Introduction

The following is taken from the section titled "On the River" [fourth page] in an undated leaflet entitled "Birds of Linn Park" which we think was published in the mid 1990's.

The most spectacular bird in Linn Park is the bright blue Kingfisher. The clean waters of the White Cart provide this once rare bird with a good supply of small fish and insects. Sightings of the Kingfisher are generally very brief because it flies low and fast along the river. But it seldom flies for any distance aind can often be re-located by its high-pitched call.

Another fish-eater is the Heron which stands motionless by the river's edge waiting for its prey to come within striking distance. Its two metre wing-span makes it by far the biggest bird to visit the park.

Most often seen perched on rocks by the river, the Grey Wagtail picks off the insects which cling there. Its grey back, yellow underparts, and its habit of continuously moving its long tail give this bird its name.

The Dipper is the only bird in Britain that can walk underwater. It can often be seen sitting on rocks, its white breast and black body bobbing up and down as it prepares to plunge into the water, turning over stones for the insects and larvae that live there.

The most common duck on the river is the Mallard. With its dark green head and chestnut breast the male is unmistakable. The female's brown colouring provides it with camouflage when sitting on the nest.

We comment that the Goosander, which the leaflet indicates is a "Winter Bird" now seems to be Resident. To be added to the list of "Occasional Visitors" is the Cormorant, and the Goldeneye Duck.

Cormorant

Cormorant Fishing

27th August 2014 - here's a picture of one having an early supper - head down and looking ... an amazing sight.

Young Cormorant drying its wings

Of course a much better photo is from Chris. This one is drying out after a swim ... the feathers are NOT waterproof.

Cormorant by Gerry Que

The latest photo is from Gerry Que on 4th March 2018 above the weir at Netherlee.

Dippers

Dippers are a not uncommon sight: often seen below the waterfall, beneath the castle, and both sides of the Snuffmill Bridge

Thanks for the above to Chris Everett, and below from Aileen Milne, 29th Decmember 2017

Grey Wagtail

To see a Grey Wagtail hovering and hoovering up the flies and other flying bugs is simply amazing. 

Herons

Heron flying down riverHeron sitting in a tree

Herons are difficult to photograph .. here is an attempt by one of the Gentlemens Walking Club on Wednesday 3rd September 2014: In flight, and sitting on a tree.

 

And of course a few really good ones from Chris Everett.

Wandering through the Park down to the Smiddy on a warm Friday evening and met Dieudonne ... and he asked me what sort of bird he had photographed. Fabulous pictures of a Heron below the Castle taken on 25th May 2018.

Probably the best pictures of a Heron were taken by Aileen Milne on 15th May 2018.

Kingfisher

To see a Kingfisher in flight is fantastic. Both the White Bridge and the Snuff Mill bridge make good vantage points.

Kingfisher

Thanks to Chris Everett for the above photo, and to Mhairi for the one below.

The speed at which they fly makes them difficult to see in flight: but one way is to watch a pool and suddenly see the ripples as one dives in and comes out with a small fish.

Goldeneye Ducks

A rare sight ... caught by Chris Everett

In March 2018, Aileen Milne took these lovely photographs.

Goosanders

Mallards

Some lovely photos by Chris Everett...

And some various photos by the Gentlemen walkers ...