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Post Info TOPIC: North Wales and Anglesey


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RE: North Wales and Anglesey


28/11/21

A good day in North Wales yesterday, started at Llyn Brenig where the Great Grey Shrike showed well on the clearfell along the B4501. Several Crossbills and 2 Ravens went over while we were there. Chatting to some other birders we got a tip to try the feeders at the Visitor Centre for a single Brambling, which was a late yeartick for me. Also there a single Crossbill dropped in and perched nicely for us.

The weather was actually pretty good despite the stuff going on nearer home, so we decided to head for a village called Llanelltyd having seen some recent reports of Hawfinch there. It is just next to Dolgellau on the Mawddach river. When we arrived the setting was great, one of those ancient Welsh churches with lots of Yews around it, nestling at the bottom of a wooded hillside. We saw a Hawfinch within 2 minutes and spent an enjoyable hour or so watching them perching up and then shuttling in and out of the churchyard trees. When someone walked into the church grounds and everything flushed, there were clearly over 20 Hawfinches in there, amongst Redwings, Mistle Thrushes, Nuthatch, Chaffinch and Blackbirds. Fantastic!

Looking at the area on Google, there are huge tracts of woodland surrounding the village so no surprise that they're there but the site doesn't seem to have the profile of others?

A cracking pair of species for a winter's day.



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With a much better forecast for a seawatch off Pensarn today I decided that a day out in the sunshine at the seaside wouldn't be a bad way to spend a day off. On arrival bright sunshine and a flat calm sea were good signs.

I started scoping and was a bit disappointed to find that most scoters were a long way out, not great as I had to crank the zoom up to 50x for a decent view. as the tide came in it brought some birds a bit closer but there were never big numbers close in to make searching easy. At first I was on my own but a bit later a few other birders turned up and then by c.2pm a good throng of at least a dozen scopes were trained out to sea. Even with all these eyes looking we never did manage to locate a Surf Scoter. A consolation personally was a Long-tailed Duck, which was also picked up by one of the other birders present, and that was a yeartick for me. Also seen by several of us, including myself was another Velvet Scoter. Plenty of Red-throated Divers again and Red-breasted Megansers, Shags and Cormorants too. A mate had a Great Northern Diver but I missed that species today.

Even with no Surf Scoter this was a lovely way to spend the day and chatting to members of the public explaining what we were doing and what was out there was fun too. Hopefully they'll appreciate the area for more than just the TV programme 'I'm a non-entity, get me out of here' that's being filmed locally and attracting tourists!



-- Edited by Doc Brewster on Monday 22nd of November 2021 05:08:53 PM

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Went down to Llyn Brenig today, following a few positive sightings of a must see winter visitor.

On arrival a few birders were present but news was negative. A short 10min wait was enough when the Great Grey Shrike reappeared up high on a lone dead tree. It then showed really well until a Raven flushed it off and it then went missing for nearly 45mins. It was refound a long way off so I headed off up to the north coast. Whilst watching the Great Grey Shrike lots of Crossbills were flying about and calling on the opposite side of the road.

I next headed to Pensarn to check out the scoters offshore. Amongst the huge numbers of Common Scoters, some pretty close, I picked out a single Velvet Scoter in flight after only 2mins. But thereafter nothing but Commons in the Scoter line! Also out on the sea were over 15 Red-throated Divers, a single Great Northern Diver, a couple of Red-breasted Mergansers, a couple of Guillemots, several Gannets and Shag & Cormorant. The swell and a receding tide made it hard and despite several of us searching really hard we never found the hoped for Surf Scoter!

Finally I called it a day, but another good one in North Wales, always a great place for birding smile



-- Edited by Doc Brewster on Saturday 20th of November 2021 10:50:57 PM

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a trip down to Foel on Sunday and nice to see a pair of Wheatears



-- Edited by Ian McKerchar on Tuesday 12th of October 2021 09:15:28 AM



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Adult drake Surf Scoter this afternoon off Pensarn, keeping very close to an adult drake Velvet Scoter, even following it in flight. About 60 ish Red Throated Diver,  inc some still with a reasonable amount of summer plumage remaining.



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Timperley life list c. 89 (ish). Barn Owl 4.11.19, Green Sand 27.8.19, Little Egret 13.2.19, ringtail harrier sp 20.10.18, Fawn Yawn 15.10.18, Grasshopper Warbler  15.4.16, Tree Pipit 13.4.16, Yellowhammer 5.4.15, Hobby May '11, Wigeon Dec '10



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Nice surprise finding an adult winter Bonapartes Gull off Rhyl GC this afternoon. 

