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Kindrogan Field Centre

Perthshire Scotland

   

31 May - 7 June 2013

Observers: F. Simpson

 

INTRODUCTION


 

Early June saw me heading back to Scotland to work on an undergraduate university field course for a week. The usual location for this is the Field Studies Council's Kindrogan Field Centre near Enochdhu in picturesque Strathardle, Perthshire. The field centre is set in an old Victorian estate with a small area of mixed woodland along the banks of the River Ardle at the foot of Kindrogan Hill, largely cloaked in spruce forestry plantation with smaller areas of larch. Strathardle is dominated by pastoral farmland in the glen and moorland on the higher ground. Further to the west lies Glen Brerachan holding some nice heather moorland and small patches of open birch woodland. This trip report details the birds found mainly around the field centre. Glen Brerachan looks like it would be worth some exploration with raptors, grouse and upland birds a probability for those with more time. New additions to my cumulative species list for Kindrogan since coming in early June since 2003 were Green Woodpecker and Goshawk.

 

 

Kindrogan Trip Reports:  2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005

 View of Strathardle from Creag na Cuinneige  Fraser Simpson

The north-west end of Strathardle, looking south-east from Creag na Cuinneige. Straloch Loch is in the foreground, Kindrogan Hill on the right (hover over image for further locations)

    Excerpt from the dawn chorus at Kindrogan 5 June 2013

    Listen to an excerpt from the dawn chorus recorded at the field centre on 5 June 2013 between 03:05 and 04:25. Featuring Robin, Great Tit, Wren, Blackbird, Song Thrush, Goldcrest, and Treecreeper.

     

 

 

 

Sketch map of the area

 

 

Kindrogan Field Centre & environs, Strathardle, Perthshire                                        Approx. sunrise 0423h, sunset 2210h


 

Mute Swan  Cygnus olor


Pair, Loch Curran (viewed distantly from Kindrogan Hill), 2/6.

Little Grebe  Tachybaptus ruficollis


2 prs, Straloch Loch, 1/6.

Pr, on small lochan near Tullochcurran on the Cateran Trail, 5/6.

Grey Heron  Ardea cinerea


Ad, curling pond, 1/6.

Juv, near Straloch Loch, 1/6.

Ad, River Ardle, Kirkmichael, 6/6.

Ad + juv, in field south-east of Straloch, 7/6.

Greylag Goose  Anser anser


1, east end of Glen Brerachan, 3/6.

Canada Goose  Branta canadensis


7, Straloch Loch on 1/6.

Wigeon  Anas penelope


5mm/1f, Straloch Loch on 1/6.

Mallard  Anas platyrhynchos


Male, over Straloch Loch on 1/6.

Pr, in peaty pool at 397m near Loch a'Choire, 3/6.

Female + b/2, on small lochan near Tullochcurran on the Cateran Trail, 5/6.

Pair, River Ardle near East Lodge, 7/6.

Tufted Duck  Aythya fuligula


Pr, Straloch Loch on 1/6.

Goosander  Mergus merganser


1, on River Ardle, near confluence of Brerachan Water & Allt Fearnach, 2/6.

Pr, west over field centre at 22:29 on 3/6.

Red Grouse  Lagopus scotica


Several calling around Loch a'Choire, Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Sparrowhawk  Accipiter nisus


No birds seen.

Goshawk  Accipiter gentilis


Female, mobbed by eight Carrion Crows on forest edge in the clear-fell, just east of the cemetery in Kindrogan Hill, 4/6.

Buzzard  Buteo buteo


Regular over the field centre.

2 territories between Straloch and Enochdhu.

1, over Moulin Burn, 3/6.

1, Cateran Trail between Enochdhu and Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Kestrel  Falco tinninculus


1, flying around crags, Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Pheasant  Phasianus colchicus


A few noted in Strathardle.

Moorhen  Gallinula chloropus


Ad + 2 juvs, Wellwood House, Pitlochry, 3/6.

Oystercatcher  Haematopus ostralegus


Several pairs in Glen Brerachan/west end of Strathardle, including incubating bird.

7, Straloch Loch on 1/6.

Pr, Straloch PS on 1/6.

1, over Pitlochry, 3/6.

