Birds in October

Last month the Arran Ranger Service reported on the movements of Mar’verick, a White Tailed Eagle that was satellite-tagged as a chick at NTS Mar Lodge Estate Nature Reserve. In a post on Mar Lodge Facebook page the satellite data shows he has travelled all over mainland Scotland in the last year, including a visit to Arran. As the Rangers say, “It’s amazing how much satellite tracking reveals about bird movements.” Apparently one keen birder spotted Mar’verick during his trip to Arran!

Mar Lodge Estate wrote:
It has been a year since ‘Mar’verick, a satellite-tagged white-tailed eagle chick left Mar Lodge. We thought it would be interesting to share his movements over the last year. These show he has travelled far and wide across Scotland visiting Arran, Ullapool, Mallaig and Fife. However he has concentrated his time around the northern Cairngorms. The data has shown us that he has re-visited Mar Lodge (green polygon on map) six times in the last year. Three single day visits and a couple of longer visits since April 2023 when he returned to Mar Lodge for the first time.

White-tailed eagles don’t usually settle down to breed until their 5th year and so we look forward to seeing his movements over the next year.

Mar’verick’s satellite tracking

Thanks to the RSPB for providing the data and map. Featured image shows Mar’verick. Image credit: Mar Lodge Reserve


Arran Birding

Meanwhile there have been lots of first reports in October of winter visitors on Arran, including Waxwing, Fieldfare and Redwing.

Waxwing. On the morning of Tuesday 31 October three Waxwing came into a garden in Newton, Lochranza, along with Fieldfare and Redwing. The observer managed to get this photograph through binoculars. The last Arran report of this irruptive winter visitor was was one in a garden in Cordon in February 2020. For more information on Waxwing on Arran click here and here

Waxwing, Lochranza. October 2023. Image credit: Mark Whitaker

For more about October’s bird sightings please see the Arran Birding website here Please also see the PDF of Arran birds.