 

Vid is a bit shakey,  best freeze framed

 

Edit - mght have to make do with a pic



-- Edited by Mike Duckham on Tuesday 28th of September 2021 09:42:31 PM

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Timperley life list c. 89 (ish). Barn Owl 4.11.19, Green Sand 27.8.19, Little Egret 13.2.19, ringtail harrier sp 20.10.18, Fawn Yawn 15.10.18, Grasshopper Warbler  15.4.16, Tree Pipit 13.4.16, Yellowhammer 5.4.15, Hobby May '11, Wigeon Dec '10



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Little Orme/Angel Bay Penrhyn 12.00-15.00

2nd choice venue for a sea watch as the Great Orme was being used for cycle racing.

2 Choughs, 1 Kestrel, 5 Stonechats and 9 Ravens. Some Ravens were highly vocal and doing spectacular display flights.

Large gathering of mixed Cormorants and Shags on the lower cliffs, the former appear to form at least 80% of the roost.

With a SE breeze blowing the sea watch proved a little disappointing with just 2 Gannets and 6 Kittiwakes apart the usual gulls.

A flock of around 30 Jackdaws flew above the headland and were frequently harassed by a pair of Magpies, who appeared to be

doing it purely for fun, the occasional Raven also joined in too.

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A stroll down the Cob at Malltraeth on Saturday and pleased to see a Little Stint



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Forgot to say I saw a couple of ringed Sandwich Terns, one with a red ring which could possibly be Dutch but I didnt get the code, and the other had a white ring KZJ which is Irish.

Ive had a reply from Tony Murray who asked me for the time seen, as the same bird was also seen later on at Rhos Point.
Info below.

17/06/2016 Inish, Lady's Island Lake, Wexford

29/07/2016 Ballinclamper Strand, Clonea, Dungarvan, Co.Waterford

08/08/2016 Dunkettle, Cork Harbour, Co. Cork

02/12/2019 at sea, Atlantic Ocean, The Gambia

15/12/2019 at sea, Atlantic Ocean, The Gambia

11/05/2020 Hodbarrow, Cumbria, England

12/05/2020 Hodbarrow, Cumbria, England

18/05/2020 Hodbarrow, Cumbria, England

24/07/2021 Cemlyn, Anglesey, Wales

25/07/2021 Cemlyn, Anglesey, Wales

25/07/2021 Rhos Point, Rhos on Sea, Colwyn Bay,

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Sunday 25th July

Cemlyn Bay.

Finally a free morning had me deciding on a trip to Anglesey as a certain Albatross hadnt been seen on the Saturday so I thought Id missed my chance with that one. Then on the way here, news came thru of the Albatross present again, oh well maybe next year I thought.

- Elegant Tern (Lifer)
An absolute stunner of a Tern, present when I arrived, showed well for pretty much most of my visit. Displaying to the Sandwich Terns on the large island, did a few fly rounds then back to its favoured concrete post to display some more.

Also plenty of Arctic Terns, Common Terns, and 1 (possibly 2) Roseatte Terns.
I picked one up on call as it flew over then another birder called another one out.

Called in a Holyhead Harbour on way back and found an adult Mediterranean Gull.



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Post for Sunday 11th.

Cemlyn Bay...

Elegant tern showing well eventually after an hours wait on the large island of the tern colony.
2 roseate terns also showing well.
As well as the common, Arctic & sandwich terns there was 1 adult Mediterranean gull.
Peregrine falcon disturbing all the terns & did get a hold of one but somehow lost its grip & it got free.
1 Red breasted merganser
5 Black guillemot
2 shag
2 little egret
7 curlew
3 rock pipit
2 stonechat
1 sparrowhawk
A short watch out to sea & 11 manx shearwater passed & just one gannet.

South stack...

1 Hooded crow
5 chough
1 juvenile wheatear
1 juvenile stonechat
1 rock pipit
Plus all the usual guillemot, razorbill, kittiwake, only 1 puffin seen sat on the sea.
Several manx shearwaters & gannets passing.




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Today a typical day out.

 

A dawn start and heading to Cemlyn Bay by 05.00 next comes a text alert at 05.30 two Avocets at Audenshaw.....typical.

Arrive at the car park at 07.20 to be told that the Elegant Tern had not been seen since around 06.00.... typical.

Within fifteen minutes it returns and lands right in front of us, decides to then fly around the fifteen or so gathered as an audience and then lands again, we are lucky sometimes...typical

No sign of the Roseate Terns..typical

We have to leave as we are on one of my agendas, poor Cath...typical

We arrive at South Stack for 08.15  and miss three Chough in the car park..typical.

Amongst the usuals we are happy to find three Puffin, several Manx Shearwater well out at sea and eventually the Choughs returned...a bit typical.

At another location we found two Common Lizard and one female Adder...not typical

This ended up being an untypical day as we managed one Lifer and just one snake.