Woodcock  Scolopax rusticola


Roding over field centre at 03:45 on 3/6.

Roding over field centre at 22:01 on 3/6.

Roding over field centre at 03:29 on 5/6.

Curlew  Numenius arquata


Pr, displaying north of Tulloch on 1/6.

Heard displaying from Catern Trail, north of Kirkmichael, 6/6.

Common Sandpiper  Actitis hypoleucos


Pr + b/2, West Lodge bridge, Brerachan Water, all week.

2 River Ardle between the field centre and Kindrogan Bridge on 1/6.

1, Brerachan Water, West Lodge bridge on 1/6.

1, Loch a'Choire, Ben Vrackie, 3/6

Pr, Glen Brerachan, 7/6.

1, heard at Pitlochry train statoin, 7/6.

Black-headed Gull  Larus ridibundus


Regularly flying over Strathardle.

Common Gull  Larus canus


Birds regularly flying over Strathardle.

67, in fields above Moulin, 3/6.

Feral Pigeon  Columba livia


Noted at Enochdhu, Kirkmichael and Pitlochry.

Wood Pigeon  Columba palumbus


Fairly common.

Singing from 04:11 on 3/6; 04:04 on 5/6.

Maximum of 15 feeding in a field south-east of Straloch, 1/6.

Collared Dove  Sreptopelia decaocto


Pairs noted in Pitlochry and Kirkmichael.

Cuckoo  Cuculus canorus


Singing from 03:52 on 3/6; 03:16 on 5/6.

2 singing mm, around the field centre, all week.

1 singing m, on south side of Kindrogan Hill trig point, 2/6.

1 singing m, Moulin Burn, 3/6.

1 singing m, Cateran Trail near Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Tawny Owl  Strix aluco


Female calling from 22:25, near the car park on 31/5.

Pair calling at 03:17 on 3/6.

Swift  Apus apus


2, over Moulin, 3/6.

4, over River Ardle, Kirkmichael, 5/6.

6, over River Ardle, Kirkmichael, 6/6.

4, over Pitlochry train station, 7/6.

Green Woodpecker  Picus viridis


1, yaffling all day, ranging between Kindrogan Field Centre, the cemetery and the curling pond on 1/6.

Singing/yaffling from 04:37 on 3/6; 04:50 on 5/6.

Great Spotted Woodpecker  Dendrocopus major


Fairly common.

Regular at feeders and on the lawns around the field centre.

Skylark  Alauda arvensis


Only seen from the bus trip over Moulin Moor.

Sand Martin  Riparia riparia


Probably nesting somewhere along the Brerachan Water.

7, West Lodge bridge, Brerachan Water, 4/6.

Swallow  Hirundo rustica


Fairly common in Strathardle.

6 AON, The Coppock Building on 1/6.

14, along A924 between Straloch-Enochdhu, 1/6.

House Martin  Delichon urbicum


Noted around human habitation including Straloch, Enochdhu, Kirkmichael and Pitlochry.

1 AON, on rear of Kindrogan House.

8, Dalreoch, 5/6.

12, River Ardle, Kirkmichael, 6/6.

Tree Pipit  Anthus trivialis


More common than usual this year.

1 displaying m, West Lodge entrance on 1/6.

1 displaying m, Straloch Loch on 1/6.

2 singing mm, Moulin Burn, 3/6.

7+ singing mm, clear-fell around cemetery on north-east side of Kindrogan Hill (NO 055625), 4/6.

2 singing mm in birch wood (NO 030637) at east end of Glen Brerachan, 4/6.

2 singing mm, Cateran Trail from Enochdhu to Kirkmichael, 4/6.

5 singing mm, between field centre and Balnald, 6/6.

4+ singing mm, in clear-fell on north-west side of Kindrogan Hill (NO 038628), 6/6.

Meadow Pipit  Anthus pratensis


1 singing m, in Juncus field, Straloch PS on 1/6.

2 prs, around trig point on Kindrogan Hill (NO 047627), 2/6.

Common, Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Grey Wagtail  Motacilla cinerea


No birds located on the River Ardle, between the field centre and Enochdhu.

Pied Wagtail  Motacilla alba


Pr, River Ardle at the walled garden on 1/6.

