April 2024 Sightings

April started with a few sightings coming in of Sand Martins, Swallows and Wheatears, though none were in large numbers. A White-fronted Goose was with Greylags and Mute Swans in a grass field on the north shore of Cameron Reservoir (4th), and an Osprey was seen heading over Skelpie Farm and the first of many White Wagtails this spring was at Luthrie, alongside 25 Pied Wagtails and 75 Meadow Pipits. At least four Ospreys, three Ravens, a female Merlin and four Kestrels were seen at Loch Glow (5th), the drake Smew and an Osprey were seen at Cameron Reservoir (6th) and still present at Kilconquhar Loch was the female Long-tailed Duck. Also noted there were 11 Red-breasted Mergansers and an early House Martin. A Common Sandpiper was at Guardbridge (7th) and seen at Kinghorn were four Long-tailed Ducks, three Red-breasted Mergansers and c40 Common Scoters. There was a more substantial flock of Sand Martins seen at Loch Fitty, with c400 noted.

A drake Pochard, the first Blackcaps and six House Martins were seen at Birnie and Gaddon Lochs LNR (8th) and seen off Fife Ness were one Arctic Tern N, four Long-tailed Ducks S, five Red throated Divers N and three Black-throated Divers N. There was a good count of 56 Red breasted Mergansers at the mouth of the River Leven at Leven and two Ring Ouzels showed well at Kilminning (9th). Seen heading over Ferry Hills (10th) were a Brambling and 3220 Pink-feet N. White Wagtails were seen again, with four at Dalgety Bay and seven at Braefoot Plantation and seen passing Fife Ness were two Sandwich Terns, 21 Common Scoters, four Red-throated Divers and c20 Pink-footed Geese, whilst at Lower Largo (12th), two Black-throated Divers, 500 Common Scoters and 50 Velvet Scoters were seen. 350 Common Scoters and two Sandwich Terns were seen from Kinghorn and a superb male Redstart was a great find in a St Andrews garden. Two Greenshanks were at the much-missed pool at Rossie Bog, two Pintail, one Whimbrel, two Wheatears and four Brent Geese were seen at Coble Shore (13th) and a few more White Wagtails were seen, with seven at Cocklemill Burn and one at Ruddons Point. A very obliging flock of 12 Waxwings were seen at Coaltown of Wemyss and another two Ring Ouzels were a good find at Drumcarrow. A female Marsh Harrier came in over the Forth at Kinghorn (14th), with three Golden Plovers N and 114 Meadow Pipits N also noted passing through. A Grasshopper Warbler was heard “reeling” at Boarhills and a Cuckoo was seen at Tayport. Maybe spring was here after all! It didn’t feel like it in the colder weather though. Seen from Elie were three Manx Shearwaters and five Sandwich Terns.

11 Black-tailed Godwits were at Dalgety Bay (15th) and an early Lesser Whitethroat was at Kinghorn, where c300 Common Scoters were noted offshore. A Green Woodpecker was calling at Lathrisk, near Freuchie and another Common Sandpiper had trickled in, this time at Luthrie. A solitary Knot was at Dalgety Bay (16th) and noted at Loch Fitty were one Common Sandpiper, 120 Sand Martins, 10 Willow Warblers, eight Chiffchaffs, two Redpolls, two Jays, 64 Greylag Geese, eight Pink-footed Geese, 21 Canada Geese, 23 Tufted Ducks, four Goldeneye, four Gadwall and c4 Great Crested Grebes. 18 Pale-bellied Brent Geese and one Dark-bellied Brent Goose were in Balgove Bay and c70 Whooper Swans were still present near Freuchie. The White Wagtail flock at Braefoot Plantation had risen to 26 by (17th) and a count at Lower Largo produced 63 Red-throated Divers, 39 Velvet Scoters, 301 Common Scoters and nine Long-tailed Ducks. Seen from Ferry Hills (18th) were two Tree Pipits N and 1250 Pink-feet N, a Barn Owl was seen near Falkland and noted passing Kinghorn (19th) were 28 Black-tailed Godwits flew W, with c750 Common Scoters on the sea. At Knockhill, two Cuckoos were heard calling and a Grasshopper Warbler was heard “reeling”, an Osprey passed over Dunfermline heading NW, with another bird seen at Loch Fitty. A Lesser Whitethroat was heard singing near Stenhouse Reservoir, with c15 White Wagtails also noted on the flooded field there. A drake Pochard was seen at Letham Pools and seen off Fife Ness were one dark phase Arctic Skua S and five Manx Shearwaters N, two Common Sandpipers were at Clatto Reservoir and a Grasshopper Warbler was in the NW corner of St Margarets Marsh, Rosyth (20th). Seen from Kincraig Head were one Tree Pipit, three White Wagtails, 27 Red-throated Divers, one Black throated Diver, one Slavonian Grebe and 635 Common Scoters and off Fife Ness (21st) were two Arctic Terns N, nine Sandwich Terns, one 2nd calendar year Little Gull N, two Manx Shearwaters N, 17 Red-throated Divers, two Black-throated Divers, 58 Barnacle Goose N, three Whimbrels S and 21 Long-tailed Ducks S, also there was a new record day count of Common Scoters (337). Noted from Kinghorn were one Great Northern Diver E, four Red throated Divers W and 800 Common Scoters on the sea, a Whitethroat was at Out Head and seen at Guardbridge were two Slavonian Grebes, four Brent Geese, 22 Pintail, one Little Egret and one Greenshank. Two drake Scaup and one Little Egret were at Tayport and a single White Wagtail was seen at Valleyfield Lagoons.

