Monday, 24 April 2017

Belated bits and pieces from Sunday and the last few days

Made a morning trip to the Castlemartin coast on Sunday morning to record breeding choughs etc. All expected pairs have now settled in to usual expected breeding sites.

Wheatears were noted to be quite numerous with 50+ noted between Flimston Down and Linney Burrows. Several large, bright birds were probably of the Greenland race. There was also a very smart whinchat perched on coastal scrub near Bluckspool. The pale bleached-brown female merlin, noted a week or so ago, was still present in the the Bulliber Down area.

Later in the day at Stackpole, a garden warbler was in full song in the willows near the grassy bridge near Bosherston lake, providing reasonable views for a few minutes. Out on Stackpole warren it was nice to see a small mixed flock of finches in the maritime pines - including at least two redpolls, a few siskins and several goldfinches. Reed Warblers were in song at the lakes reedbed and later at Freshwater East marsh. Ravens were noted to have fledged at a couple of regular nest-sites - e.g. at Stackpole and at Trewent Point.

In the last week or so gannets have been very regularly performing their typical spectacular dives close in to the shore at various locations between Manorbier and Freshwater West, where there must have been plenty of fish around in the shallows. Small numbers of sandwich terns were also noted feeding alongside on occasions - e.g. five off Swanlake Bay and 6 off Broadhaven (south).
one of several adults feeding off Stackpole recently