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Post Info TOPIC: Flintshire, North Wales


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RE: Flintshire, North Wales


For anyone yearlisting the Bewick's and Whooper Swans are still on Shotwick Fields by Shotwick Sailing Club. The Sailing Club road however was blocked by the roadworks going on there so we had to park and walk. As a result we just poked our noses round the small building to check the swans briefly rather than disturb them by walking further. Thus we made no counts.



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I needed to drop some bits off at Burton Mere Wetlands RSPB so whilst there I travelled the 8 or so miles (by road) over to Shotwick Boating Lake & Shotwick Fields in Flintshire around midday.

Since I hadn't yet seen a Bewick's Swan in 2016 that was my target. In the field directly by the sailing club a large group of swans were feeding. These consisted mainly of Mute Swans with about 40 of these present, also about 15 Whooper Swans were picked out along with 6 Bewick's Swans. The Bewick's and Whooper Swans didn't mix, staying with their own kind in well defined areas, but mixed with Mute Swans throughout. Some other swans remained unidentified as they were down in dips in the field mainly out of sight. The group could be scoped from Burton Mere Wetlands and I could pick out some Bewick's and Whoopers from there but it was at high zoom in gloomy weather so much better to go round to view smile



-- Edited by Doc Brewster on Monday 12th of December 2016 01:50:56 PM

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Had a look on the beach at Kinmel Bay and after a blank earlier in the day we saw the single Snow Bunting that is wintering here on a final call of the day combined with shopping at the Asda here wink

The bird is about 100m E.of the car park just down from Asda, Kinmel Bay, directly in front of the first ramp up to the beach off the cycle track/path, there are two number '3's graffiti-ed on the wall of the ramp. The area immediately in front of the ramp is being seeded by locals so the bird is reliably seen here and can be fantastic to photograph fo any of you that are interested smile



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Shotwick Sailing Club and surrounding area this morning from 9:30 to around 11.

The large group of swans were still in the surrounding fields - the group was around 60 strong with almost equal numbers of Mute Swans, Whooper Swans and, a lifer for me, Bewick's Swans. Bright sunshine at the time gave a really nice opportunity to compare Whoopers and Bewicks side by side.

Also, on the lake, loads of Little Grebes but I couldn't track down the recent Black Necked Grebes. Mallard, Tufted Duck, Gadwall, Shoveler, Goldeneye, Pochard and Coot all well represented.

Around the fields also Reed Bunting, Linnet, Robin, Great Tit, Blue Tit, loads of corvids and, on the way out, a lovely couple of Stonechat on the fenceposts, giving great views.

Kestrel and several Buzzards also around and about.

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Last stop on a North Wales day at Shotwick Sailing Club
33 Bewick Swans
1 Black Swan
3700 Pink footed Geese
Mute Swans
Whooper Swans (not counted)
Male Sparrowhawk across the track in front of the car
2 Buzzards
On the lake
3 Black-necked Grebes
50 plus Coot
Mallard
Black headed gulls


-- Edited by Jon Bowen on Sunday 1st of February 2015 09:09:58 PM

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Sunday 25th January

Early pm visit to Shotwick Lake and adjacent field literally just over the Welsh border in Flintshire.

Lots of Swans in the field next to the Sailing Club lake. They were in large groups but not all together so difficult to put a number
on really.
Mute Swan - approx 40+
Whooper Swan - most numerous, approx 50-60
Bewick's Swan - maybe approx 25-30
(Not seen Bewick's for years, either Martin Mere or Slimbridge with Dad a long time ago)
Black Swan - 1 with a group of Whoopers
Snow Goose type - 1 feeding amongst the Swans, it's black primaries very evident
Rook - lots feeding in the field

A Finch flock - quite mobile around the tyre tracks at the edge of the field where it met the lake perimeter fence.
Rough estimate of around 25 birds consisted of Linnets and Reed Buntings. But when they landed on the wire fencing, a quick scan revealed 6 Twite in there, a welcome shock, and a Meadow Pipit travelling with them too!

Main Sailing Lake...
Black-necked Grebe - 3, very active, constantly diving
Little Grebe - at least 14 (never seen as many together)
Great Crested Grebe - 2
Coot - 50+ with ease
Also Teal, Gadwall, Tufted Duck and Mallard.
1 Buzzard circling over (3 more seen over the M56 on way

1 Peregrine - thought it could've been female as it appeared very large but appreciate that it's difficult to tell with just one bird, flew over the lake and scoured the whole area, everything stayed put on the lake though. After about 5 minutes it drifted towards the water works reservoir next to the sailing club and suddenly a mass of Gulls went up with some closely tailing and mobbing it. It didn't catch anything and soon disappeared.