At Blairhall (22nd), a Garden Warbler was heard, a Whimbrel and two Pintail were at Tayport and seen at Hawkcraig Point were 10 Pintail, one Tufted Duck W, 13 Scaup, 115 Razorbills, 24 Puffins and one Whitethroat. Single Lesser Whitethroats were seen at Ferry Hills and Seafield (23rd) and at Langdyke two Tree Pipits and one Green Woodpecker were seen. Four Waxwings were in trees by the entrance to Ferry Hills (24th), then flew off NW, the Lesser Whitethroat was also still present, c15 Whooper Swans were still in the fields to the N of Freuchie. Seen from Fife Ness were one Arctic Skua N, one Manx Shearwater N, 34 Red-throated Divers N, 18 Sandwich Terns N and two Common Scoters N and there was a good count of 24 Purple Sandpipers at Seafield, nine Long-tailed Ducks, c12 Sandwich Terns and one White Wagtail were seen at Out Head. Noted off Fife Ness (25th) were one Bonxie N, two Manx Shearwaters N, 28 Sandwich Terns N, 4S, nine Red-throated Divers N and three Fulmars N, two Common Sandpipers were seen at Harperleas Reservoir and a Short-eared Owl was seen at Muirhead Farm. A Green Sandpiper was at Morton Lochs NNR (27th), one Arctic Tern, one Wheatear, one White Wagtail, five Bar-tailed Godwits and two Whimbrel were off Fife Ness and at Cameron Reservoir were two Grasshopper Warblers and two Canada Geese. A Sedge Warbler was singing at Boarhills Pond, also four Whimbrel were there. Seen from Coble Shore were eight Pintail, one Little Egret and three Long-tailed Ducks and a scarce Cuckoo was calling at Lockshaw Moss, where a Wheatear was also soon. Seen at Falkland (28th) were one Tree Pipit, three Ravens and one Green Woodpecker and there was a good selection of warblers at Seafield, with one Whitethroat, one Lesser Whitethroat, one Willow Warbler, one Chiffchaff, two Greylags and seen offshore were eight Gannets, 83 Common Scoters and two Sandwich Terns. Two Arctic Skuas were off Kingsbarns Beach, a Bonxie went N past Fife Ness and seen at Guardbridge were a Ruff, 25 Black-tailed Godwits, 11 Long-tailed Ducks, one Slavonian Grebe and three Little Egrets. A Grasshopper Warbler was heard at Seafield, with another heard at Kincardine, four Scaup went past Fife Ness N, a Wheatear was at Dalgety Bay (29th), with two Whimbrel and one Woodcock nearby at Braefoot. A Sedge Warbler was at Stenhouse Reservoir, two more Grasshopper Warblers were at Balgownie Woods and the first Swift of the year was seen at Kilconquhar, where two Sedge Warblers were also seen. Seen off Fife Ness were one Bonxie S, 106 Common Scoters, 96 Sandwich Terns, one Red-throated Diver N, 6S and two Black-throated Divers N and seen off Elie were one Arctic Skua, one Great Northern Diver and six Long-tailed Ducks. The month closed with a Yellow Wagtail (Blue-headed) at Luthrie (30th), two male Ring Ouzels at Anstruther, another Ring Ouzel at Kittock’s Den, two Little Terns and two Grey Plover at Out Head, one Whimbrel and a Common Sandpiper at Seafield, eight Waxwings in Kirkcaldy and three Stonechats, one Wheatear and a Cuckoo in the Lomond Hills.

25 April 2024

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FBC Annual Awards

Winners of the 2023 FBC annual awards were announced at the April 2024 Indoor Meeting: 

Rarest Bird Found in Mainland FifeJared Wilson, Stejneger’s Scoter, Lower Largo, April-May 2023.

Photograph of the YearSteve Buckland, Sparrowhawk,  (see November 2023 album in the website gallery). 

Inaugural Gerry Owen Bird Quiz –  Team ‘Ferryhills’ (Graham Sparshott, Derek Robertson, Mary Williams, Alistair Cairns)

 

2022

Winners of the 2022 FBC annual awards were announced at the March 2023 Indoor Meeting and, for possibly the first time, the recipients of both awards were the same for two years in a row: 

Rarest Bird Found in Mainland FifeJared Wilson, Stejneger’s Stonechat, Crail, October 2022.

Photograph of the YearKeith Simpson, Jay, Morton Lochs (see January 2022 album in the website gallery). 

 

 

March 2024 Sightings

The redhead Smew was still present at Angle Park GP (3rd) and was seen displaying to a Goldeneye, a Green Woodpecker was seen at Kennoway and the drake Smew continued its stay at Cameron Reservoir, with 12 Whooper Swans, one Brambling, one Little Egret, a pair of Scaup, one Stonechat, four Ravens, c10 Crossbills, two Snipe, one Jay and one Redshank also seen there. Four Whooper Swans were seen heading N over St Andrews, two Red-necked Grebes, seven Slavonian Grebes, one Black-necked Grebe, four Long-tailed Ducks and 14 Velvet Scoters were off Leven and a ringtail Hen Harrier and a Short-eared Owl were seen at East Lomond. A sinensis race Cormorant was present at Loch Gelly (4th), with 10 Goosanders, a Red-breasted Merganser, three Shelducks, 10 Tufted Ducks and c8 Pochard also noted. Two Ravens were seen at St Andrews Castle, a Nuthatch was seen in Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy and seen offshore at Lower Largo were three Slavonian Grebes, 15 Velvet Scoters and 60 Common Scoters. A Black-necked Grebe and 410 Common Scoters were off Leven (6th), c116 Golden Plovers were seen near East Lomond and a Great Northern Diver was off Ruddons Point. The long-staying Black Redstart was still gracing Roome Bay with its presence (7th), a pair of Pintail were at Dalgety Bay and c50 Whooper Swans were in fields NE of Freuchie. A Barn Owl was seen near Dumbarnie.

A Chiffchaff was heard in St Andrews (8th), seven Crossbills were around the sawmill in Devilla Forest, a Ring-necked Parakeet was seen in Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, two Little Auks were seen heading E at Kinghorn (9th) and as well as a pair of Scaup, a Little Egret, 11 Whooper Swans and a Greenshank, four Crossbills were seen at Cameron Reservoir. Two Merlins were seen N of Carnbee Reservoir and at Redmyre there was an impressive count of c80 Stock Doves, with five Buzzards, four Ravens and a Crossbill also seen. A Merlin, three Woodcocks and a Snipe were seen at Fairmont, St Andrews, another Barn Owl was seen, this time at Lahill Estate, Upper Largo, a pair of Mallard wouldn’t normally get a mention in the monthly sightings, but this pair have the distinction of being the first avian visitors to the new pool at Kilminning (10th). A Red-necked Grebe, a Slavonian Grebe and eight Great Crested Grebes were off Dalgety Bay, and there were six Whooper Swans, 113 Wigeon, one Goosander, 26 Gadwall and 58 Teal at Craigluscar Reservoirs (11th), there were also 10 Snipe. Two Ravens were seen at Kilminning, two Snow Buntings were at Out Head and seen at Clatto Reservoir (12th) were two Crossbills and 87 Wigeon. Seen at Out Head (14th) was a Little Egret, a Slavonian Grebe and c23 Brent Geese.