We did want to visit the museum at Llangefni which houses a number of Charles Tunnicliffes works who had taught Caths dad at Manchester Grammar however my agenda failed me ..typical

 



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Thursday 8 july,another trip to Anglesey with much better weather in prospect ,Cemlyn bay first stop,elegant tern showing very well,common tern ,arctic tern,black guillemot on the sea,red breasted merganser, little egret , carrion  crow ,black headed gull ,sandwich tern ,oystercatcher ,roseate tern remained elusive and unseen by me,       next stop,south stack,    chough, linnet guillemot, puffin,razorbill,herring gull, kittiwake, meadow pipit,stonechat, hooded crow, swallow ,lesser black backed gull,great black backed gull,        malltreath next,curlew ,whitethroat, little egret, grey heron,moorhen, swallow,greylag goose,,final stop for the day visit ,       beaumaris ,herring gull, little ringed plover,cormorant, common tern, .......and a couple of buzzard on street lamps a s we rejoin the a55to return to base



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Tues July 5th.

Anglesey with Ian Lyth & Paul Greenall.

Cemlyn Bay RSPB.
Elegant Tern showing well in the Sandwich Tern colony.
Arctic, Common and a single Roseate Tern.
Mediterranean Gull.
A single Black Guillemot out on the sea.
Fulmar.
Raven on the car-park.

Holyhead Old Fish Harbour.
Black Guillemot. Definitely 5 (possibly 8) with a young one being fed in a nesting hole.

South Stack.
The massed battalions of Razorbill and Guillemot with a few Puffin thrown in.
Fulmar.
Chough 5+. Plenty of flyovers with a few good views on the ground.
Raven.
Manx Shearwater. A steady stream passing out on the sea.

Did well weather-wise .. warm and dry all day while constant rain in GM.

Roger.





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One bad Tern deserves a good one. Sunday 4th July 2021

   Two or maybe three Caspian Tern`s have been wandering between Far Ings, Reads Island, Barton Gravel Pits in Lincolnshire and Southfield Reservoir & RSPB St Aidans in Yorkshire for the last few days. After the excitement recently we thought we would try to catch up with them, so me and Kevin C gave them a go. We arrived at a clammy, dark and occasionally wet Southfield Reservoir and were greeted by none other than Mark K & his dog Ted. After seeing the freshly arrived Ruddy Shelduck`s the day kind of went downhill. No report`s or sightings of any Caspian Tern`s were received, so after 5.5 hours we went home. News of a Western Rufous Turtle Dove at Easington did not even tempt us to go for it after this disappointment.

   Looking forward to a day off on Sunday, news that an Elegant Tern had been found at Cemlyn Bay on Anglesey in Wales, I was sort of tempted. Two mates of ours from Huddersfield Dave W & Rob D had gone to see the Western Rufous Turtle Dove at Easington early morning, then news that the Black-browed Albatross had returned to Bempton in Yorkshire. So after seeing Albert they got the news about the Elegant Tern and decided to do a Cross Country twitch for it. Dave W rung me and said Shall we pick you up on the way? We met at Milnrow junction at 4pm and I immediately gave them some bum directions, but we soon put that right! The weather most of the way was very showery until we reached the Rhyl area, then a few rays of sunshine came through. Good news that the Elegant Tern was still in the Sandwich Tern colony added a few more miles per hour onto our speed. The road from Valley to Cemlyn after leaving the A55 was soon negotiated, then onto the cart tracks to the reserve added to the anticipation. We could see about 10 people looking into the colony as we arrived, we then dashed along the shingle shore and were quickly directed on the Elegant Tern, it was a new British Lifer for my two pals! Well done on having completed such an epic journey today and thus getting the reward.

   The masses of Sandwich Terns, Common & Arctic Terns at Cemlyn are always a joy to watch as they carefully tend to their chicks etc. Other birds in the bay: - 2 Black Guillemot`s, 20+ Manx Shearwater, two of which showed really well down to about 50 yards distance, my best ever close view of these seabirds. It was getting quite late as we left and more rain towards Manchester (where else) had me home by 10-15pm. Thanks Dave for driving.

Dave O.



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I also made the two hour trip to Cemlyn, arriving at 4.30 pm. The weather there was fine, fairly sunny and clear, around 16*c. The Elegant Tern had gone missing for well over an hour, following a Peregrine spooking the colony, putting all the terns up. I wasnt waiting too long before it was refound and excellent views were had, mainly preening with the odd flight view. Like Paul, I also had good views of the Roseate Tern which was present throughout. Lifer.

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Wasn't planning on anything much today but when a bird was Mega-ed on Anglesey I decided to head over.

