Thursday, 20 July 2017

Mervyn's Red-rumped Swallow

Am I right in thinking that the Red-rumped Swallow is a county first?  I can't find any previous records.  What a find for Mervyn.

New Quay

I spent most of the morning seawatching from the fish factory.  Much as I enjoyed watching the thousands of Manx Shearwaters and hundreds of Gannets and Kittiwakes I was hoping for something different.
Only a few auks around, mostly Guillemots, plus the odd Fulmar and occasional glimpses of Bottle-nosed Dolphins.
In the end I had to make do with 70 Common Scoter (67 south, 3 north), six Whimbrel and a single Sandwich Tern passing.

Med Gulls at Llanon

The Med Gull numbers at Llanon continue to rise. I had a count of 445 this morning, but I imagine there were more there than that. There were a fair few colour ringed individuals there but I wasn't close enough to read any of them unfortunately. There was also a cracking Black-tailed Godwit on one of the stubble fields.
Edward O'Connor

Meanwhile, back at Llanina

...not a lot was happening (Wednesday a.m.19/7/17). The usual mob of around 200 gulls were loitering between dog attacks. About 150 Herring G, 30 Black Headed G, 3 GBBG , and 5 adult Med Gulls - the first I have seen there since March. Also on shore were Oystercatcher (7) (no other waders) Cormorant,  Rock Pipit, C. Crow, House sparrow. 

All rather quiet offshore: a few Gannets and an occasional small (5-20) group of Shearwaters a long way out,  and the steady stream of auks to and from New Quay cliffs, seen until recently, was noticeably absent.  However, a Great Crested Grebe then did an elegant circuit of the bay, settled for short while, then headed north east up the coast  - a pleasant  surprise. 

There really wasn't much to count (apart from one Dolphin and one seal which didn't take long ) so resorted to counting lobster pots. In the sea area between the east end of Cei Bach and New Quay Head I could see 91.  I have no idea what  a sustainable number is, but seems rather a lot?

Richard Williams

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

More from Ynyslas

At a dull and drizzly Ynyslas  this afternoon Chris turned up a decent selection including Whimbrel and an early Greenshank to the east of the Leri.
Also on the estuary were a Common Sandpiper, four Sandwich Terns, 52 Cormorants, a juvenile Peregrine and at least 140 hirundines.
The King Eider was still in residence and the ploughed field held three Med Gulls.

Chris Bird

Red-rumped Swallow

About 15mins ago I had a Red-rumped Swallow land on a piece of garden furniture about 10 ft away from me sitting in the house having dinner, as I said "look at that" it flew of towards Bob's house showing its pale pink rump.  I dashed outside sans bins and couldn't locate it again

Yellow-legged Gull + returning migrants

The scrub around Ynyslas has been producing decent numbers of returning Willow Warblers recently as well as 2 Blackcaps and a juvenile Redstart. A Great Spotted Woodpecker flying north over the dunes at Ynyslas the other day was an odd occurrence. 
The ploughed field at Ynys Tachwedd has been producing good numbers of birds, highlights including: 4 Common Gulls, regular Med Gulls, a juv. Wheatear, a juv. Whinchat and a Stock Dove. 
Yesterday evening a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull was hanging around a sandbank in the estuary with a mixture of other large gulls.  
This morning a large cumbersome Common Snipe that flushed from around the small tidal pool near the Ynyslas boatyard had the heart racing for a split second before the bird banked and showed a nice white belly and paleish underwings...panic over, probably just a tired migrant.

Edward O'Connor

Castle Point this morning

A family party of eight Goosanders were on the sea off Constitution Hill.  Manx Shearwaters moving north at ca700 per hour, mostly close in but I couldn't pick out anything among them.  A party of 30 Common Scoter went south.
Just single Redshank and Ringed Plover on the rocks, then a Whimbrel flew in, rested briefly, then continued northwards.
Two Med Gulls on College rocks, then later there were three on Blaendolau fields, with 48 Black-headed.

Unusual movements

A feeding flock of about 60 House Martins has just moved north over the village, accompanied by two Swifts.
Yesterday evening at least 250 large gulls, mostly Herring, flew over in about an hour, heading for the coast.

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Foel Fawr

Corvids and Foel Fawr - they go together like the sea and sand.
Or Gin and Tonic perhaps!