An early Sandwich Tern was seen off Fife Ness (15th), with two Pintail N, 15 Red-throated Divers N, 54 Kittiwakes N, one Long-tailed Duck N and five Common Scoters S. Nine Slavonian Grebes, 17 Red-throated Divers, 27 Long-tailed Ducks, 22 Velvet Scoters, 291 Common Scoters 117 Razorbills and one Guillemot were off Lower Largo. Two Great Northern Divers, three Slavonian Grebes, two Great Crested Grebes, 90 Red-breasted Mergansers and 60 Bar-tailed Godwits were seen at Ruddons Point, with six Grey Plovers and three Short-eared Owls seen at nearby Cocklemill Marsh. A Slavonian Grebe, one Woodcock, one Little Egret, four Crossbills, two Chiffchaffs, 30 Whooper Swans and one Raven were all seen at Cameron Reservoir, two Short-eared Owls were still showing well at East Lomond and a Red Kite was seen flying E at Newburgh (16th). Seen at Loch Gelly were a pair of Scaup and 55 Whooper Swans. Six Crossbills were seen at Blairadam Forest (17th), one Black-throated Diver, 10 Red-throated Divers, one Slavonian Grebe, 16 Velvet Scoters, nine Common Scoters, 42 Long-tailed Ducks, 95 Razorbills, three Guillemots and one Purple Sandpiper were seen at Lower Largo, a female Ring-necked Duck, two Chiffchaffs and two Jays were at Moor Loch and a pair of Scaup at Loch Gelly were suspected of being Lesser Scaup. These birds were quite distant and seen in poor conditions, but over the next few days, better conditions allowed for images to be checked and they were found to be Greater Scaup. 17 Pintail, including 12 drakes, and four Bar-tailed Godwits were at Torry Bay, two Nuthatches were seen in Balbirnie Park, Markinch (18th), with another bird heard calling at the Falkland Estate (19th). An Osprey was seen going over East Lomond, where c100 Golden Plovers were also seen. Two Red Kites (together) were seen heading over the A91 near Birnie & Gaddon Lochs LNR, a Sand Martin was seen at Letham Pools and seen from Ruddons Point (20th) were a Red-necked Grebe, four Slavonian Grebes, one Great Crested Grebe, 132 Red-breasted Mergansers, 122 Common Scoters, eight Velvet Scoters and 11 Red-throated Divers. A Snow Bunting and 22 Twite were seen at Kingsbarns.

Three Little Egrets were seen at Morton Lochs NNR (22nd), 18 Whooper Swans, a (presumed) sinensis Cormorant, four Cormorants, two Red-breasted Mergansers and one Great Crested Grebe were seen at Cameron Reservoir and a Red Kite was seen at Lucklaw Hill, Balmullo. The female Ring-necked Duck was still present at Moor Loch (23rd) and another Red Kite was seen near Kincraig Point (24th), not too far away at Dumbarnie Links a sub-adult White-tailed Eagle was also seen. Seen off Seafield were 20 Long-tailed Ducks and 250 Common Scoters and a Barn Owl was seen near Crail (26th). A Great Northern Diver, one Slavonian Grebe, 42 Long tailed Ducks, 47 Velvet Scoters and nine Red-throated Divers were seen from Lower Largo, a pair of Snow Buntings were at Out Head and seen at Cocklemill Marsh were a pair of Pintail, a pair of Shoveler and a Short-eared Owl. 35 Whooper Swans passed north over Winifred Crescent, Kirkcaldy (27th) and nearby at Seafield, 17 Purple Sandpipers and 142 Redshanks were counted. One Swallow and one Sand Martin were seen at Letham Pools, c54 Sand Martins, four Chiffchaffs, two Canada Geese, c50 Tufted Ducks, c8 Goldeneye, six Great Crested Grebes and two Buzzards were all noted at Loch Fitty (28th). A Waxwing was heard singing at Newport-on-Tay, a 2nd calendar year Little Gull passed Fife Ness N (29th) and seen on Kilconquhar Loch were a female Long-tailed Duck and seven Red-breasted Mergansers. Another Red Kite was seen drifting north at Cameron Reservoir, a 2nd calendar year Little Gull was seen on Kilconquhar Loch and a Great Northern Diver and 14 Velvet Scoters (passing E) were seen from Ruddons Point. Two Ospreys were seen around Loch Glow (30th) and counted off Leven were seven Slavonian Grebes, 11 Red-throated Divers, 480 Common Scoters and 20 Velvet Scoters, with 105 Velvet Scoters, 295 Common Scoters, 21 Long-tailed Ducks, four Slavonian Grebes and 14 Red-throated Divers seen not far away at Lower Largo. A Jack Snipe was at Cocklemill Marsh, a Black Redstart was seen just outside Boarhills, with a Jack Snipe also seen near the pond. A Short-eared Owl flew over Out Head, an Osprey and c40 Stock Doves were at Cameron Reservoir and a Tawny Owl was in Balbirnie Park. The long-staying drake Smew was still present at Cameron Reservoir on the last day of the month, but the other long-staying bird, the Black Redstart was last reported on the (13th). Both proved very popular.

Focus On: Birds and the Law

Birds and the Law

The following is a summary of a presentation provided to Fife Bird Club members in March 2024. Refer to the respective acts for full details.

Behaviour around birds and nests

Under Section 1 of the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981, it is an offence to intentionally or recklessly —

  • take, damage, destroy or otherwise interfere with the nest of any wild bird while that nest is in use or being built – Section 1(1)(b)
  • obstruct or prevent any wild bird from using its nest – Section 1(1)(bb)
  • disturb any wild bird included in Schedule 1 (see list of Schedule 1 species below) while it is building a nest or is in, on or near a nest containing eggs or young – Section 1(5)(a)
  • disturb dependent young of a Schedule 1 bird – Section 1(5)(b)
  • disturb any wild bird included in Schedule 1 which leks while it is doing so – Section 1(5A)
  • harass any wild bird included in Schedule 1A – Section 1(5B). 
  • take, damage, destroy or otherwise interfere with when not in use in Schedule A1

Schedule 1A include Golden Eagle, White-tailed Eagle, Red Kite, Hen Harrier         

Possession of avian parts and derivatives

It is an offence to be in possession or control of —

  • any live or dead wild bird or any part of, or anything derived from, such a bird – Section 2(a)
  • an egg of a wild bird or any part of such an egg – Section 2(b)

unless it can be shown that:

  • the bird or egg had not been killed or taken, or had been lawfully killed or taken – Section 3(a); or
  • the bird, egg or other thing in his possession or control had been lawfully sold – Section 3(b)

Interpretations

Wild bird” means any bird of a species which is ordinarily resident in or is a visitor to the United Kingdom or any member State or the European territory of any member State in a wild state but does not include poultry.