Not a bad trip and sunny conditions on arrival at Cemlyn RSPB. A full car park but still a couple of spaces so I was OK. I made my way along the shingle ridge to the smallish gathering of twitchers, lots of birding pals amongst them, and before I could set up my scope one of the guys, Ian Evans, offered me his scope with the bird in it. I took up the offer and was looking at my first Welsh Elegant Tern! I say first Welsh as I'd seen my first UK one at Church Norton down south a few years ago, and I do in fact keep a Welsh LIst. That Church Norton one had been a wee bit underwhelming to say the least! Roadworks, diversions a long, long wait from dawn and then a long diverted drive home was rewarded with a 2 second view in flight for 20hrs of effort!! So given the chance of a second I couldn't turn it down. This bird was on show nearly al the time, calling, displaying and seen well in flight and on the deck. It even posed for picccies, well worth the trip. Also on the island was a nice Roseate Tern as well as the usual Arctic, Common and Sandwich Terns. I also found an adult Mediterranean Gull, albeit briefly as it flew off as I got it in my scope!

I also decided on a brief scan out to sea and was rewarded with a couple of Manx Shearwaters, a handful of Gannets and numerous auks, too distant to ID with certainty but most likely Guillemots and Razorbills in the main.

This tern could well be settled in with the Sandwich Tern colony so a great chance for NW birders to catch up with this species smile



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24th June 2021

Circuit of Llyn Crafnant and down one side of Llyn Geirionydd (west of Trefriw and Llanwrst)

Around trails to south of Llyn Crafnant :
Redstart x 3 (2M and 1F)
Pied Flycatcher x 1

Along west side of Llyn Geirionydd:
2 x Common Sandpiper (1 adult and 1 juvenile)

Also Red Kite seen along B5106 on way to destination from Conway direction.



-- Edited by Steve Judge on Thursday 24th of June 2021 06:03:11 PM

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23rd June 2021:

Cemlyn Bay, Anglesey - real pleasure to see colony of breeding Sandwich Tern and Common Tern. Also Arctic Tern and Mediterranean Gull were present. The main highlight, though, was a single Roseate Tern (a lifer for me)!

Other highlights earlier in the week were a single Pied Flycatcher in woodland along Elwy Valley northwest of Llanfair Talhaiarn (few miles south of Abergele); and four Red-Breasted Merganser and Dipper near Llanfairfachan Pavilion.

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Great day at Cors Ddyga. Highlights being Black Tailed Godwit, Great White Egret, Little Egret, Curlew, Marsh Harrier, Hobby, Red Kite, Sedge Warbler. Grasshopper Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher & Stonechat.

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Thanks to all who put forward information prior to my trip,very valuable and accurate especially for black guillemot. Thanks 



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Day 1 Glorious weather at home boded well for the trip,unfortunately the weather on arrival at south stack had other ideas,thick sea mist put paid to the visit, i couldn't see anything past the car park,abandon ship we thought and went to penrhos beach,i saw wheatear ,red  breasted merganser,4 sandwich tern,2 black guillemot at distance, manx shearwaters, black headed gull,oystercatcher,heron,linnet, house sparrows, blackbird, in the evening at the fish dock was black guillemot 5 i think on the water,Day2 no change with the sea mist,so trearddur bay was next,turnstone, oystercatcher,lesser black backed gull, house martin,swift, herring gull ,only a short stay here as the visibility was poor ,next stop ,Cemlyn bay,sandwich tern were indeed a spectacular sight,hundreds if not thousands in the air at one point, oystercatcher,little egret,heron,red breasted merganser, linnet ,meadow pipit a roseate tern was said to be there but with the strength of the wind coming across the lagoon it was impossible and uncomfortable to keep steady with either binoculars or scope, manx shearwaters,cormorant, black guillemot, common tern,great black backed gull,black headed gull, gannet at distance, goldfinch, greylag and canada goose,carrion crow,little egret, reed bunting, ,the constant stream of sandwich tern returning with food was a great sight to see and while out of that wind, very tolerable, Day 3,a better day in prospect  damp early,sun later, .....kestrel from premier inn window ,onward to south stack ,sea mist clearing rapidly, if not totally ,gannet ,guillemot, razorbill,rock pipit,kittiwake, stonechat,chough, linnet,herring gull,common gull,puffin,fulmar,peregrine, jackdaw.,lesser black backed gull., meadow pipit,swallow, .......here comes the sea mist again and hung around untill  3.30 then it cleared to be a very nice afternoon ,Day 4 ,the sun had really turned up,...........by the old brickworks,greenfinch,whitethroat, chiffchaff, dunnock,goldfinch, jackdaw ,buzzard,stonechat, woodpigeon, magpie, blackbird , as i look seaward gannet,cormorant ,herring gull.......south stack,raven,peregrine, kittiwake ,common gull,herring gull,lesser black backed gull, guillemot, razorbill,linnet, stonechat, swallow,gannet ,meadow pipit ,chough,oystercatcher,fulmar.