Pr, River Ardle at Kindrogan Bridge on 1/6.

1, Straloch Loch, 1/6.

Also noted at Kirkmichael and Pitlochry.

Dipper  Cinclus cinclus


Ad, River Ardle, near artificial Dipper nest box between field centre and Kindrogan Bridge on 1/6.

Juv, River Ardle at Kindrogan Bridge on 1/6.

Ad, in roadside burn, Riverside Apartment Hotel, Pitlochry, 3/6.

1, flew downstream at West Lodge bridge, Brerachan Water, 4/6.

Wren  Troglodytes troglodytes


Fairly common.

Singing from 03:36 on 3/6; 03:35 on 5/6.

Singing m, in heather/boulder scree at 660m on Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Dunnock  Prunella modularis


Scarce - most birds in clear-fell forest edge.

1 singing m, Kindrogan House, all week.

1 singing m, at curling pond on 1/6.

1 singing m, Kirkmichael bridge, 5/6.

1 singing m, Strathardle Inn, Kirkmichael, 6/6.

1 singing m, Pitlochry train station, 7/6.

Robin  Erithacus rubecula


Common.

Singing from 02:52 on 3/6; 03:05 on 5/6. Last song at dusk heard at 22:19 on 3/6.

Fledged brood heard, Moulin Burn, 3/6.

Several fledged broods noted on 6/6.

Redstart  Phoenicurus phoenicurus


2 singing males (at least one paired) in birch wood (NO 030637) at east end of Glen Brerachan, 4/6.

Whinchat  Saxicola rubetra


Singing male in heather between Moulin and Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Stonechat  Saxicola torquata


Singing male in heather between Moulin and Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Wheatear  Oenanthe oenanthe


2 singing mm, on scree slope below summit of Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Ring Ouzel  Turdus torquatus


Singing m, scree slope below Ben Vrackie summit, 3/6.

Another, or the same male around the trig point on Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Blackbird  Turdus merula


Common.

Singing from 03:16 on 3/6; 03:21 on 5/6.

Song Thrush  Turdus philomelus


Common.

Singing from 03:08 on 3/6; 03:14 on 5/6. Last song at dusk noted at 21:55 on 3/6.

One individual mimicking Chaffinch, Curlew, Oystercatcher and Buzzard in its repertoire.

Pr + b/4, on side lawn at field centre, 3/6.

Mistle Thrush  Turdus viscivorus


1, alarm calling between East Lodge and Kindrogan Bridge on 1/6.

1, with food for young at East/West Balnald on 1/6.

Pr, in sycamores at field centre car park, 2/6.

1, in clear-fell around cemetery on Kindrogan Hill, 2/6.

Pr, Cateran Trail between Enochdhu and Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Whitethroat  Sylvia communis


Singing male, Kindrogan Bridge on 1/6.

Singing male, cemetery on Kindrogan Hill, all week.

Garden Warbler  Sylvia borin


Singing from 03:32 on 3/6; 03:42 on 5/6.

Singing males located at walled garden (2), Kindrogan House, East Lodge, curling pond, Enochdhu, Cateran Trail between Enochdhu and Kirkmichael.

Blackcap  Sylvia atricapilla


Scarce around the field centre this year - only two singing males located.

Elsewhere: 2 singing mmm, Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Willow Warbler  Phylloscopus trochilus


Common.

Singing from 03:56 on 5/6.

Goldcrest  Regulus regulus


Common in forested areas of Kindrogan Hill.

Singing from 03:38 on 3/6; 03:39 on 5/6.

Spotted Flycatcher  Muscicapa striata


More common this year than any previous year.

Singing males noted at the field centre (4), clear-fell areas on Kindrogan Hill (4+), field centre-curling pond track (3), Cateran Trail between Enochdhu and Kirkmichael (3), Balnald, Davan, West Lodge, Straloch, Glen Brerachan, East Lodge, Enochdhu, Kirkmichael.

Singing from 04:01 on 3/6; 04:11 on 5/6.

Long-tailed Tit  Aegithalos caudatus


3, Moulin Burn, 3/6.

Coal Tit  Periparus ater


Fairly common in coniferous areas in Strathardle and Kindrogan Hill.

Occasional at feeders around the field centre.