Reckless” undefined but consider it as behaving with prior knowledge that one’s actions are likely to cause interference or obstruction to a nest.

 Disturbance” undefined but consider it as an involuntary change in an animal’s behaviour caused by human presence.

 Harasses” undefined but consider it as a series of incidents of disturbance.

Access rights to land

The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 provides everyone with the statutory right to be on or cross land for recreational or educational purposes.  These rights are known as “access rights” – Section 1(1)

Access rights can only be exercised responsibly and without unreasonable interference with anybody else’s rights – Section 2(1)&(2)

The following activities are not considered as acting responsibly:

  • not keeping your animal under proper control
  • driving a motorised vehicle or vessel without permission
  • accessing a golf course – Section 9

 Access rights are not exercisable on land which contains:

  • a building or other structure or works, plant or fixed machinery, or a curtilage or enclosure containing any of these
  • a caravan, tent or other place affording a person privacy or shelter
  • the curtilage of a building
  • school grounds
  • private house and garden so that the occupiers have reasonable privacy without unreasonable disturbance – Section 6

Schedule 1 Bird Species:

  • Avocet
  • Bee-eater
  • Bittern
  • Bittern, Little
  • Bluethroat
  • Brambling
  • Bunting, Cirl
  • Bunting, Lapland
  • Bunting, Snow
  • Buzzard, Honey
  • Capercaillie
  • Chough
  • Corncrake
  • Crake, Spotted
  • Crossbills (all species)
  • Curlew, Stone
  • Divers (all species)
  • Dotterel
  • Duck, Long-tailed
  • Eagle, Golden
  • Eagle, White-tailed
  • Falcon, Gyr
  • Fieldfare
  • Firecrest
  • Garganey
  • Godwit, Black-tailed
  • Goshawk
  • Grebe, Black-necked
  • Grebe, Slavonian
  • Greenshank
  • Gull, Little
  • Gull, Mediterranean
  • Harriers (all species)
  • Heron, Purple
  • Hobby
  • Hoopoe
  • Kingfisher
  • Kite, Red
  • Merlin
  • Oriole, Golden
  • Osprey
  • Owl, Barn
  • Owl, Snowy
  • Peregrine
  • Petrel, Leach’s
  • Phalarope, Red-necked
  • Plover, Kentish
  • Plover, Little Ringed
  • Quail, Common
  • Redstart, Black
  • Redwing
  • Rosefinch, Scarlet
  • Ruff
  • Sandpiper, Green
  • Sandpiper, Purple
  • Sandpiper, Wood
  • Scaup
  • Scoter, Common
  • Scoter, Velvet
  • Serin
  • Shorelark
  • Shrike, Red-backed
  • Spoonbill
  • Stilt, Black-winged
  • Stint, Temminck’s
  • Swan, Bewick’s
  • Swan, Whooper
  • Tern, Black
  • Tern, Little
  • Tern, Roseate
  • Tit, Bearded
  • Tit, Crested
  • Treecreeper, Short-toed
  • Warbler, Cetti’s
  • Warbler, Dartford
  • Warbler, Marsh
  • Warbler, Savi’s
  • Whimbrel
  • Woodlark
  • Wryneck

April 2024

February 2024 Sightings

A Greenland White-fronted Goose, along with five Barnacle Geese nearby, were all near Pitlessie (1st), with a redhead Smew popping up at Angle Park GP also. A female Marsh Harrier, a Merlin and two Ravens were seen at Newburgh and continuing the good run of Crossbill sightings were 11 at Redmyre, a good selection of grebe species were seen off Leven, with single Black-necked, Red-necked and Great Crested Grebe and five Slavonian Grebes. A Kingfisher was a scarce visitor to an under-watched area of Dunfermline (2nd), the drake Smew was still showing well at Cameron Reservoir alongside a drake Scaup and 11 Whooper Swans, with 21 Crossbills seen in the area too. Two Hen Harriers were seen at Loch Fitty (3rd), with it being a while since there were multiple sightings of these fabulous birds, while two Waxwings flew over Haugh Park in Cupar. The long-staying Black Redstart at Roome Bay, Crail, continued to entertain, five Snow Buntings were still on Kinshaldy Beach and a single Red-necked Grebe was seen off Leven. A Barnacle Goose was with Pink-feet near Otterston Loch (4th) and noted alongside the Red-necked Grebe off Leven were a Slavonian Grebe and two Black-throated Divers. Notable sightings at Loch Fitty were a Little Egret, six Whooper Swans, 50 Canada Geese and two Jays, single Scaup were seen at both Cameron Reservoir and Kinghorn Loch and at Pitreavie GC, Dunfermline there was a sizable count of c70 Siskins. Eight Greenshanks and a Dipper were noted at Newmills Bay (6th) and picked out from a good count of 45 Cormorants at Loch Fitty (7th) were at least two of the sinensis race. Also seen at that site were a Crossbill, 102 Wigeon and 36 Canada Geese. A female Goshawk was seen over the North Haugh, St Andrews, three Waxwings were in Dunfermline and not far away two Hen Harriers were seen well at Knockhill.

