Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Strumble Head - a short circuit before the rain set in

It's been some while since we had a walk around the Strumble area. Noting a lack of BirdTrack records in SM84 and SM94, we decided to have a look around the area this morning. We set off from the shelter, having first had a good chat there with Cliff Benson (as usual on the look-out for cetaceans etc). We commented on the good number of gannets feeding offshore, in typical close proximity to expected porpoises etc. As well as numerous auks moving offshore it was also nice to see at least 6 red-throated divers: 3 on the sea feeding and 3 flying south in the space of about 20 minutes.

A female bullfinch was feeding in an isolated patch of gorse down the coastal slope. Was this a local one we wondered, or one of the influx of winter immigrants? A very well-marked adult male peregrine flew passed us in lovely rainbow sunlight and shortly afterwards a male kestrel was hunting along the coast near Porthsychan. A lone chough was feeding in an expected location - hopefully its partner was somewhere in the area.

Song Thrushes seemed quite numerous along the coast and more so here than blackbirds. As we approached the farmyard near Tresinwen on our return leg c.100 or more chaffinches were feeding in a small weedy patch near the lane. Other winter birds included redwings and fieldfare.
A very obliging goldcrest was feeding on numerous spiders in the gorse
No particularly unusual birds were seen but it was a lovely walk non-the-less.