Friday, 19 December 2014

Ring-billed gull - Llys-y-fran

The Ring-billed gull looks like it's back for another year, among a massive roost of perhaps 5,000 gulls, maybe more. With everything on the water by 4.15pm. 12 Common gulls but couldn't pick out any Meds this evening. Possible candidate for an adult Yellow-leg, but light was going fast. Also 30 Redwing.
Earlier today: The Gann: 2 Little Egret, 5 Mute Swan (2 adult, 3 youngsters), 9 Little Grebe, 10 Turnstones, 5 Redshank, 6 Goldeneye (1m,5f) and a Brent Goose. Dale airfield: 1 Lapwing, a dozen Snipe and Peregrine sat out on the race circuit. Tufted duck on Marloes Mere. Cosheston Pill yesterday: 80 Black-tailed Godwits, c100 Dunlin, a Little Egret and 4 Little Grebe.


One adult Mediterranean gull among the black-headed gull flock on the Upper Eastern Arm (the large flock quite mobile between lake and farm) - just up from the Boat House Hide. I suppose there's a fair chance of finding a Med gull in any large BHG flock these days.....

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Castlemartin Corse Access

The National Trust Team at Stackpole have just announced some temporary access to Gupton Farm and Castlemartin Corse. Please see document here for details.

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Marloes Mere

Male Hen Harrier this morning, initially over the mere and then towards Martins Haven. A Chiffchaff in willows out from Britton Hide. Min16 Gadwall, 30 Wigeon. 12 Shoveler and 10 Teal. 15 Snipe. Family of Mute Swans (2 adults 2 youngsters). 30 Chaffinch in the field behind Britton Hide. With 200+ Linnet plus a couple of Goldfich towards Martins Haven and 12 Snipe in the rough set-a-side. c500 Lapwing near Trehill Farm. An early look at Llys-y-fran before the main gull roost had formed showed just 2 Mediterranean Gulls (both 2CY) and a single Common Gull.

Monday, 15 December 2014


From Colin Laugharne in Pembroke - I have a pair of blackcaps feeding on sunflower seeds.


From Peter Howe - Just back from working in my woods on Crow Hill, saw 3 imm swans trying to land and disappeared out of view, towards Fred Rees garage, when they past me calling more like Bewick's but unfortunately could not nail them, I wish I could have swapped the chainsaw for my bins! Despite searching at lunch time no sign all the way down to Fortunes Frolic.

Water Pipit

A Water Pipit was on the flooded campsite at Newgale this morning. Also the large mixed Golden Plover and Lapwing Flock still near the School/Ocean Haze end of St Davids.


At the Carew River this morning a Peregrine sat atop a tall tree then flew fast across the water scattering all before it and dive bombing a Buzzard on the way. Once the birds settled back down there were 47 Redshank, 4 Greenshank, 25 Curlew. The Buzzard sat in a tree calling whilst a Crow pecked at a bird carcas on the water's edge - perhaps a Peregrine kill.

Round at Radford Pill there were 35 Teal, 15 Wigeon, 27 Lapwing and 2 Little Egrets.

Golden Plover St Davids

Just some of a large flock Golden Plover using a field nearly opposite to Ocean Haze, St David's.  1,2 thousand or more at times - not all there all the time

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Blackbirds and crossbills

In response to Graham's post, of 21 blackbirds ringed at Llandilo since 18 November, only 7 were females. Will try and catch some more over the next few weeks to gain a larger sample size.

The first three crossbills of the autumn also seen there this week feeding on larch cones.

Blackbirds again

Two years ago I noted a preponderance of males among the Blackbirds seen during Dec - Jan in three kinds of habitat. Mainland ringing groups did not ring many Blackbirds during the relevant months so were unable to put the observations into a broader context.

 Recent observations suggest that the same thing is happening again in places I visit. It would be instructive if as many observers as possible could systematically note sex ratios of Blackbirds during the rest of December through to the end of January over a wider area of the county. May I look forward to a positive response?  

Saturday, 13 December 2014


Good numbers of gulls this evening with a very rough estimate of 5,000 in total, a good mix of LBB and BH with fewer Herring gulls. 4 Med Gulls (2 adults and 2 2cy). 6 Common gulls.


A lovely walk from Stackpole Court to Stackpole Quay and back via Stackpole Head in the glorious sunshine today.  Highlights were a Bittern in the reeds below Stackpole Court (thanks to Michael from Pembroke for putting me on to it), an adult Mediterranean Gull, 2 Chiffchaffs, and the Long-tailed Duck still below the eight-arch bridge.

On the cliffs there were 3 really pure looking Rock Doves, no sign of interference from local Feral Pigeons - worth seeing.

Lapwings East of St Davids

There were c2,000 lapwings in two flocks murmurating before dropping down onto fields just past Ocean Haze on the A487 east of St Davids this afternoon.

Castlemartin Corse

A quick look at the Corse mid afternoon. The two Marsh Harriers still present over the reed bed and a Peregrine flying over put up c.450 Lapwing from the south side of the Corse. Also 1 Buzzard, 2 Chough, 3 Stock Doves and 12 Curlew.

Small bird numbers seem to building up a little with 40 Reed Buntings, 60 Skylarks and 30 Greenfinches as well as a few Mipits.

Deer Park

An unremarkable walk round the Deer Park, but for a great spotted woodpecker on the electricity pole behind Sash's house. Must be the only tree-like object in a considerable radius.

Friday, 12 December 2014


A 1.5 hour seawatch this morning saw the following: 2 juv pomarine skuas, 5 red-throated divers, 4 great northern divers, 8 common scoter, 7 gannets, 108 kittiwakes and 390 auk sp. (more razorbills than yesterday but again mainly guillemots). No shearwaters today
On land of note - a merlin, a snipe, a reed bunting and 3 song thrush - plus all the winter 'regulars'


Pintail have to be my favourite duck - very elegant - so it was nice to see 5 (2 drakes, 3 ducks) at Radford Pill late this morning. Also there 40ish Lapwing, 30 Wigeon, 20 Teal and a few Redshank.

Round at the Carew River there were 7 Greenshank, 36 Redshank, 1 Knot, 1 Little Egret and 47 Curlew.