Interesting birds continued to be seen in the west of the county with a Jack Snipe, 23 Snipe and a Mediterranean Gull all seen at St Margarets Marsh, Rosyth (8th), seen from Kinghorn (9th) were two Great Northern Divers which flew E, 12 Velvet Scoters E, 60 Kittiwakes and c300 Razorbills and a 1st-winter Little Gull was in a mixed gull and wader flock at West Sands, St Andrews. Seen from Fife Ness (10th) were four 2nd calendar year Little Gulls N, three Great Northern Divers, 91 Long-tailed Ducks- a site record count and also 35 Gannets. A Black Guillemot flew W past Burntisland, where single Razorbill and Red-throated Divers were seen and also seen off Rossend Point, Burntisland was a Red-necked Grebe. Another count of 11 Crossbills came from Redmyre, where three Ravens and 11 Stock Doves were also noted and seen from Kinghorn were a Slavonian Grebe, 40 Long-tailed Ducks, 45 Red-breasted Mergansers, three Red-throated Divers, two Guillemots, 12 Razorbills, 18 Kittiwakes and 20 Fulmars. Seen in the Cameron Reservoir area were a male Merlin, a Brambling and 16 Crossbills while both a Tawny Owl and a Water Rail were heard calling and of course the drake Smew was still showing really well. A Black-necked Grebe, a Red-necked Grebe, 300 Common Scoters and 200 Velvet Scoters were seen off Leven (11th) and amongst a finch flock at Kinshaldy, which included 24 Linnets and two Twite, were six Snow Buntings, with a single Greenshank on the lagoon and at least five Long-tailed Ducks seen on the newly formed pools in the dunes. At least one Waxwing was seen in Kirkcaldy and seen drifting past Ruddons Point was an adult White billed Diver, with a Red-necked Grebe and a Purple Sandpiper also noted at the Point. Nearby on Cocklemill Marsh were a Short-eared Owl, a Little Egret and four Jack Snipe. A Great Northern Diver and a Little Egret were at Tayport, whilst off Kinghorn were a Red-necked Grebe, three Red-throated Divers and 10 Long-tailed Ducks. Noted off Dysart were one Slavonian Grebe, four Red-throated Divers, two Mediterranean Gulls, five Purple Sandpipers, 28 Turnstones, three Velvet Scoters and one Common Scoter. Seen passing Fife Ness were two Black-throated Divers N, 48 Red-throated Divers N, 4S, with a further 19 on the sea. One Puffin was also on the sea and six Little Gulls and four Long-tailed Ducks passed N. A Bearded Tit was heard once more at St Margarets Marsh, Rosyth, two adult Mediterranean Gulls were on the beach at Dysart (12th), with another on the sea, a drake Surf Scoter was seen amongst Velvet Scoters at Tentsmuir Point NNR and Skelpie Farm was added to the list of locations that have hosted a Barn Owl this year, with another seen at Falkland. A Little Egret, a Long-tailed Duck and 12 Crossbills were seen at Tentsmuir (13th) and a Little Egret was a scarce visitor to Cameron Reservoir. Seen off East Wemyss were one Great Northern Diver, 41 Common Scoters, 20 Velvet Scoters and one Long-tailed Duck, back west again and a Nuthatch was seen in Pittencrieff Park, Dunfermline and there were counts of 25 Purple Sandpipers and c20 Scaup off St Andrews (14th).

A Water Rail and two Canada Geese were seen at Townhill Loch, Dunfermline (15th), the Greenland White-fronted Goose was still being seen around Pitlessie and a single Hen Harrier was seen at Knockhill. A Long-tailed Duck had taken up residence in Anstruther Harbour (16th) and 22 Whooper Swans were seen just N of Star of Markinch, with six also seen at Clatto Reservoir. Two Nuthatches were seen in Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, a Barn Owl was seen near Culross and a Merlin was seen near Pittenweem (17th). A Slavonian Grebe was seen off Dalgety Bay and the count at Largo Bay was one Black-throated Diver, six Red-throated Divers, eight Slavonian Grebes, 60 Razorbills, 18 Long-tailed Ducks, 123 Common Scoters, 19 Velvet Scoters, 18 Purple Sandpipers and 12 Twite E. A Great Northern Diver was at Burntisland, two White-fronted Geese and a Barnacle Goose were reported from Pitlessie and seen at Kinshaldy were a Snow Bunting, one Little Egret and 15 Crossbills. Three Little Gulls were seen loitering off Fife Ness and four Common Scoters also passed S. A Black-necked Grebe, three Slavonian Grebes and one Great Crested Grebe were seen from Leven (18th), the Waxwing count at Dunfermline (19th) jumped to five and in a Cairneyhill garden, a flock of 13 Bullfinches was seen. Noted at Loch Fitty were 39 Canada Geese, 54 Cormorants, one Pochard, one Kingfisher, one Jay and eight Crossbills and seen on East Lomond were two Short-eared Owls. Two Little Egrets were seen on Cocklemill Marsh.

c10 Waxwings were seen on a hedge near Balgove, St Andrews (22nd), a Snow Bunting was on West Sands, St Andrews and the count of Whooper Swans near Freuchie (23rd) was 40. There was an excellent count of c100 Pochard at Loch Gelly (24th), four Red-throated Divers passed Fife Ness and a Greenshank was on the Stinky Pool. A Black-necked Grebe, four Red necked Grebes, four Slavonian Grebes, c500 Common Scoters and 15 Red-throated Divers were counted at Leven and counted at Ruddons Point were two Short-eared Owls, two Red throated Divers and one Little Egret. There were still 53 Pochard at Loch Gelly (25th), still an excellent count in modern times, a Great Northern Diver and an adult Little Gull were seen from Kinghorn and seen at St Margarets Marsh, Rosyth, was a Little Egret. A Green Woodpecker was heard calling on the Falkland Estate (26th) and at Tayport a Lapland Bunting, a Little Egret and 14 Whooper Swans were noted, with the Lapland Bunting being a particularly good find, given the downturn in wintering birds in Fife these days. A Little Egret was seen at Easter Kilwhiss and on East Lomond the Short-eared Owl count had doubled to four, a female Marsh Harrier and two Ravens were seen at Newburgh (27th) and at St Margarets Marsh, Rosyth, a Water Pipit and one Jack Snipe were seen well. six Crossbills were seen at Lochmill, Newburgh (28th) and at St Margarets Marsh, Rosyth, three Jack Snipe, one Peregrine and one Bearded Tit were seen. As well as three Short-eared Owls at East Lomond, six Crossbills were also seen and slightly west of Cocklemill Burn, five Snow Buntings were seen on the beach and the redhead Smew at Angle Park GP, the drake Smew at Cameron Reservoir and the Black Redstart at Roome Bay, Crail, all continued their long stays in the Kingdom.