-- Edited by David Hughes on Sunday 13th of June 2021 02:36:01 PM



-- Edited by David Hughes on Sunday 13th of June 2021 02:38:07 PM

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Visited Pensychnant Nature Reserve on Sychnant Pass Conwy.Treated to a very feisty Wren chasing a Cuckoo from top of conifer.
Redstarts and Spotted Flycatcher on sight.But the Wren stole the show.

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Hi David,

If you are travelling from Greater Manchester and don't wish to travel as far as Holyhead, then good numbers of Black Guillemots have been around the Great Orme in Llandudno this spring. I've had counts of 11 on 21st March, 10 on 3rd April and 6 on 11th May. Although when I looked yesterday (2nd June) I could only find one. Some of the earlier birds may have moved on but some will be on eggs now. The best places to look are in the bay immediately to the W of the pier, just after the Marine Drive toll booth and also a good bit further around Marine Drive, before you get to the cafe part way round, where the Kittiwakes, Guillemots and Razorbills nest, if you know those cliffs. The nearer to high tide might be better and a scope would be better but the birds are often close into the cliffs and right below your vantage point. I've also seen them feeding around the pier and in Llandudno Bay itself this spring. They will probably be easier to see in Holyhead Harbour but I think the Great Orme might beat that location for beauty! Good luck in your quest.

Best wishes,

Bill.

-- Edited by Bill Myerscough on Thursday 3rd of June 2021 06:24:59 PM

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The old Harbour at Holyhead is the easiest place to See Black Necked Guillimot .



-- Edited by JOHN TYMON on Thursday 3rd of June 2021 05:19:45 PM

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Whats the best location on anglesey for black guillemot?



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y'day 30th June

Holyhead Harbour, fisherman's quay
3+ Black Guillemot on very calm sea

Also, 1+ Grey Seal in harbour - the fisherman said that they would scare off the fish. As they said that, a large shoal (Whiting?) swam past them, unobserved

South Stack
~4 Rock Pipit displaying
1000s of Guillemot & Razorbill as expected
4 Puffin from RSPB tower, after very long search; none visible from lighthouse path
1 Fulmar
~4 Chough

Surprisingly, no Peregrines, I guess they're further away this year; also no definite sign of the Hooded Crow(s) though a tantalising glimpse of a possible

Numerous boats around: couple of wildlife cruises keeping decent distance, but group of canoes went through the resting flock, and another group of jetskis also went through them at high speed with birds desperately trying to get out the way. What absolutely selfish, stupid ****s

Also, huge numbers of humans everywhere on this Bank Holiday Sunday - so I went home

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A glorious sunny day in Anglesey made a fantastic change.

Just over 50 species visiting South Stack, Cemlyn/Hen Borth and Point Lynas.

Only three Puffins for me on the sea at South Stack, also four Chough and found some Kittiwake. A few distant Gannet also.

Cemlyn tern colony was very busy (terns and people) but the point, and path to Hen Borth was peaceful. Best birds were four Raven, a few Wheatear, with two male and one female Red-breasted Merganser and a single Black Guillemot in the bay.



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South Stack RSPB 11.00-14.30

Heathland : 5 Stonechats, 1 Wheatear, 4 Linnets, 4 Meadow Pipits and 1 Common Whitethroat.

Cliffs and shoreline : 4 Choughs, 8 Rock Pipits and 4 Ravens.

In addition to the mass ranks of Guillemots and Razorbills on the cliff ledges at least a dozen Fulmars were seen.

6 Puffins swam amongst the rafts of auks below the observation tower.

A noisy pair of Oystercatchers were at the base of the cliffs, and a single Gannet flew by offshore.

No sign of either Kittiwakes or Shags around the colony, the nearest I could find to the latter were a single pair of Cormorants.

On the journey home a pair of Red Kites were seen being mobbed by crows above the A55 near Gaerwen.



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Originally posted today by David Hughes:

Did an over night stay on Anglesey,25 yrs since last visit,wheatear ,stonechat, chough,peregrine, guillemot,razorbill ,linnet,sand martin ,house martin,swallow,rook ,carrion crow,jackdaw,house sparrow,common tern, common sandpiper,curlew,sparrowhawk, oystercatcher,fulmar,lesser black backed gull,herring gull,gannet,cormorant, mallard,herring gull,  robin ,blackbird  ,song thrush, magpie, buzzard meadow pipit and puffin at south stack on the sea.



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Monday, 28th September 2020.

Anglesey - RSPB site Cors Ddyga.

I dipped on below two birds:
Taiga Bean Goose was spotted by another birder yesterday and also first thing this morning with Greylag Geese.
Two Glossy Ibis had been on this site for about 10 days until yesterday. But today - no sightings.

