With the news on 15 May that the Bearded Seal was still on Orkney - it seemed possible that it would summer. Should I go? Yes - of course.
Out of the car at first light, John O'Groats provided excellent views of some species such as Rock Dove - these looking fairly 'pure' if you ignored any slightly more feral-looking birds (they were cropped out!!).
Bonxies passed by very close to the cliff edge.
On arrival on Orkney (South Ronaldsay) I took the road to Kirkwall and then out to Finstown to look for the seal - would it still be there...?
Bearded Seal - phew!
This beastie showed superbly at low tide - giving me and some local residents excellent views.
From all angles the 'Beard' was very obvious.
After leaving the seal, I went in search of other potential mammal ticks - without success today...
Whilst driving down the road near Elvie I found a couple of Common Cranes flying over - a nice self-find!
I tracked the birds for a while, whilst they dropped, before putting the news out.
Other bits today included; Red-throated Diver
And many Red-breasted Mergansers (right - with Eider).