January 2024 Sightings

2024 started relatively mild, weather-wise and the 1st saw quite a few birds being reported. A Little Auk was close inshore at Fife Ness, also one Black Guillemot S and four Little Gulls passing, c30 Twite were on the shore at Carrick Villa, Lower Largo, the 1st winter drake Scaup was still present at Kinghorn Loch and a Kingfisher at St Margaret’s Marsh, Rosyth, was an unusual visitor there. The Black Redstart was still present at Roome Bay, Crail, 22 Brent Geese, one Kingfisher and two Little Egrets were seen at the Eden Estuary LNR and two Slavonian Grebes were off Out Head. 20 Whooper Swans and two Goosanders were at Craigluscar, two Crossbills were seen near Knockhill and the first of a few Barn Owls seen in the early part of January, was seen at the Parbroath Crossroads. Seen from Fife Ness (2nd) were a Black Guillemot on the sea, 50 Common Scoters S, three Gannets N and three Red-throated Divers S, 102 Twite and a female Merlin were at Balcomie Cottages and seen from Kinghorn were two Great Northern Divers, two Red-necked Grebes, nine Red-throated Divers, 126 Long-tailed Ducks, one Slavonian Grebe and an adult Little Gull. A Merlin was on the track at Cameron Reservoir, where the pair of Scaup and the Slavonian Grebe were still present, a solitary Snow Bunting was at Out Head and seen at Burntisland were 12 Great Crested Grebes, 21 Kittiwakes, one Long-tailed Duck and 26 Bar-tailed Godwits. 11 Waxwings were seen in Balmullo (3rd) and the large flock of Bramblings (c130) were still at Guardbridge and noted passing Fife Ness were a Great Skua N and three Little Gulls (two adults and one 2nd calendar year). 10 Crossbills were seen at Clatto Reservoir and off Dalgety Bay was a Slavonian Grebe. The 11 Waxwings were still at Balmullo (4th), a Little Egret was seen from the Coastal Path at Kilrenny Mill, the Slavonian Grebe, a drake Pintail and five Crossbills were seen at Cameron Reservoir, the 26 Brent Geese at Coble Shore included a Dark-bellied Brent Goose, two Greenshanks were also present. Seen from Dalgety Bay were two Great Northern Divers and one Long-tailed Duck and counted at Bowhouse Farm, St Monans (5th) were 30 Corn Buntings and six Grey Partridges, c800 Pink-feet were in fields to the NW of Anstruther and seen around the Newmills Bay area were one Bar-tailed Godwit, four Greenshanks, one Kingfisher, c40 Siskins and three Snipe. Five Red-throated Divers, a Velvet Scoter and a Long-tailed Duck were in Dysart Harbour, a Great Northern Diver, one Little Egret, 122 Velvet Scoters and 50 Common Scoters were at Ruddons Point and seen from Lower Largo were three Great Northern Divers. A drake Smew, the Slavonian Grebe, a Long-tailed Duck, two Scaup and 12 Crossbills were at Cameron Reservoir, three Red-breasted Mergansers and nine Goosanders were on Loch Gelly and a female Marsh Harrier was seen at Newburgh (6th). 13 Whooper Swans and eight Snipe were counted at Letham Pools, and nine Ravens were seen in a field at the Bow of Fife, 160 Golden Plovers were seen on East Lomond in the Lomond Hills and seen at Coble Shore were six Pale-bellied Brent Geese, seven Greenshanks and three Slavonian Grebes. A good count of Whooper Swans, 42, was made at Bow of Fife, where c1000 Pink-footed Geese were also seen and seen from the Golf Museum Car Park, St Andrews were 32 Scaup, 144 Long-tailed Ducks, 2500 Common Scoters and 50 Velvet Scoters. Also noted in St Andrews were two adult Little Gulls SE over Bogward Road, very unusual. Four Snow Buntings were seen at Kinshaldy (7th), a male Merlin, 30 Whooper Swans and c5 Ravens were seen at Letham Pools, three Slavonian Grebes, 94 Black-tailed Godwits and a Peregrine were seen at the Eden Estuary LNR, a Little Egret was still present at Cocklemill Marsh and by the end of the first week the Black Redstart was still showing well at Roome Bay, Crail. A Black necked Grebe was also a good find off Leven.

A drake Smew was reported at Guardbridge (8th), two Bearded Tits, two Snipe, c6 Reed Buntings, one Sparrowhawk and 80 Pink-footed Geese were seen at St Margaret’s Marsh, Rosyth and there was a good count of 24 Whooper Swans at Star Moss, which included six juveniles. Five Whooper Swans were also seen passing over Bow of Fife S and these included one juvenile, also noted were seven Ravens N. Continuing the upturn in Barn Owl sightings was one near Tayport and seen at St Margaret’s Marsh, Rosyth (9th) were one adult Mediterranean Gull and the very unusual sight of at least 40 Blue Tits in a single bush! The next day at St Margaret’s Marsh, Rosyth a Bearded Tit was seen briefly and heard, the drake Smew, one Snipe and 12 Crossbills were all seen at Cameron Reservoir. Heard on the Rankeilour Estate (11th) were a vocal Chiffchaff plus at least two pairs of Nuthatches, a Little Egret was still to be seen along the Coastal Path at Cellardyke and at Donibristle, two Whooper Swans were amongst the eight Mute Swans there. Seen from Fife Ness (13th) were four 2nd calendar year Little Gulls, a further three Little Gulls, 35 Red-throated Divers, 17 Purple Sandpipers and one Black Guillemot S, an adult male Hen Harrier was seen between Rathillet and Kilmany and at Lower Largo one Red-necked Grebe and eight Purple Sandpipers were present. An adult White-tailed Eagle was on the north bank of Eden Estuary LNR, c90 Twite were at Coble Shore and counted at Tentsmuir Point NNR were c3500 Eiders, a redhead Smew and a pair of Long-tailed Ducks. A Little Egret passed Boarhills SE, with 20 Twite and four Greenshanks also noted there, off Fife Ness (14th) were seven 2nd calendar year Little Gulls lingering offshore. Another Barn Owl was seen near Auchtermuchty and alongside the 18 Whooper Swans at Craigluscar were 21 Gadwall, three Goosanders and 101 Wigeon. Not far away at Lochhead Landfill Site, c800 Pink-footed Geese were present. Three Scaup and seven Goosanders were at Loch Gelly, 40 Twite were around Boghall Farm, Kingsbarns and a Jack Snipe was seen at St Margaret’s Marsh, Rosyth. Counted at Torry as part of the Winter Gull Survey were c700 Common Gulls, with 16 Pintail and two Greenshanks also noted. Both the Black Redstart at Crail and the drake Smew and Crossbill flocks at Cameron Reservoir were still showing well up to the end of that week.

