At least one Firecrest was performing well at the Rosemarket sewage treatment works this morning, with two Chiffchaffs and several Goldcrests. Elsewhere, at Newton Farm, there was a male Merlin and a flock of 15 Stock Doves.
Water levels down again, outflow flowing merrily. There were still 200-odd teal, plus smaller nos. of wigeon and mallard, a few shoveler and at least 3 pintail (2m 1f) on the remaining pools. Parties of snipe were flying about over the reedbed plus small numbers of lapwing and a solitary redshank. Around 500 golden plover on Kilpaison Burrows, mostly standing in a newly-ploughed dune field. They (and the lapwing) were regularly disturbed by the regular female marsh harrier, who was hunting up and down the northern edge of the reedbed. Brief view of a sparrowhawk on the N side - and I met Shaun from Cardiff, who had seen a (probably the regular) merlin. Also 2 heron and a little egret.
An Iceland gull at the dam this evening - appeared around 5.30'ish with a big influx of LBB's. Only other gull of note was a 2cy Mediterranean gull. 12-15 Commons gulls. A sizeable but frustrating roost as everything had its backside towards me facing into the stiff NW!. The 2 Peregrines where really getting in among the BH gulls tonight.
Four Mediterranean Gulls were the best on offer seen by Jon G at 4pm. Two with nice black hoods, one also with a red colour-ring. Two with partial hoods were presumably the two I saw c5pm onwards.
Most of the Herring and I guess any white-winged gulls were roosting on Cardigan Island. c1500 large gulls viewable on the land facing side of the island. 50 LBB Gulls and only a couple of GBB gulls in the estuary. 500 Common and 1500 Black-headed complete the picture.
150 Lawings on the mud, and only c100 Teal around the marsh and estuary.
Had a good couple of hours topside of Pantmaenog this morning in the hope of the GGS but drew a blank. With the on-going forestry work there's lots of promising looking areas. Lots of frog spawn (and frogs I imagine) in the pools and ditches, disturbed 2 herons in one ditch.
A bracing morning on the Corse. The high tides have blocked the outlet again so water levels back up at least for now.
Great views of the dark marsh harrier (haven't seen the other one for a while now) as it alternately hunted and soared over the reedbed, keeping ducks and waders on the move. It spiralled with a very pale buzzard for a while, making one half hearted lunge at the buzzard which took evasive action.
Lots of teal (>200) on the flooded area, plus mallard, 2 shoveler and a drake pintail. Further upstream a flock of 6-700 golden plover was constantly on the move as the harrier cruised past, plus smaller no's of lapwing. About 60-70 curlew, and 5 greylags. Masses of snipe, both on the fen meadow and flushed from the reedbed by the harrier.
A look around the estuary just after the very high tide found birding much as usual.
One roosting Little Egret between the Quay and the Webley. As the tide started dropping, the following flew to the Webley marsh - 2 Bar-tailed Godwits, 51 Oystercatchers, and more Wigeon to add to those already feeding...total 104 Wigeon.
A few Common and Black-headed Gulls started arriving, and a visit later this afternoon will hopefully see the estuary full of gulls - more than usual with this nw wind.
Small waders are non-existent and Rock Pipits are only in ones and twos..
From Clare Ryland: a ringtail Hen Harrier on 16th February on the B4329 just north of Rosebush Reservoir (after the junction with the B4313). Also a Woodcock on the drive of Clare's house this evening (between Fishguard & Dinas).
I do wonder how many Woodcock there are wintering in Pembrokeshire - since the turn of the year, whenever I am driving to and from work at dawn or dusk (on the A40 between Haverfordwest & Carmarthen) I see several Woodcock crossing the road - as a snapshot this would suggest they are widespread.
To complement our extensive BTO WeBS counts, details of other monitoring studies were posted this week. "A nightime six of the best "
on the Teifi RG blog discusses inland waders, particularly Woodcock. Including a link to a piece by Paddy on surveying at nightime for Woodcock and other inland feeding waders.