Nope that’s no Tope – it’s a SHARK!

Walking on Barvas beach on Thursday I spotted what looked like a seal from a distance. Closer approach showed it to be a shark type. Tope I thought? 6 foot long with shark teeth and a pointed nose resonated with the stories I had heard of sea anglers having a bumper Tope catching season offshore this year.

In the evening though niggles began to set in and some internet browsing finally made the penny drop – Blue Shark – a species I had actually seen several times before off the Isles of Scilly. Next morning it was still there so a frozen temporary home was eventually located, the kids at Barvas School got an impromptu viewing, and contacts were made across the country to see who would want it.

Several interested parties and it looks like this (pregnant) female may end up in a museum.

Birdwise it has been rather quiet. The odd Black tailed Godwit, a build up of Golden Plovers, then today the first decent passerine of the autumn – a Rosefinch in Brue. Not very rosy at this time of year, more drab and grey, which is why birders sometimes refer to the juveniles as ‘Grot Finches’. A first for Brue but in other years I have seen them in Bragar, Barvas, Shadar and Uig – so we do get them.

With American Golden Plover, Pec and Buff breasted Sandpipers (later at Ardroil) on Lewis and Pec, 2 Little Stints and Curlew Sand on Harris in the last couple of days autumn wader migration is in full flow.

PS: The Fea’s report is duff………….

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