A mixed flock of c500 Redwings and Fieldfares were seen at Cellardyke (15th), a Barn Owl was seen at Falkland and on Kinshaldy Beach (16th) were five Snow Buntings, a flock of 25 Waxwings were seen in Guardbridge and as part of the Winter Gull Survey, two Mediterranean Gulls, 750 Black-headed Gulls, 300 Common Gulls, 700 Herring Gulls, 30 Kittiwakes and three Great Black-backed Gulls were counted at Burntisland. A Nuthatch was an unusual visitor to Newburgh and seen at Valleyfield Lagoons (17th) were a Woodcock, a Water Rail and a Sparrowhawk, with two Woodcocks also seen at Cullaloe LNR. A ringtail Hen Harrier was seen flying over the reeds at the west end of Loch Fitty, the 200 Skylarks seen in the stubble at Letham Pools were probably part of a cold weather movement, another Barn Owl was seen between Auchtermuchty and Strathmiglo and the Bearded Tits were seen briefly again at St Margaret’s Marsh, Rosyth (18th). Seen off Dalgety Bay were a Great Northern Diver, three Whooper Swans and one Shoveler, 11 Golden Plovers were noted at Kilminning and off Fife Ness (19th), were seven 2nd calendar year Little Gulls N and a Black Guillemot on the sea. A Long-tailed Duck was in Anstruther Harbour and the count of Whooper Swans at Star Moss had risen to 46, which included six juveniles. A 2nd winter Glaucous Gull was a good find in a mixed gull flock at Tayport and seen from Fife Ness (20th) were three Little Auks (2S, 1N) and a Great Northern Diver N. A single Greenshank was at Dalgety Bay, with three seen at Coble Shore, where 10 Brent Geese and one Slavonian Grebe were also noted. A Pacific Diver was reported from Burntisland Docks and counted from Fife Ness (21st) were two Black Guillemots S, five Little Gulls (3 adults and two 2nd calendar year), three Great Northern Divers, 69 Red throated Divers, 62 Long-tailed Ducks, 22 Common Scoters, one Velvet Scoter and six Gannets. A total of 56 Crossbills were seen around Pitmedden Forest with two Woodcocks and a Raven also seen. A Black-throated Diver, two Purple Sandpipers and 96 Golden Plovers were seen at Kingsbarns and a ringtail Hen Harrier was seen at Cameron Reservoir, with the drake Smew still present there and the Black Redstart at Crail was also still present up to the end of that week.

Eight Barnacle Geese were among c1000 Pink-feet in a field at the west end of Clatto Reservoir (22nd), the large flock of c200 Bramblings were seen again at Guardbridge (23rd), a White-tailed Eagle went N over Leuchars Camp, a drake Pintail was an early visitor to Letham Pools and two Waxwings were welcome visitors to a Cellardyke garden (24th). A Barn Owl was seen at Balgownie, a pair of Pochard and a drake Scaup were at Cameron Reservoir (25th), seen at Pittencrieff Park, Dunfermline were two Nuthatches, with another also heard, the flock of c20 Waxwings were still at Leuchars (26th) and seen off Fife Ness (27th) were a Black Guillemot S, two Little Gulls offshore and one Great Northern Diver S. A White-tailed Eagle and a Slavonian Grebe were seen at Out Head and a smaller flock of Bramblings, c60, were still at Guardbridge. The juvenile Long-tailed Duck was still present at Kilconquhar Loch and six Barnacle Geese were in with 1000 Pink-feet at Balbuthie. Seen on Kinshaldy Beach (28th) were five Snow Buntings and two Little Egrets, at least five Waxwings were still at Leuchars and alongside the group of six Pale-bellied Brent Geese at Balgove Bay was a single Dark-bellied Brent Goose. The Brambling flock numbered c100 at Guardbridge, the redhead Smew was still present at Angle Park GP and seen at Coble Shore (29th) were 10 Brent Geese, 11 Pintail, three Little Egrets and two Greenshanks. Two Waxwings flew over the park in Guardbridge and heard on the Falkland Estate (30th) were two Tawny Owls duetting, a ringtail Hen Harrier was seen heading W at Kilmany, a Black-necked Grebe, one Red-necked Grebe and c2 Slavonian Grebes were seen off Leven and off Lower Largo were two Red-necked Grebes and seven Slavonian Grebes. Two Mediterranean Gulls, three drake Velvet Scoters and two Long-tailed Ducks were at Dysart and a there was a good count of 56 Long-tailed Ducks made off Kirkcaldy, three Crossbills were seen in Devilla Forest and a Barn Owl was seen near Dunshalt. Seen from Ravenscraig Castle, Kirkcaldy (31st) were a Black-necked Grebe, two Red-throated Divers, two Black-throated Divers, 20 Long-tailed Ducks and one Velvet Scoter, a ringtail Hen Harrier was seen near Cowdenbeath and c60 Whoopers Swans were seen near Freuchie. The Black Redstart at Roome Bay, Crail and the drake Smew at Cameron Reservoir were both seen up to the (30th) of the month.

December 2023 Sightings

The first few days in December brought a few days of snow, but good birds were still seen. A Black Guillemot, one Red-necked Grebe and one Great Northern Diver were seen from Ruddons Point (1st) and nearby at Cocklemill Marsh 100 Twite and a Little Egret were seen, a Long-tailed Duck was an unusual visitor to Kilconquhar Loch with a Chiffchaff also seen there. At Newburgh a female Marsh Harrier was seen and at Cameron Reservoir four Woodcocks flew out of the woods at dusk while a Long-eared Owl was watched hunting along the track towards the Kirk. A Barn Owl was seen at the south of Glenrothes and a few Waxwings were still present in the first week of December with c10 noted at Rumblingwell, Dunfermline (2nd). At Balbuthie Farm, Elie 800 Pink-footed Geese, and c50 Golden Plovers were seen, two Jack Snipe were seen at the River Eden, Cupar, two Black-necked Grebes and two Great Northern Divers were seen off Leven Beach and c25 Crossbills were seen in Heatherhall Woods, Ladybank (3rd). The Waxwing count at Rumblingwell, Dunfermline rose to c20, a Merlin was watched hunting at St Andrews, a Brambling was in Lumbo Den, St Andrews and three Ravens passed over Spinkie Den, St Andrews. 21 Little Gulls passed Fife Ness N (4th), a Dark-bellied Brent Goose was amongst the Pale-bellied Brent Geese at Kincaple, nine Snow Buntings were at Out Head and the Waxwing count had crept up to 33 at Rumblingwell, Dunfermline (5th), with a further 14 seen at Townhill Loch. The Black Redstart was still showing well at Roome Bay, Crail, an adult Mediterranean Gull was seen feeding in stubble W of Loch Gelly (6th), also two Jack Snipe were flushed from rough grassland and 40 Tree Sparrows were also seen. Four Waxwings passed over Rumblingwell, Dunfermline, a Raven passed over Balbirnie, Markinch (7th) and a Common Chiffchaff was at The Spinney, Dalgety Bay.