Gulls - mainly Black-headed and Herring, but there was 1 Great Black-backed present too on the lake.

Usuals present...
Robin, Blackbird, Dunnock, Magpie, Woodpigeon



-- Edited by Rob Creek on Monday 26th of January 2015 11:24:34 PM

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23rd October

Flint Castle

1 Great White Egret
20 Little Egrets
3 Great Crested Grebe
c200 Wigeon


Wepre SSSI

1 Greenshank
5 Little Egrets
20 Teal


Gresford Flash
2 Great Crested Grebe
2 Greylag Geese

-- Edited by James Walsh on Friday 24th of October 2014 10:05:58 AM

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Finally got round to visiting Flint Castle, partly to overcome a phobia I had developed about the place but more importantly to check the Twite flock They duly obliged within in minutes of my arrival at 07.15. I counted 50+ birds. With a couple of Linnet in the flock they were a chatty bunch. Watched them doing their circuit for about an hour. Really good views when they were in the trees just in front of the lifeboat station and then scope required when they went onto the castle walls.

Then nipped over to Kinmel Bay but no sign of the Snow Buntings this time.

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A visit to Flint Castle from 07:30 to 11:00 brought excellent views of the twite upto 50, seemed to be split in to 2 flocks. Moved between the castle turrets, feeding in the salt marsh and the trees near the lifeboat station.

Phil

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The colour-ringed Twite there have apparently been found to represent the whole of the small and declining Snowdonia National Park breeding population, an important congregation for the species in the region!

-- Edited by Henry Cook on Wednesday 27th of February 2013 07:46:27 PM

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Went to Flint Castle this morning and got some great views (via the scope) of the Twite here. At least fifty were seen either perched on the Castle walls or feeding on the marsh at the seaward side. Even closer views were had when they were drinking at a puddle beside the car park when the pink rumps of the males really stood out. A few of them had both coloured and BTO rings.

Superb "little brown jobs" in a lovely setting on a spring-like day.

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paul brady wrote:

For all those fans of guided walks or for those who are just beginning their birding career:

Smuggler's Inn Car Park
Wednesday 20th April
10.30am

A FREE guided walk around the RSPB Point of Ayr reserve

We will be on the look out for migrants but the area should still hold a few of our winter visitors.

The Liverpool tide time is at 1pm and at a height of 9.7m.

Any enquiries please phone 0151 336 7681






Thanks to all those that came along - really made it worthwhile!
3 sandwich tern
2 whimbrel
5 white wagtails
were the standouts!

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First Swallow of the year in Harwarden near Airbus.

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For all those fans of guided walks or for those who are just beginning their birding career: Smuggler's Inn Car Park Wednesday 20th April 10.30am A FREE guided walk around the RSPB Point of Ayr reserve We will be on the look out for migrants but the area should still hold a few of our winter visitors. The Liverpool tide time is at 1pm and at a height of 9.7m. Any enquiries please phone 0151 336 7681

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Assuming this is now the correct place for Shotton and Shotwick I was there briefly for a walk about near the Papermill and Firing Range on Saturday morning. There is now a mature area of reedbed near to the Papermill that I'm sure must have played host to a Bittern this winter, as it looks better than the area of reeds at Inner Marsh Farm nearby where they have been reported on and off, but suspect this reedbed is not closely if at all visited by birders!

Anyway, only a 5 Pochard and 5 Tufties on the water body next to the reeds (maybe explaining lack of birding interest!?), but a few reed bunting, a buzzard overhead and a Merlin on a post nearby brightened things up a little.

In the fields off the A548 there was the usual swan flock, but no sign of any Bewick's left with them. 33 Mute Swans and 16 Whooper Swans was all I could see, despite driving about a bit and checking as many of the fields as I could. Perhaps like the Pink-footed Geese flying overhead, they have also drifted away.

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RSPB High Tide Bird Watch at Flint/Oakenholt Marsh yesterday:

On the walk to/from the roost:
2 x common snipe
Jack snipe biggrin.gif
Song thrush
Reed bunting (m&f)
Grey plover
Plenty of curlew
Common gull
BH gull
GBB gull
4 x mute swan
Grey wagtail
Pied wagtail
2 x raven

At the roost:
4500+ oystercatcher
4000+ black tailed godwit
2000+ dunlin
1000+ knot
Huge flocks flying in and wheeling in formation, never seen anything like it giggle.gif

Couple of grey plover
c. 6 bar tailed godwit
Shelduck
Teal
Wigeon
Curlew
Mute swan
Lots of pink feet over
Canada geese

Fantastic morning, thanks to Geoff who led the walk, pointed out the various waders and provided some interesting history of the area as well.