Birds seen included:
Marsh Harrier (adult male) x 1
Whooper Swans x2
Buzzard x 2
Great White Egret x 1
Little Egret x 5
Grey Heron x 4
Snipe x 20




-- Edited by Steve Judge on Monday 28th of September 2020 04:43:25 PM

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Sunday, 27th September 2020. 11:30 - 16:30 hrs. Anglesey - Cemlyn Bay.

Anglesey - Walk from car park east of Cemlyn bay - then west between lagoon and bay - along headland to Trwyn Cemlyn - south along coast to Hen Borth - and return.

Hooded Crow x 1 (lifer)
Golden Plover x 12
Chough x 2
Raven x 2
Turnstone x 2
Curlew x 35
Ringed Plover x 2
Sandpiper x 15
Black-Tailed Godwit x 1
Goosander x 1
Redshank x 7
Little Egret x 12
Oystercatcher x 25
Grey Heron x 3
Stonechat x 8
Wren x 2
Buzzard x 3
Kestrel x 1
Cormorant x 3
Meadow Pipit x 10
Goldfinch x 5
Linnet x 1
Blue Tit x 1
Mallard x 40
Herring Gull x 30
Crow x 20
Jackdaw x 50
Rook x 15
Magpie x 3
Robin x 4
House Sparrow x 3
Woodpigeon x 1
Feral Pigeon x 2
Starling x 40



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Thought I would head over to Great Orme, given the calmer conditions and nice, sunny day. Arrived at the small car park by the limestone pavement just before 6pm to take advantage of the Golden Hour from a photography point of view. A couple were just leaving, after having watched the juvenile Dotterel for a while so, it was just me and the Dotterel for half an hour.

As Doc mentions these are a most confiding species and, as at Pendle Hill in previous years, I just knelt down and waited. I wasnt aware until fairly recently that once they have laid, a percentage of Scottish females leave the males to bring up the young and then continue on to Scandinavia where they mate again and have a second brood. This juvenile is most probably from the high Scottish tops but I suppose there is a chance that it is from elsewhere. A beautiful bird nonetheless.



-- Edited by Mark Jarrett on Monday 21st of September 2020 02:29:26 PM

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With a good forecast and news that the bird I wanted to see had stuck around I decided to head into N.Wales and up onto the Great Orme this morning. As I said the sun was shining but it was blowing a hooley, well it if pretty exposed up there!

Parking up in the Limestone Pavement car park I could see a couple of birders/photographers up on the skyline to the east. So up I went. The first bird in my bins was a beautiful Golden Plover, really close and then movement behind it drew my attention and there was the bird that I'd come to see, a juvenile Dotterel. The bird, typical of all Dotterels was totally unconcerned by the 3 or 4 of us watching it and just pottered around feeding well. I just sat still and the bird came closer and closer. I ended up with frame-filling shots of the birds front end, it was so close for digiscoping!! In the end just 2 of us were left watching and photographing the bird and eventually I decided to haed on. I then did a short seawatch seeing as how I haven't been to the sea for a while!! Not much other than a Cormorant, 4 Gannets, 3 Guillemots, 6 Kittiwakes and most surprising a Sandwich Tern. I know it isn't too late for terns but I just never expected it today!!



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A couple of hours sea watch from the minor headland around four miles east of Pwllheli on the Llyn Peninsula. Amongst others :- Gannet (c.12) Cormorant (4) Shag (1) Goosander (3) Common Tern (c.10) Sandwich Tern (c.25) Mediterranean Gull (min 6) Swallow (c.6) Meadow Pipit Rock Pipit (1) Linnet There was a large rocky area around the next bay which, at low tide, held a nice selection of gulls and terns. I only had ten minutes to spare there but picked out at least six Mediterranean Gulls plus most of the terns and only covering a small part of the rocks.

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Decided that this weekend would be an Osprey one. Decided on some Welsh birds so popped the 67miles over to Llyn Brenig today, an easy run. Pretty much as soon as we arrived we saw Osprey in the air and on scoping the nest platform one was onthere too. We assume that the two flying birds were the adults and that the third bird was this years young bird. So 3 seen in total. Views are pretty distant unless you book the forward photography Hide, but a digiscoped effort which I quite like is attached.



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A great day visiting a few locations.

