Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Castlemartin Range (Sunday 20th) and Pembs Bird List update

A belated entry.

Did final (and late) winter season WeBs counts at Frainslake/Bluckspool/Fresh West and Frainslake Millpond areas in the afternoon, in glorious warm sunshine. Pretty quiet on the migratory bird front, although two small parties of chiffchaffs (4-5 at the millpond willows and 3 in a single willow bush at a dune slack-pool near Bluckspool beach) were clearly migrants passing through and not over-wintering birds. They were avidly feeding on almost every small insect that moved.

Looked for wheatears across the vast expanse of short dune turf but surprisingly none found.

There were only a small number of oycs and curlews roosting at high tide but better numbers of corvids and raptors (probably attracted by high numbers of sheep and lambs in the area). I noted 6 buzzards, and not less than 35 ravens (latter all perched in various strategic locations in small and often quarrelsome huddles). Other birds of interest included kestrels (2) a peregrine, three water rails, and a jack snipe flushed near the millpond. At dusk, a merlin conveniently perched on a post - just in time to snatch a couple of quick photos with a small compact camera.

Updated Pembrokeshire Birds List:
Mike Young-Powell has kindly updated the annotated checklist on behalf of the Pembs Bird Group. This can be found by looking at the Report section on the Bird Group Blog site - using the link from this site.

Hope this will help everyone interested in researching the bird species recorded in the County and that it will also stimulate everyone to look for possible additional species this year too!

Bob (Chairman Pembs Bird Group)