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The Environment Agency have re-commenced work on the embankment footpath leading to the viewpoint (site of former hide) at RSPB Point of Ayr for strengthening and heightening of the embankment. It is estimated that this work will take up to 5 weeks. There is access from BHP Billiton car park.



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Visit to parents in Flint over xmas - on xmas day they had a flock of c.15 bramblings visiting the garden throughout the day, apparently they have had at least 12 every day since.

Great xmas pressie for my daughter - new tick smile.gif

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Helen Jones wrote:

The goldfinches appear to be building a nest in one of their trees - is this usual at this time, seemed a bit late to me?

Also, after puzzling over mysterious holes that had appeared in their lawn overnight, they have now discovered a family of three badgers are visiting the garden - I'm v jealous!! aww.gif

-- Edited by Helen Jones on Tuesday 6th of July 2010 06:40:51 AM







The goldfinches are now sitting on the nest. Also plenty of young house sparrows visiting the feeders which is good news, as well as the usual tits and finches.

Also, not birds but went down to stay this weekend and saw 11 badgers in the garden!!biggrin.gif

There is one young greenfinch which is visiting which doesn't look quite right - it's enormously fat compared to the others (but not fluffed up which I know can be a sign of illness). It doesn't seem to be showing any other signs of illness, eg lethargy, panting, and was feeding away quite happily. It also seems to have a very small beak for a greenfinch and a bit of a squashed head, and the markings aren't quite right either - it only has a yellow flash down one side and the tail feathers are more black and white on one side than the other. confuse.gif Does anyone know what might cause this, and whether the bird is likely to be healthy/survive?

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Helen Jones


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Visit to my mum & dad in Flint this weekend. On their feeders:

GS Woodpecker
Lots of house sparrows
Chaffinches
Blue tits
Great tits
Goldfinches

The goldfinches appear to be building a nest in one of their trees - is this usual at this time, seemed a bit late to me?

Also, after puzzling over mysterious holes that had appeared in their lawn overnight, they have now discovered a family of three badgers are visiting the garden - I'm v jealous!! aww.gif

Quick trip down to Flint Point at dusk:

3 little egrets
4 dunlin
common sandpiper
BH gulls
H Gulls
GBB and LBB gulls
6 black-tailed godwits
lots of swallows over
Jay
2 grey herons
oystercatcher (heard)
redshank

-- Edited by Helen Jones on Tuesday 6th of July 2010 06:40:51 AM

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Helen Jones


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Helen Jones wrote:

Having grown up in Flint and lived there for 18 years, found a great birding site today that I never knew existed - Flint Point, just a bit further down from the castle.

A quick half hour mooch today, saw:

On the estuary:

Little stint (I think)


There were lots more waders, but I don't have a scope and they were just too far out to see enough detail with bins no.gif






Any sighting from here feel free to report it to the RSPB team at IMF on 0151 336 7681 - we actually own/maange a lot of the masrh around this area.

We had a guided walk earlier in the year - a rare chance to go across parts of the marsh normally off-limits.

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Feel free to pop along to an RSPB free guided walk on April 17th at Point of Ayr - we will be on the look out for waders and migrants.

http://www.rspb.org.uk/events/details.asp?id=tcm:9-246693

All the details at the above link.

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Having grown up in Flint and lived there for 18 years, found a great birding site today that I never knew existed - Flint Point, just a bit further down from the castle.

A quick half hour mooch today, saw:

In the trees along the path:
Goldfinch
LT Tits
Blue tits
Great tits
Wood pigeon
Magpie

On the estuary:
Wigeon (3)
Mallard
Teal
Curlew (1)
Common sandpiper (at least 2)
Redshank (approx 60)
Black tailed godwits (at least 300)
Oystercatcher
Pink feet (approx 20)
Knot
Little stint (I think)
Common gull (2)
Black-headed gull
Lesser BB gull
Great BB gull

There were lots more waders, but I don't have a scope and they were just too far out to see enough detail with bins no.gif

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Helen Jones


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Xmas Day morning - driving through Deeside Industrial Estate on approach to the Dee Bridge:

2 buzzard
1 kestrel
1 little egret
1 fieldfare
flock of approx 20 redwing
lots of lapwing (couldn't count)

Not a bad start to the day! biggrin.gif

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