Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Bizarre Magpie

From Jerry Moore - This is the bird that was reported as a rosy-breasted starling near St Davids.
At first I saw it in flight against the light and it appeared to be glowing red all over! I thought I must have been hallucinating.
When I finally got to see it properly I could see it was basically a juvenile magpie with all the white feathers coloured pink. You can also see in the photograph the blue irridescence in the ?secondaries (is that correct?) but I suspect most of its other feathers are irridescing red, as I observed when I first saw it. Anyway, it was a spectacular creature and stunningly beautiful.
Many thanks to Gail Lloyd for allowing me access to her garden!
A colony of sand martins at Freshwater West below the seaweed drying hut and a pair of swallows prospecting in a small cave nearby.

Cliff Nesting Oyks

From Steve Jarvis - I just read the surprising post on high level Oyster Catchers at Stack Rocks. On the same day near Penberi I witnessed 2 aggressive Ravens on the cliffs being dive bombed by high speed Oyster Catchers. Later Fulmar and Chough joined in and a Greater Black Backed arrived. This was on a fairly vertical cliff face. The dumpy Oyster Catchers in vertical free fall was quite a sight, and they were also presumably cliff face nesting.

Monday, 30 May 2016

Oystercatchers near Stack Rocks

Generally fairly quiet in S Pembs at the moment.  However, I noticed a pair of Oystercatchers seemingly nesting high on a cliff-ledge near Stack Rocks the other day.  I know that the auk chicks take a blind leap of faith to get off their ledges, will Oystercatcher chicks do the same thing?  They are about 5m from the top of the cliff, so it is a long way down.  Time will tell, if they survive predation by gulls of course....

Honey Buzzard

One was over Strumble Head today.

Sunday, 29 May 2016


 A 1cy Med Gull (I think!) on the low tide, never seen one at this time of year so wasn`t too certain -  in some head positions/ light -  just a hint of a mask. Any suggestions anyone?
8 Dunlin, 5 Ringed Plover & the Lesser Whitethroat still singing.

Between Grassholm and The Smalls

We took advantage of yesterday's calm seas to visit Skokholm and then head out to Grassholm and the Smalls. Around 3 miles East of the Smalls we came on a large area of oily-calm water where the bottom rises up from c.200ft deep to around 100ft. As well as constant Gannet action, and flocks of Manx Shearwaters that glided in and out, a real highlight was the astonishing number of Storm Petrels feeding. At one stage I had six in the binoculars at once, and a scan around the boat gave a count of 20-30 in a small area: a fantastic sight.
On the Smalls at low tide there were around 150 Kittiwakes roosting; later on in the season we have recorded larger numbers, apparently moulting here.

Rose Coloured Starling

I had a phone call from David Lloyd of Felyn Isaf (The Old Bishops Mill) in the Merry Vale valley St Davids SM 743 251 regarding two Rosy starlings on his lawn on Friday with one still on and off yesterday it seems to be flying between the mill and Lower moor St Davids his discription seems spot on.

Saturday, 28 May 2016


Turtle Dove today.

Marloes Mere

The Pair of Garganey showing some chemistry, Mallard style - the female being chased around by the male....
1 Grey Plover tracking East, dropping down somewhere between Marloes farm & the previously derelict farm.

Friday, 27 May 2016


Pair of Ringed plover and dozen Dunlin. 2 Whimbrel. 8 Sandwich terns (2 with rings). Earlier at Marloes: Drake Teal, 2 drake Shovelers. Mallard and 10 ducklings. The pen Swan got off the nest and had a swim around but screened by rushes. Marsh harrier recorded in notebook earlier in week.


A shrike double bill yesterday with Red-backed and Woodchat both in North Valley. Red-backed still present this morning and singing! See recent sightings tab on blog for details and photos.

Thursday, 26 May 2016


No sign of White Winged Black at 8 o'clock this evening met Tobby there who had also checked Ivors pond but no sign.

WW Tern Penberi

I received a phone call from David Aspden to report what he thought was a White-winged Black Tern at Penberi and sure enough when I went to check it out so it was indeed, a summer-plumaged White-winger. I quickly got out the news.  Well done David and thanks for the call. A beautiful bird but difficult to photograph.

White-winged Black Tern @ Penberi

I will leave Mike to tell the story and for him & others to post better pics, but here are my best efforts heavily cropped....what a bird!  No. 291 for Pembrokeshire for me....happy days.  Brian likes bulls it seems.

White Winged Black Tern - Penberry Res. St.David's

Just got in after seeing it & doing a few other things. Still present & showing well when I left at approx. 4.15 p.m. Suprised it hasn't been posted already.
Will be much better pictures from those who had better camera than I have.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

St Davids Hd am

Rather quiet again, just one Spotted Flycatcher. 3 Sanderlings were on Whitesands Beach along with a Ringed Plover which appeared small and dark etc though difficult with a singleton but given the company, time and numbers elsewhere in the Country almost certainly a Tundra Ringed Plover.


A single Drake flying around this morning at Marloes Mere. Lesser Whitethroat singing at the Gann last night, flying between the car park & the old lime kilns opposite.