1, main street in Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Blue Tit  Cyanistes caeruleus


Common.

Using nest boxes and feeders around the field centre.

Great Tit  Parus major


Fairly common.

Using nest boxes and feeders around the field centre.

Singing from 03:44 on 3/6; 03:49 on 5/6. More song than usual at this time of year.

Lone male in tree-less gully in heather, c50 metres above the deer fence on the Moulin-Ben Brackie trail, 3/6.

Treecreeper  Certhia familiaris


Singing from 03:43 on 3/6; 03:47 on 5/6.

1, in birches near East Lodge, 1/6.

Jay  Garrulus glandarius


1, in clear-fell around cemetery on Kindrogan Hill, 2/6.

1, in clear-fell around cemetery on Kindrogan Hill, 4/6.

Magpie  Pica pica


A pair mobbing a Buzzard near Straloch on 1/6.

Noted in Kirkmichael & Pitlochry.

Jackdaw  Corvus monedula        


At least 9 prs nesting in chimneys of Kindrogan House and in natural holes and nest-boxes in the adjacent beech wood.

Vocalising at field centre chimneys from 04:14 on 3/6; 04:26 on 5/6.

32, Cateran Trail, near Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Rook  Corvus frugilegus


Only noted in Glen Brerachan.

Carrion Crow  Corvus corone


A few pairs in the west end of Strathardle.

Advertising call from 03:52 on 3/6; 03:41 on 5/6.

8, mobbing a female Goshawk, Kindrogan Hill, 4/6.

Raven  Corvus corax


Pr, over field centre on 1/6.

Pr, over Kindrogan Bridge on 1/6.

Pr, mobbing a Buzzard on Ben Vrackie, 3/6.

Pr, over cemetery/clear-fell on Kindrogan Hill, 4/6.

1, over Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Starling  Sturnus vulgaris


A few pairs noted at Straloch, Enochdhu, Kirkmichael and Pitlochry.

House Sparrow  Passer domesticus


2 mm, Straloch PS on 1/6.

2-3 prs, Woodend, near Enochdhu, 1/6.

Several in Moulin Square, 3/6.

Common in Pitlochry, 3/6.

Male, Dalreoch, near Enochdhu, 5/6.

9, Kirkmichael Bridge/village shop, 5/6.

Chaffinch  Fringilla coelebs


Abundant. Most females probably incubating this week.

Singing from 04:02 on 3/6; 04:08 on 5/6.

Greenfinch  Carduelis chloris


2mm/1f, on feeders at field station on 1/6.

Singing male, Moulin Burn, 3/6.

Goldfinch  Carduelis carduelis


Pr, around the front lawn of field centre, most days.

1, Pitlochry, 3/6.

2, over Cateran Trail near Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Siskin  Carduelis spinus


Common.

Displaying birds noted in most area.

Regular at feeders around the field centre.

Linnet  Carduelis cannabina


Pr, Moulin deer fence on Ben Vrackie trail, 3/6.

Lesser Redpoll  Carduelis cabaret


1 displaying m, at birch/larch woodland border just west of the curling pond on 1/6.

2 displaying mm, Moulin Burn, 3/6.

Several birds around the birch woodland and conifer plantations around Creag na Cuinneige, 4/6.

Noted on the Cateran Trail between Enochdhu and Kirkmichael, 5/6.

Crossbill  Loxia curvirostra


2, over Straloch Loch on 1/6.

2, over cemetery on Kindrogan Hill, 4/6.

4, over Kindrogan House, 4/6.

Bullfinch  Pyrrhula pyrrhula


Scarce this year - just two registrations.

Pr, in Sitka Spruce re-stock on Kindrogan Hill, 4/6.

Pr, in scrub/woodland between front lawn and main track, Kindrogan House, 4/6.

Reed Bunting  Emberiza schoeniclus


Singing male, in Juncus near Straloch PS on 1/6.

 Glen Brerachan  Fraser Simpson

 

 

Kindrogan Trip Reports:  2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005

 

Kindrogan Field Centre  Fraser Simpson Kindrogan Hill  Fraser Simpson Kindrogan Forest  Fraser Simpson

All photographs 2013  F. S. Simpson

Fraser's Birding Website  fssbirding.org.uk

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