenade. 17 Black-tailed Godwits were at Letham Pools and single Pied and Spotted Flycatchers were seen at Kilminning. At Fife Ness 128 Manx Shearwaters, seven Whimbrels and a large shearwater species which eluded definite identification, but was thought to be a Great Shearwater, passed. The next day Pathhead had six Mediterranean Gulls (including three juveniles) at first light feeding on the grass and just along the coast at Dysart 17 were counted (including 12 juveniles) with three Little Gulls also noted. A Spoonbill was found roosting with the egrets and herons at Guardbridge, while at Fife Ness two Pomarine Skuas were loitering for a while before heading into the Forth. The 17th was a memorable day at Fife Ness with not one but two Great Shearwaters passing the headland, with five Sooty Shearwaters, 367 Manx Shearwaters and a Pomarine Skua added to the list. Kinghorn had c11 Arctic Skuas and two Mediterranean Gulls and at Tayport three Brent Geese, seven Little Egrets and a Little Gull were seen. Fife Ness highlights for the 18th were nine Sooty Shearwaters, 194 Manx Shearwaters, a Black Tern, a Pomarine Skua and 71 Whimbrels south. Off Dysart a juvenile Black Tern, 71 Manx Shearwaters and six Mediterranean Gulls (including four juveniles) were seen. East Wemyss at midday had 22 Mediterranean Gulls (including 16 juveniles) and four Ruff showed at Letham Pools, rising to five the next day, when 28 Black-tailed Godwits were also present. At Out Head two juvenile Black Terns were feeding in a flock of at least 1000 terns at the estuary mouth on the 19th with one still present the following day. A Ruddy Shelduck turned up at Dalgety Bay on the 20th with five Ruff, 18 Black-tailed Godwits and an adult Hobby seen at Letham Pools. There was a good count of four Black Terns at Fife Ness and 16 Ravens at Lindores Loch were noted. A Fea’s-type Petrel was reported past Fife Ness around midday. A Spotted Redshank was a great find at Cameron Reservoir and other notable wader sightings on the 21st included 29 Black-tailed Godwits and seven Ruff at Letham Pools and four Ruff at Loch Gelly. At Ferry Hills 98 Tree Pipits were counted with a Black-throated Diver and a Green Sandpiper also seen. At Back Dykes, East Wemyss in the early afternoon 30 Mediterranean Gulls were present on the rocks (including 20 juveniles).

Continuing the recent trend of good waders in the county, an American Golden Plover was seen briefly on the Eden Estuary along with a Spotted Redshank, 25 Whimbrels and a Black Tern on the 22nd. Four Sooty Shearwaters and a Roseate Tern went past Fife Ness, seven Ruff and a Green Sandpiper were at Letham Pools and a juvenile Red-necked Grebe was at Pettycur also that day. Two Redstarts were at Ferry Hills the next day, six Ruff were at Letham Pools and two Sooty Shearwaters were seen from Fife Ness. The upper Forth was the place to be on the 24th with Kinghorn having a Long-tailed Skua, 16 Arctic Skuas, three Mediterranean Gulls and a great sighting of a juvenile Little Tern. Nearby at Pettycur Sands there was a juvenile Black Tern and two more juvenile Black Terns and three Pomarine Skuas were off Dalgety Bay, with another Pomarine Skua seen from Ferry Hills later. At East Wemyss there were 74 Mediterranean Gulls at the Back Dykes roost (including 54 juveniles). The following morning at Dysart an adult Pomarine Skua and 14 Mediterranean Gulls (including 10 juveniles) were seen, and Ferry Hills had 18 Arctic Skuas, 13 Whimbrels, six Spotted Flycatchers and 146 Tree Pipits. The juvenile Black Tern was still at Pettycur Sands, with 12 Black-tailed Godwits at Newmills Bay. A new Scottish record count of Mediterranean Gulls of 93 (including 52 juveniles) was recorded on the 25th at Back Dykes, East Wemyss. What makes this area of rocky shoreline in a small Fife village a magnet for this species is the question, but long may it continue. On the 26th at Letham Pools, a Green Sandpiper and eight Ruff were seen and at Ferry Hills 21 Whimbrels, 71 Tree Pipits and a Redstart were noted. Three Little Gulls and 14 Whimbrels were at Fife Ness and a juvenile Spotted Redshank was at Guardbridge. A Honey-buzzard and a Red Kite were seen from Ferry Hills on the 27th and a Wood Sandpiper turned up at the Wilderness. Ruddons Point had at least six Black Terns in the area with two juveniles also seen from Dysart and two Black-throated Divers noted from East Braes, Kinghorn. Five Sooty Shearwaters flew past Fife Ness on the 28th with 120 Manx Shearwaters also recorded. Boarhills was host to a Pied Flycatcher and later that day a Hobby, while at Dalgety Bay an adult Pomarine Skua was seen. Seven Ruff and 17 Black-tailed Godwits were at Letham Pools and a Green Sandpiper was at Holl Reservoir. The highlight from Fife Ness on the 29th was a juvenile Long-tailed Skua, with a supporting cast of 19 Sooty Shearwaters, 183 Manx Shearwaters and three Little Gulls. Eight Mediterranean Gulls were at Dysart with a Pomarine Skua still in the Forth at Burntisland and the Spotted Redshank was on the Eden Estuary. Three Ruff, 18 Black-tailed Godwits and seven Greenshanks were at Letham Pools on the 30th with 16 Sooty Shearwaters and 331 Manx Shearwaters at Fife Ness. The last day of the month started with two juvenile Long-tailed Skuas heading inland at Ferry Hills, with another at Fife Ness, where five Little Gulls, seven Sooty Shearwaters and 179 Manx Shearwaters were also noted with a Pomarine Skua off Kinghorn.

Information supplied courtesy of Malcolm Ware