Come learn how to identify a rich variety of shorebirds at a birdwatching weekend in Co. Sligo this winter. Bird guide Rob Wheeldon will be running two weekend workshops entitled ‘Waders & Wildfowl’ on the 23rd – 25th of November 2012 and the 25th – 27th January 2013.
Did you know that the 3 bays in Sligo are internationally important for their wintering birds? In particular, large numbers of Brent Geese from Greenland can be seen at Ballysadare Bay and Sligo Harbour, whilst a flock of several thousand Barnacle Geese can be seen using the fields adjoining Drumcliff Bay.
Not only does Sligo have an amazing variety of shore birds, but it is also blessed with some stunning scenery. The views of sand banks, rocky shores, deep channels and mud flats constantly change with the tides ebb and flow and are set against the backdrop of the iconic Benbulben and Knocknarea mountains.
Add hundreds of shorebirds, thousands of Barnacle geese calling overhead as they flock to Inishmurray and a spectacular winter sunset into the mix and you begin to see what it is all about.
Sunshine is not a guarantee of course, but everything else is! Identifying shorebirds can be tricky at the best of times. There are some 42 species that you could reasonably expect to see on a weekend in Sligo, including ducks, geese, swans, divers, gulls and waders. Rob will be on hand to show you the ropes on identification, with binoculars and telescopes for use during the weekend.
The itinerary for the weekend includes an introductory talk on ‘Waterbirds of Northwest Ireland’ on Friday night. Saturday will involve morning and afternoon field trips to Drumcliff Bay, with lunch at Ardtarmon House at midday to warm the extremities.
The Saturday evening talk is entitled ‘Getting to Grips with Gull identification’. Finally, Sunday’s field trips will be to Sligo & Ballysadare bays and will include packed lunches before finishing up at 3pm.
The Wader & Wildfowl Weekend package includes 2 nights B&B at Ardtarmon House, Raghly, Co. Sligo, Saturday and Sunday lunches, and all field trips and talks. Weekend Rates: €140 per person sharing (double/twin); €155 per person (Single room).
A non-residential rate of €70 per person is also available. To book contact firstname.lastname@example.org, 086 400 4526 or get further information online at www.ecoaudit.ie