South Dublin Branch - Outing Report

Bluethroat - Ballycotton, Cork (photo: Paul & Andrea Kelly)

Rogerstown Estuary & Turvey Parklands - 9th October 2022.

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South Dublin members assemble in the car park at Turvey Parklands. Picture by Gustavo Zoladz.

South Dublin Members, Turvey Parklands, 9th October 2022 (picture: Gustavo Zoladz)

There is always something going on at Rogerstown Nature Reserve in north Dublin. It has a very good mix of habitats that blend from one to the next as you make your way from the car park to the estuary hide along very well maintained paths that pass through farmland, woodland, marshland, grassland and finally the estuary.

The threat of rain forced us to make a change to our normal routine and, wisely, the 20 South Dublin members that gathered for the outing decided to head straight to the hide, making just a few brief stops on the way. We hadn't gone very far when we spotted a Jay flying across a field, but it could not be relocated.

Little Grebe at its breakfast in Turvey Parklands. Picture by Robin Pollard.

Little Grebe , Turvey Parklands, 9th October 2022 (picture: Robin Pollard)

As we continued towards the hide we encountered a few Mute Swans (including three juveniles), Moorhens, Mallards and one somewhat secretive Little Grebe that was feeding among reeds in a newly constructed pond adjacent to the path. Passerines spotted were a few Stonechats, Linnets and the last few Swallows of the season. These kept us so distracted that we nearly missed an overhead Buzzard.

Always a great bird to get on an outing, Peregrine Falcon. Picture by Gustavo Zoladz.

Peregrine Falcon, Rogerstown Estuary, 9th October 2022 (picture: Gustavo Zoladz)

But we didn't see the best bird on the day until we reached the estuary where a Peregrine Falcon was sitting at the opposite bank on a Jackdaw kill. A few more Buzzards and Kestrels were seen soaring and hovering at some distance away opposite the hide. It's not that long ago that Buzzard was a very rare bird in Dublin and elsewhere on the east coast but in the past ten or 15 years numbers and range have increased dramatically and this handsome raptor is becoming a regular sight, especially in open countryside.

Wigeon and Shelduck and single Brent Goose and Teal in the estuary and Curlew hunkered down on the bank. Picture by Robin Pollard.

Wildfowl and waders, Rogerstown Estuary, 9th October 2022 (picture: Robin Pollard)

On the estuary there were a few Brent Geese and good numbers of Wigeon and Shelduck, wading in the shallows were Redshank and a single Grey Plover and along the grassy banks were Curlew, Oystercatcher and Cormorant.

Some More Pictures

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An inquisitive juvenile Mute Swan coming to take a look at us. Picture by Robin Pollard.

Some more pictures taken on the day by Gustavo Zoladz and Robin Pollard.
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A pair of Mallard taking it easy. Picture by Gustavo Zoladz.
A typical scene at Rogerstown with wildfowl and waders feeding, including a single Grey Plover in the middle front. Picture by Robin Pollard.

After about an hour in the hide we began to head back to the car park, but unfortunately we hadn't gone far when the rain started so we called it a day there and then. Despite the rain, a handful of brave souls decided to carry on and take one final look in the woodland... and we finished exactly how we had started, with a Jay, this time more visible and vocal, calling as we passed by.

Gustavo Zoladz

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