Sunday, 28 May 2017

Skokholm

No sign of the Bluethroat but an interesting Chiffchaff (on the Skok blog in a couple of minutes).

American GP

Still present around 5pm. A gentleman  who'd driven from Bexley Heath had located it way out off Musslewick, he had it mind to wait for the tide to push it up the beach, however looking at the weather now he's probably on his way back to Kent....

Star Spangled Leggy Lovely

The adult summer American Golden Plover still at the Gann early afternoon.  It was feeding on the mud c.300m upstream of the wooden boardwalk across the river on the west bank with a Grey Plover.  It allowed a fairly close approach (looking across the river) with a cautious approach. At 1.28pm they both flew downstream and out into the bay - by then the tide was well out.  Best to try and get the bird on a rising tide probably, say about 2 hours before high tide?  Big thanks to Derek for finding it - I'm struggling to think of a smarter wading that I have seen.  Begs the question if it is the same bird that stopped off at Angle Bay last spring?  2 consecutive spring records at sites quite close to each other after a very long gap back to our last record...




American Golden Plover

Still at the Gann at 625 this morning (Rob Jones). Go see this spangly beauty folks!!

Sent from my Sony Xperia™ smartphone

Saturday, 27 May 2017

American Golden Plover - The Gann





Thanks for the quick call Derek, and lucky I was nearby. By the time Pete H arrived the tide was full in and it had moved to the pebble bank on the other side of the stepping stones (SM813071) with the Oystercatchers and a Grey plover.

American Golden Plover at the Gann.

Took a late evening stroll to the Gann, scanned through the Dunlin / RP`s, then the Grey Plover & then......


Sometime ago, Dave was telling me about single "Golden Plovers" with big eye stripes - something crossed my mind (not the greatest of journeys I know!) - so I rang him & he went through the Collins guide with me on the phone & came to the conclusion that it was an AGP. I rang Brian who was at Marloes Mere, he turned up 5mins later & came to the same conclusion.
I must thank Dave & Brian for their help in confirming my suspicions about this big tick for me & a really good find for the Gann

Cattle Egret - Bosherston

Highlight of a day out down south was the Cattle Egret at Bosherston at 815am, flying around above the 8-arch bridge but didn't see which way it headed as foliage in the way.  Nice to hear both Reed and Cetti's Warblers at Castlemartin Corse, and a fine male Redstart at Blackpool Mill (with John Parker).

Skokholm

A cracking male Bluethroat was ringed this morning. It seems likely that it isn't a svecica but the jury is out on where it might have originated.


The Gann

The Dunlin / Ringed Plover flock still present, wheeling around displaced by the spring tide, also 2 (3?) Grey Plover still in Winter garb. Whimbrel calling.


Friday, 26 May 2017

Great White egret - Millin Pill


From Andy Bookless - This Great White Egret was feeding at Millin Pill between about 11.30 am and midday today, along with three Grey Heron, before it flew off in the direction of the Western Cleddau.

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Skokholm

Blue-headed Wagtail today along with a few common migrants.

Cattle egret, still Stackpole Court/Bosherston



The Cattle egret appeared at 7pm, in the same spot Richard describes. The attention of a couple of Crows shifted it from the very top branches to a somewhat lower less obvious spot.

The Gann

A flock of c35 mostly Dunlin - with a few RP's - 8 Whimbrel, 2 BH Gulls, 3 Little Egrets, 2 Herons & the long staying Teal.

Reds and Yellows

Wednesday sightings from David Meanwell - Three red kites together over Bower Farm Little Haven today at 1.30pm
Also spotted a pair of Yellowhammers on the verge at Lambston at 4.30pm

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Elegug Stacks - this evening


A glorious end to the day at Elegug Stacks where, with a large party of students from University of South Wales practicing their seabird ID, we watched  a feeding flock of several hundred gulls just offshore (various species, including a couple of hundred kittiwakes).

The kittiwakes in particular were clearly finding a good food source several cm below the surface, making numerous shallow plunges - often with just their wing-tips showing above the water surface.



It's not particularly unusual to see flocks of kittiwakes feeding just offshore here at this time of year - presumably they include Skomer birds, or perhaps are from or further afield? Quite a few of them were non-breeding 2nd calendar birds or older, including one that seemed to have more or less adult plumage yet no obvious black wing-tips or any black in the wings at all.

It's sad that the once thriving breeding population here (at one time 500-600 nesting pairs) is now down to no more than 3-4 pairs, with annual declines during the last couple of decades. The tiny remnant breeding population (the last one on the Pembs mainland coast) looks likely to finally go extinct this year!

On the stacks though, the auk population seems to be thriving. Several guillemots and razorbills were bringing in fish for their chicks this evening.


It was also nice to see a marsh fritillary butterfly not too far from the cliff edge here. With the good spell of warm sunny weather, its likely that there will be many more marsh frits on the wing here by the Bank Holiday weekend.


Tuesday, 23 May 2017

House Martins / Swifts

About 45 over St Brides bay this evening, the most I've seen for some time, years in fact. That got me thinking about Swifts, I've seen less & less of them over the past few years with only five so far this Spring, no doubt lots of factors impacting their  apparent decline.

Stackpole/Bosherston Cattle Egret

Yesterday's cattle egret was roosting this evening (I watched it 2015-45) in a large ash tree by the rushy bay opposite (slightly south of) the Boathouse hide - best observed from one of the stone fishing points S of the Boathouse. Point'n'shoot only but......
                                                          Location shot (white pinprick!)
It has been spending the days (probably for a while now) with cattle on Stackpole Home Farm. As it's a huge farm with 1000 head of dairy cattle it could be anywhere, viewing opportunities only from roads or tracks depending on where it is. Chris James the farmer observed it two weeks ago and took this picture as the bird was flying away

So a big thank-you to Strinda Davies and friend for my first UK cattle egret!

Cuckoos - St Dogmaels

This afternoon, while out working in my St Dogmaels garden, I thought I heard a Cuckoo.

Since we've got Song Thrushes in the area that think they're Water Rails, Greenshanks and Nuthatches, I was a bit sceptical, but a few seconds later two Cuckoos flew over from the south, one of them calling repeatedly, and headed across the Teifi estuary towards Ceredigion.

First garden tick in quite a long time!

Cattle Egret? Bosherston

This received today, sounds very interesting.

Good morning,

I wish to report an Egret sighting on the Eastern Arm of  Bosherston Lily Ponds late yesterday evening (Mon 22nd May) at approx. 9.30pm,  which may possibly have been a Cattle Egret.

Location: bird was viewed, by two people and through binoculars only, roosting high in tree opposite the hide below Stackpole Court (Boat House?), about a quarter  of the way along the  shore towards the Eight-Arch Bridge.

Description: clearly an Egret, with hunched posture, definite yellow bill, some warm buff colour on the chest and bulky, not streamlined, appearance to the top of head (no obvious crest). Not able to detect leg colour when bird was preening.  

My friend was able to film it on her cam-corder, albeit at considerable distance away. Even so, yellow bill is clearly evident.

Unable to phone the three people listed on the Pembs Bird Club site as no mobile reception where we are staying, at Stackpole. 

Regards,

Ms. Strinda Davies, Chair of Glamorgan Bird Club

Monday, 22 May 2017

Spotted Flycatcher - St Davids


Gupton Farm and Castlemartin Corse

My first painted lady and hummingbird hawk moth of the year.

Otherwise it's been a very quiet spring at the Corse - all the normal small birds but the site has been very dry. Grasshopper warbler singing today.