Friday, 29 August 2014
Third day on the trot at Kilpaison. This time a very strong SW wind howling in with an overcast sky pretty much precluded photograhy though I managed one shot of a Ringed Plover.
There were plenty of waders, although with 3, restless, groups, spread along the beach with the tide only just starting to drop they were difficult to count. There were certainly over 400 birds present and in one group I counted 62 Ringed Plover and in another 5 Turnstone and 6 Sanderling. The majority were Dunlin and a Curlew Sandpiper was also in amongst them - perhaps the same bird from Wednesday as it was similarly marked with a dark peach wash.
Over at Angle Harbour it was Med Gull City on the shingle spit with 33 birds the vast majority adults in winter plumage with one 2nd Winter and one juv. Two of the Meds were ringed - RP42 on a green ring and (I think) 3123 on a pale yellow ring. Also some 80 B H Gulls and one Common Gull. 4 Little Egrets were initially roosting in a tree before dropping down to the back of the harbour.
An impressive sea at Freshwater West but no waders on the beach.
Thursday, 28 August 2014
After heavy morning rain the sun shone. At Kilpaison fewer waders than yesterday and less variety - 95 Dunlin (with just one in summer plumage), 6 Sanderling, 15 Ringed Plover. Over on the north side of the bay about 50 Curlew were in the roost.
Wednesday, 27 August 2014
Eight Sandwich Tens flew out the estuary earlier in the day.
Late news - a second and different Yellow Wagtail at Mallard Pond on Monday night.
N.B. See Skokholm blog re Garganey there on 23 August
The conditions were, however, good for birding with plenty of small waders on the beach as the tide dropped - 200+ Dunlin, 100+ Ringed Plover (the majority juveniles in both species), 5 Turnstone, 1 Sanderling, 1 juv Knot and a juv Curlew Sandpiper which had a rather dark peach wash to the chest.
Of the larger waders there were 60 or so Oystercatchers and a few Curlew.
Shame it was so dull for photography but good to see a nice selection of waders at Kilpaison early in the autumn passage.
The juv Shelducks (finally 5) seem to have now left, the adults having left them a fortnight ago.
Tuesday, 26 August 2014
From Ed Hunter:
Group of 8 or so very large crane like birds, seen from moving car with no bins along new stretch of A477 around 445pm. Either landed nearr Red Roses or kept going towards Llanteg struggling in the wind.
Monday, 25 August 2014
Sunday, 24 August 2014
Saturday, 23 August 2014
On Wednesday (20/08/2014) I made my first crossing on the Stena Europe from Fishguard to Rosslare with Steve Rosser to survey cetaceans for Sea Trust. I had high hopes, lots of naive enthusiasm and couldn't take my eyes off the sea for the entire crossing. Unfortunately cetaceans were fairly thin on the ground with groups of Common Dolphins on the approach to Rosslare on the way out and close to Fishguard on the way back (the next day) plus a few Porpoises. We also saw two Grey Seals in-between Wales and Ireland. Seabirds were a little more exciting and highlights include at least one Great Shearwater (my first), a Sooty Shearwater, some big rafts of Manxies, four Bonxies and one Arctic Skua, lots of Common Terns, all of our breeding seabirds with young well out to sea (Guillemots, Razorbills, Puffins and Kittiwakes) and thirteen Dunlin flying east roughly at the halfway point. At the extreme ends there was a single Black Guillemot in Fishguard Harbour (but interestingly none at Rosslare) and two juv Med Gulls at Rosslare.
|Juv. Med Gull|
|Manxie over a flat sea|
|Raft of Manxies|
And finally a big note of congratulations to Dave Astins who managed to swim from Marloes Sands to Skokholm. An amazing feat in my book even on a calm day and it was a bit choppy, so well done Dave. Dave was raising money for the Wildlife trust of South and West Wales and you can still add to his fund raising by following this link.
Eddie Stubbings, Skomer Warden
A full report with more photos is on the ever excellent Skokholm Blog and there is still time to congratulate Dave by donating here