A White-tailed Eagle was seen at Kilmany (8th). A female Scaup, eight Crossbills and 133 Goldeneye were noted at Cameron Reservoir (9th) and at St Margaret’s Marsh, Rosyth a Bearded Tit was heard calling from the NW side. Seen from Fife Ness were two Little Auks S, one Little Gull S, 205 Common Scoters S and five Long-tailed Ducks S and noted passing there (10th) were one Little Auk N, two Little Gulls N, 412 Common Scoters, 21 Long-tailed Ducks S, one Black-throated Diver N and 15 Red-throated Divers S. Seen again at Roome Bay, Crail was the Black Redstart, at Kilconquhar Loch, an immature drake Scaup, one Water Rail, one Kingfisher were noted as well as a couple of unusual visitors, with a Slavonian Grebe and Long-tailed Duck seen, while 137 Goldeneye were also counted. Five Waxwings were reported from Wormit and seen from Kinghorn (11th) was a Grey Phalarope, two Red-necked Grebes, two Slavonian Grebes and 61 Long-tailed Ducks. A single adult Little Gull was in a large gull flock off St Andrews Pier (12th), three Goosanders, nine Pochard, 128 Teal and an adult Mediterranean Gull were at Loch Gelly (13th) and a count at Valleyfield Lagoons included 29 Snipe, 25 Ringed Plovers and a Short-Eared Owl. Three juveniles were amongst the 19 Whooper Swans at Craigluscar and at Cellardyke, eight Waxwings were seen, whilst a Little Egret was seen nearby at St Monans. Seven Snow Buntings were on the beach at Kinshaldy, a 1st winter drake Scaup was in the SE corner of Kinghorn Loch, a Barn Owl was seen at Freuchie.

The Black Redstart was still to be seen in Roome Bay, Crail (15th). A drake Smew, c20 Crossbills, one Kingfisher, two Jays and a ringtail Hen Harrier were all seen at Cameron Reservoir, c80 Bramblings were seen in Guardbridge and at Cameron Reservoir (16th) as well as the drake Smew, a female Scaup, a Slavonian Grebe, one Merlin, nine Crossbills and five Pintail were seen. One Little Auk was seen passing Fife Ness, two Greenshanks, two Little Egrets and 22 Twite were at Coble Shore and an adult female Marsh Harrier was seen at Newburgh, whilst at Rossie Bog, a Short-eared Owl was seen well. Two Little Auks passed Fife Ness S (17th), a Mealy Redpoll was seen amongst a flock of c40 Lesser Redpolls in St Andrews and also seen to the south of St Andrews was a hunting ringtail Hen Harrier. The flock of Bramblings in Guardbridge had risen to c100, a Scaup was in the NE corner of Kinghorn Loch (18th) and at Rossie Bog a Short-eared Owl, 14 Whooper Swans and c160 Teal were seen. In the Bow of Fife area two flocks of Whooper Swans totaling 38 were seen, these flocks also included three juveniles. The drake Smew was still present at Cameron Reservoir, a ringtail Hen Harrier was watched hunting at Rossie Bog (19th) and the excellent count of 13 Greenshanks at Torry Bay was the highest count the observer had ever noted at that site. A Merlin, a ringtail Hen Harrier and a female Scaup were seen at Cameron Reservoir, a Merlin was also seen at Parbroath Crossroads and a very unusual inland report of a Great Northern Diver came from Lochore Meadows CP. The three Snipe seen at Strathkinness (20th) was a first in the village for the observer, a Nuthatch was seen in Ravenscraig Park, Kirkcaldy (21st) and a Barn Owl was seen at Letham Pools.

Seen from Fife Ness (22nd) were a 1st calendar year Iceland Gull N, four Black Guillemots S and one Little Auk S. A Barn Owl was seen near Wormit (23rd) and noted passing Fife Ness (24th) were three Little Auks, one Black Guillemot S and one Black-throated Diver N. Seen at Cameron Reservoir were two Scaup and three Crossbills, c400 Pink-footed Geese were in fields near Kinglassie and seen from Fife Ness (26th) were one Little Auk N, six Little Gull S, 203 Common Scoters, one Velvet Scoter, eight Long-tailed Ducks and six Gannets, c2000 Pink-feet were in a winter grass field near Cellardyke and seen at Loch Fitty were 84 Canada Geese, two Whooper Swans, two Goosanders and a Great Crested Grebe. The Black Redstart was still present at Roome Bay, Crail up to (26th). There was a good count of c10 Pintail and a Raven at Torryburn, a Barn Owl was seen near Tayport and a female Marsh Harrier was seen at Newburgh (28th).

Noted passing Fife Ness were one 1st calendar year Little Gull, one Black-throated Diver N, 180 Common Scoters S, two Velvet Scoters S, 19 Long-tailed Ducks S one Goldeneye S, one Shelduck S, five Gannets, 40 Fulmars, 100 Kittiwakes, 60 Razorbills and 20 Guillemots. At the Bow of Fife 69 Whooper Swans including four juveniles were seen in the area, a Slavonian Grebe was on Loch Gelly (29th) and present at Cameron Reservoir were two Scaup, one Long-tailed Duck, one Slavonian Grebe, two Ravens and 16 Crossbills. Seen from the Golf Museum Car Park, St Andrews were c20 Scaup and c100 Long-tailed Ducks, seven Snow Buntings were near the lagoon at Tentsmuir Point NNR and two drake and one female Long-tailed Ducks and a Slavonian Grebe were on the dune slack near the car park at Kinshaldy. Given the relative scarcity of geese around in December, the count of 850 Pink-feet near St Andrews was welcome! Seen from Fife Ness were an adult Little Gull and 26 Long-tailed Ducks S and the Black Redstart was last reported from Roome Bay, Crail. An adult Mediterranean Gull, one Red-necked Grebe, one Great Northern Diver and four ‘Scandinavian Herring Gulls’ were seen from Kinghorn (30th) and close by at Kinghorn Loch, the drake Scaup was still present. c190 Common Scoters, five Long-tailed Ducks and one Red-throated Diver all passed Fife Ness S, a Water Rail and at least three Ravens were seen at Carnbee Reservoir. There was a great count of c3000 Knot, 37 Scaup, three Pintail and two Slavonian Grebes made at Out Head and the last day of the year saw three Little Auks S, seven Little Gulls offshore, 43 Long-tailed Ducks S, 670 Common Scoters S, nine Velvet Scoters S and 26 Red-throated Divers pass Fife Ness. Finally for the year, a flock of 21 Snow Buntings were seen on East Lomond.

Monthly sighting summaries are based on information submitted to the Fife Bird News WhatsApp group. A full list of contributors is published in Scope. Thank you.