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The time to expect the unexpected

September was warmer than the same month last year, with mean temperature almost two degrees higher.

But it was wetter with more than twice the amount of rain. It was a little drier than the previous two months, but not by much. September is the start of the peak migration season, when many birds are on the move. A wide range of species - more than 100 - were recorded during the month. It was certainly the time to expect the unexpected. The highlight was the first record this year of great crested grebe. Two were seen off shore close to the Fallen Rocks car park on September 23. It is an occasional passage migrant and winter visitor not recorded every year. Other unusual records included an osprey photographed over Glen Chalmadale on 10th with another sighting of perhaps the same bird at Sliddery on 11th and four brent geese at the mouth of the Rosa and Cloy burns on 21st.

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