Sunday, 29 November 2015

Every Rose must fade

Last week a fellow birder was out and about in Howth looking for Little Auk when he stumbled across a first winter Rose Coloured Starling. These birds are normally found down in Turkey but we get 1 to 2 birds every year. These birds are victims of stormy weather and end up making land fall where every they can. I had never seen a Juvenile bird so I headed out the next day to see if it was still around. Sure enough after a bit of looking I located the bird close to where it was first found. it was feeding on its own. A dog put the bird up and I was able to relocated it on the rocky shore at the base of the east pier. Here it was feeding with a small flock of Common Starling.  I took a few shots and left the bird in peace.

The next few days it was spotted several times in around the same area. So at the end of the week I got a call from a friend that he was going to look for the bird on Sunday and asked if i would come along. I thought why not, it would be interesting to see how it was getting on. We check several different spots but couldn't located the bird. We had the Black Redstart I found several weeks earlier and a few Chiffchaffs but the bird wasn`t to be seeing feeding with the other Starlings. The next thing you know, Brian says there it is, I looked at the bird Brian was pointing at and I had to take a second look. The week in Ireland and the cold cold weather had taken its toll on this poor little bird. My heart sank when it staggered towards us. It was unkept looking, a bit hobo like, this bird was on the brink and there was nothing we could do. I took a few shots as a reference to see if the difference was that bad. The bird wasn`t seen after that day so I presume the cold frosty night on Sunday finished him off.

                    This was the last time I saw the bird, It didn`t look well at all.