Highlights:

First stop: Gronant dunes:
Estimated 250+ Little Terns - mostly on the beach, but many back and forth to the colony and fishing.
A small number of Sandwich Terns on the beach.
1 Marsh Harrier over the dunes and it (or another) later seen over the sea which caused panic amongst the Terns.
4 Sanderling - in summer plumage
c40 Dunlin - all summer plumage
Quite a few Ringed Plover plus a young chick.
1 Grey Heron over the sea
1 Common Gull plus the usual Gulls
3 Reed Warbler
2 Stonechat
(Also 2 Grey Seal in the sea)

Anglesey:
Holyhead Harbour:
8 Black Guillemots
1 Shag
1 Raven
(Also: 1 Grey Seal)

South Stack RSPB:
Breeding ledges now mostly empty apart from a handful of stragglers of Guillemots
On the sea a few Guillemots, 2 Razorbill and 7 Puffins
6 Shags
Still lots of Kittiwakes nesting on the island as were the Herring, Lesser Black-backed and a few Great Black-backed Gulls.
A few Chough
1 Hooded Crow sat on a fence post at The Range
3 Rock Pipit
1 Stonechat
Out to sea 4 Manx Shearwaters, 2 Gannet and a few Terns went past.
Also a probable Silver-studded Blue butterfly

Penros Coastal Park:
1 Black Guillemot
1 Mediterranean Gull
4 Bar-tailed Godwit feeding with numerous Curlew & Oystercatcher
1 Great Crested Grebe on sea
2 Sandwich Terns
1 Buzzard

R.Alaw estuary:
6 Little Egret
1 Kestrel



-- Edited by Steven Nelson on Wednesday 22nd of July 2020 08:32:32 PM

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Re-Tern to Wales. 12/7/2020

 

  With the Gateway to Wales having just been re-opened we thought that it was time to visit the principality and of course a visit to our favourite tern colony, Cemlyn Bay. I picked up Steve B and Kevin C at 7-15am and with a decent forecast of sunny periods we left Castleton. We have been doing this trip to Anglesey for many years and I think that it is always one of our most looked forward to trips. Our first stop was Holyhead Harbour and we were soon rewarded with a couple of Black Guillemots flying about, then an unusual sighting of a Mediterranean Gull swooping serenely around the harbour. It seemed strange that no ferries were in the port but they did eventually arrived from Ireland later as we saw them from our next stop at RSPB South Stack.

 

   As we arrived at South Stack the car park looked like a building site but the new centre is well on the way to being open. A scramble down a path to Ellins Tower for a spot of sea watching was interrupted with the sight and sound of 5 Chough. Such happy birds as they call and tumble around the sky in such a beautiful setting. A few passing Gannet`s and terns was all the sea had to offer but the cliffs had lots of auks to marvel at, always great to watch these birds. Also a single Shag was seen on the rocks below the lighthouse. A walk towards the old radio towers in search of some butterflies was not productive as the sun went in. A Hooded Crow was seen along with a few Stonechat, Skylark, and Linnet etc.

 

   At Cemlyn Bay the sound of the tern colony could be heard in the distance and as we parked up the sight was equally impressive. We had heard that the local tern colony on the nearby Skerries had been abandoned due to a Peregrine Falcon having taken up residence, also that a full time warden has not been there to dissuade predators like this. There appeared to be no warden on duty at Cemlyn Bay, but there were lots more terns than normal, had the Skerries birds taken up residence? Normally its lots of Sandwich Terns with Common Terns outnumbering the Arctic Tern but this year there were large numbers of Arctic Terns present. Less Black Headed Gulls was also strange, we tried to get some photos of the birds as they busily fished to feed their young chicks and enjoyed the sunshine.

 

   Next stop was the Little Tern colony at Gronant/Presthaven Sands, but as lockdown had been relaxed and lots of sunshine could only mean one thing, people enjoying the beach. The Little Terns could be seen from the viewing platform as they fished over the sea and the colony was well barb wired etc so lots of birds were present. As we left Gronant we headed down the old coast road and we ran into a really bad traffic jam that slowed us up, Steve B was very unimpressed!

 

Dave O.

 

 



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I read a North Wales report today to the effect that all the Scoters seem to have disappeared from the Colwyn Bay - Llandullas area. So the nocturnal migration across the NW of 1000s upon 1000s of birds may be nearly over.

Cheers John

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Worlds End:

Early morning start to see the Black Grouse lekking.
3 leks seen totalling at least 32 males giving great views of the action. No females seen though.

Also:
5 Red Grouse
2 Stonechat
A few Meadow Pipit in display flight
4 Mistle Thrush - 2 pairs
1 Dipper
4 Siskin
1 Great Spotted Woodpecker
a few Greylag and Canada Geese.
Bala Lake: 1 Great Northern Diver from car park at eastern end 1 Red-breasted Merganser

-- Edited by Steven Nelson on Saturday 14th of March 2020 09:23:01 PM

-- Edited by Steven Nelson on Saturday 14th of March 2020 09:24:02 PM

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Sunday 8th March Day trip to Anglesey. Menai Bridge, Church Island - Common Sandpiper Red Wharf Bay - Snow bunting (opposite Ship Inn) Fulmar - flying close to cliffs. Benllech - Velvet scoter, 8 Black gulliemots, 3 Red-throated divers (in bay). Moelfre - 6 Kittiwakes (on Ynys Moelfre) Razorbill, Gulliemots diving of point. Cemlyn - Whimbrel, 4 Purple sandpipers, 6 Grey plover, Red-throated Diver, Gannet ( out at sea), 80+ Golden plovers (on lagoon island) Llanfaethlu - 1st winter Rose-coloured starling (in private garden close to convenience store) Beddmanarch Bay - 40 Pale-bellied Brent geese Llyn Coron - 2 male and 1 female Goosander. An excellent variety of birds.

