15th of April 2014.
Lundy Island.

Species seen 30.
My first trip this year to Lundy Island was made even more special as my fiancĂ©e came along this time and we both enjoyed a  fabulous day that felt like a summers day as the sun shone all day with the temperature in the 70’s. The passage this time from Ilfracombe aboard the MS Oldenburg was calm and breezy, perfect weather to be out at sea.

The sailing normally takes two hours; however as the sea state was calm the journey only took an hour and a half. We managed to get my favourite seat on the ships starboard side which gives an ideal position for sea watching. Birds seen on route were Black Headed Gull, Herring Gull, Great Black Backed Gull, Lesser Black backed Gull, Gannett, Swallow, Razorbill, Guillemot, Shag, Cormorant, plus many too far away to identify. The Manx Shearwaters were gliding with great skill just above the water and were seen to disappear and reappear as they dropped in and out of the wave troughs.

Attempt at a shot of a Manx Shearwater
The Irish Navy we also doing sea testing aboard their brand new fisheries ship the “Samuel Beckett” this very fast ship came out from Appledore at great speed and it was very soon past the Oldenburg and on out into the Atlantic.

Upon reaching Lundy everyone disembarked from the MS Oldenburg we began the steep long road trek up to the higher levels where everyone went their separate ways. My planned route was to take in the southern coastal footpaths along and past the old lighthouse and then on towards halfway wall.

The first birds seen were the numerous Swallows, House Sparrows, Meadow Pipits and Wheatear. Other seen were Blackbird, Wren, Linnet, Pied wagtail, Rock Pipit, Starling, Rock Dove, Goldfinch, Mallard Duck, Robin, Chiffchaff and Jackdaw.
Upon arriving at Jenny’s Cove we scanned the birds on the rock ledges. Kittiwakes, Oystercatcher and Herring Gulls were all that we managed to identify from a reasonably long distance. Here we also caught sight of a single Grey Seal, however it was very distant.

Walking back a few Carrion Crow made an appearance over towards the east side as did a small group of Sika Deer. Other animals observed were the usual sheep, however this time of year many had young lambs, also seen were Lundy ponies and wild goats.

Butterflies of note were Small White and Small Tortoiseshell.
A really great day shared on the sea and Lundy watching Birds and wildlife in superb weather. I look forward to visiting Lundy again on Easter Saturday, this time as a volunteer with a survey team from MARINElife.

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