A Long-tailed Duck off Irishtown Nature Park was the only addition for Noel Keogh at South Dublin Bay during November but it brings him to a fine 120% at the top of the Coastal Ireland Comparative Minileague where his first place title looks set in stone now for #PWC2016. A fantastic year he's had there with 124 species so far but will he be able to match it in 2017?
The other contestants making up the top five on the comparative table remain in their allocated rankings for another month, increasing their scores slightly here and there. Common Scoter made it on to Richard Donaghey and Derek Polley's Northern Ireland patch year lists at the Bann Estuary (second place) and Bangor West (fourth place) respectively while a dog walk around Killiney Hill at dusk one evening bore fruit for Eleanor Keane with a Long-eared Owl there for her patch, currently in third place.
The Under 25's representative on the west coast, Cathal Forkan, did well by re-finding the Forster's Tern at North Galway Bay, back again for another winter (present here since 2003!).
Forster's Tern near Nimmo's Pier (c) Cathal Forkan (blog)
Little Gull at Larne Lough (c) Neal Warnock
Tacumshin leads the charge on the Coastal Ireland Points Minileague table, ahead in first place by a matter of 85 points! Noel Keogh added a juvenile female Ring-necked Duck, Long-tailed Duck and Water Pipit there during the month bringing him to 163 species and a solid 250 points. A site that just keeps giving!
Noel's South Dublin Bay patch edges just ahead of Tim Murphy at St John's Point by a matter of one point and takes second place for the month. Also patching around South Dublin Bay is Joe Proudfoot who got in on some excellent #patchgold action with a couple of Tree Sparrows at Booterstown Marsh and a Jack Snipe at Merrion Gates.
Neal Warnock enjoyed good fortune at Larne Lough with excellent early winter birding producing a couple of #patchtick Velvet Scoters, two Long-tailed Ducks, Little Gull, Iceland Gull and two Goosander.
In Cork, a Brambling was the highlight of the month for Julian Wyllie at Baltimore as was a Scaup at Clonakilty/Inchydoney for Christopher O'Sullivan.
Iceland Gull at Larne Lough (c) Neal Warnock