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Black Grouse lekking at Worlds End ca20 birds in two locations noted.


re previous two confusing comments made here which were made from my I phone which for some reason did not come out as it was written?

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Red Wharf Bay Snow Bunting Fulmar in nearby cliff Benllech bay Velvet Scoter eventually flew in to scope view Red throated diver Pale bellied brant 30 Black Guillemot 8 Llanfaethlu Rose coloured Starling showing well Penrhos coastal park Distant view of Slavonian Grebe Pale bellied Brent 40

-- Edited by Rob Smith on Saturday 7th of March 2020 07:30:20 PM

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Penmaenmawr promenade seafront


Flat calm made for good viewing albeit 2-300m out Great northern diver - 1 Red throated diver - 2 Red breasted merganser - 6 Great crested grebe - 30 Eider duck - 10 Common scoter - 100+ Harbour porpoise - 1 passed by for good measure

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RE: North Wales and Anglesey


Three hours relaxed birding late morning/early afternoon today in cold, fine and blustery weather. Of note :-

Kinmel Bay :-

Snow Bunting (2)
Red-throated Diver (1)
Wigeon (c.75)
Common Scoter (2)
Oystercatcher (c.30)

Little Orme :-

Guillemot (c.25)
Black Guillemot (1)
Shag (c.6)
Red-throated Diver (2)
Common Scoter (c.10)
Fulmar (2)


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Two Snow Buntings at close range in same area of Hortons Nose Rhyl as Doc Brewsters sighting of the 21st January. Female Scaup also showing well on Brickfield pond.



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Final update (see Leighton Moss post!)

On 19/1/20 I went to the Rhyl area with Carys and caught up with a couple of good birds in the short time we had there. First of all we called at Rhyl Brickfield Pond and very quickly found the female Scaup, a regular returning bird, on the pond there. Then the short nip up to Horton's Nose NR on the edge of Kinmel Bay. Here the 2 Snow Buntings showed really well, even when dogwalkers walked right by them. Also out on the beach were Sanderling, Dunlin and Ringed Plovers.



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Yes, nice to meet you again. Great viewing this morning and we couldnt miss with the photos really!

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2 Snow Buntings ( m + f) on beach by caravan park, Horton's Nose, Kinmel Bay performed well today. Nice to meet Mark Jarrett there as well.



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Originally posted today by Dave Ousey:

North Wales 8/12/2019

    Probably our final trip of 2019 had myself, Kevin C and Bob K heading for the North Wales coast in my most recent car, a Skoda Yeti! Which, up to now is certainly a car for all seasons and conditions. Our plan was to visit RSPB Conway to try to connect with one of the Firecrest`s that seem to winter on the reserve in most years. A chance meeting with a couple of birders from the Liverpool area on the way in, took us right to the correct area, the dipping pond with a bridge right across it. It was a fresh morning on the reserve along with a wind that might reduce our chances of seeing these tiny birds. After about an hour and with the local Robin population becoming very friendly, my two compatriots became restless and wandered away. What happened next? Yes you have guessed right, a Firecrest flew in for about a minute and gave decent views and promptly disappeared. I summoned my friends to the bridge but after a further 20 minutes no further sign of the bird! A warm up in the RSPB centre was called for before we headed off to try to find a Snow Bunting at Rhos on Sea.

   When we arrived at Rhos the tide was just beginning to go out but the wind was certainly picking up, a search of the beach area along with other birders revealed no sign of the Snow Bunting. We also had a look for any Purple Sandpipers on the rocks, again without success. After news that a male Surf Scoter had been seen from near the Rainbow Bridge at Old Colwyn, we headed up the road, parked up and began the walk (with the wind behind us) along the footbath to the bridge. We set up our scopes in what shelter we could find and began to search through the large flock of Common Scoters that winter along this coastline every year. The waves were making it quite difficult to pick out the Surf Scoter as all the sea ducks bobbed up and down. After about an hour of searching and with a large bank of rain coming in we decided to abandon the search. The walk back against the wind was brightened up by a spectacular rainbow appearing, but alas no crock of gold at the either end of it!

Dave O.



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