Tuesday, 28 September 2021

Yellow Wagtail at Porthclais

From John Shrouder: Yesterday, Monday 27th September, just within the locked main gates of St Davids sewage works, in bright sunshine at close range, a yellow wagtail perched on a shed roof. A few minutes later it flew calling and heading South down the Porth Clais valley. Previous records suggest this is a rather late September sighting. Earlier, at the same site, a kestrel pair circling overhead.

Grey Plover

 A Grey plover at Goodwick yesterday - a distant and cropped photo.  Internet difficult last night so posting today

Monday, 27 September 2021

Strumble Head

Not big numbers but a 4 Skua day is always nice. 5 Arctic skua (2 pale, 2 dark, juv), 3 Pomarine skua (2 adult, juv), 2 Bonxie and 2 juv Long tailed skua

Sunday, 26 September 2021

Gann & Dale airfield

From Graham Brace: 

Hi folks...

Following on from Merv Hopkins's post yesterday, today's foray proved more successful. We met Derek and the Dogs at the Gann carpark and he gave us the lowdown on Dotterel up at the airfield.

Before heading up there we had a walk along the path. There were numerous ringed plover and dunlin on the beach feeding along the tideline (high tide), a wheatear posed on the boulders and several rock pipits flitted to and fro along the beach. On the lagoons were 3 cormorants, 3 dabchicks, a small group of 5 teal, 2 greenshanks and two groups of blackwits (10 and 8) along with an assortment of black headed and herring gulls. A group of around 10 redshank flew in a disappeared behind one of the islands. Also present were 3 little egrets, 2 of which remained atop the trees behind the lagoon. A fine male kestrel first seen hovering above the far end of the lagoon flew off in the direction of Crabhall before reappearing moments later in the distance giving chase (unsuccessfully) to a small unidentified songbird. A single Med gull was on the beach before heading out over the sea.

On up to the airfield where conditions were extremely blustery. We walked down to the stony field to look for the elusive Dotterel and soon discovered it was akin to looking for a needle in a haystack! However, after walking halfway across the field Merv looked back and spotted movement a 100 yards behind us. Sure enough, there it was. It was very obliging indeed and we got to within 20 yards of it without it showing any fear of us at all. A first for both of us! Other birds present included a large flock of goldfinches, 2 chough, a single wheatear and pied wagtail and a smattering of carrion crows.


From Phil Baber and Pam Buckle:

30+ Swallows hanging around lakes & beach until dusk. Kingfisher heard twice.
1 Sparrowhawk over beach. A few Rock Pipit.
2 Raven.
13 Chough had built to a flock of c.25 nearer dusk on slopes above the beach. (Some fine aerobatic displays and really close views.)

Earlier at Grove Hill, Pembroke a Red Kite was sharing a thermal with a Buzzard. And another Red kite was seen along the A477 near Jordanston.


From Merv Hopkins on Sat 25th,

I have paid two visits to the Airfield this week, Wednesday and today and alas have missed the Dotterel both times. I am going again tomorrow morning with Graham Brace so if anyone can give me a clue how or where I should concentrate my attention I will be most grateful. I walked the three main runways and through the stone field where I did see eight chough feeding, lots of meadow Pippet, a few wheatear and large flocks of Linnet but a Dotterel would be a first tor me.
If anyone is about tomorrow (Sun) we’ll be at the Gann around 9 ish and then on to the Airfield.
Merv Hopkins

Saturday, 25 September 2021

Bird Group Strumble Seawatch Event

25/09/21 Time: 10.00 - 13.00

Weather: Overcast mostly
Wind: S - SSW 3
Common Scoter - 26 ( 6 Females )
Red Throated Diver - 1 ( Summer plumage )
Dunlin - 4
Arctic Skua - 6 ( 1 Pale, 5 Dark )
Bonxie - 1
Mediterranean Gull - 2 ( Ad & Juv )
Sandwich Tern - 4
Porpoises showing fairly well
Risso's Dolphin - Approximately 10+ showing throughout watch, some very close.
Ocean Sunfish - 1
Thanks to all who attended.
Adrian Rogers & Clive Hurford


Still at Dale Airfield this afternoon

Haverfordwest migrants

Interesting bit of movement this morning, suppose the mist drove birds to ground. Crowhill area seeing large increase in blackbird and robin numbers, new birds being 4 mistle thrush, skylarks and mippits  passing over head hirundines using the river to navigate south and 7 jays from the west heading east.


Surprised to hear an Oystercatcher over my Haverfordwest home this morning. Plenty of Alba Wagtails, and a few Grey Wagtails too. 

Yesterday in School, a pristine White Wagtail was nice to see.

Toby Middlemist

P.S: I don't think the GWE has moved on, just no one has tried looking for it.

Friday, 24 September 2021

Dotterel, Dale airfield


One of the Juvenile Dotterel, still on the airfield early evening. Had about 30 minutes watching it chasing crane fly and rooting out worms before the mist rolled in. 7 Chough (5,2). 3 Wheatear. 200+ Linnet and c50 Meadow pipits. A Willow warbler and a Chiffchaff on the track up. A good look around a very misty Martin's Haven and the Deer Park, single Chiffchaff in the valley, a Whinchat on the Deer Park (been a good autumn for these) and a couple of flocks of juvenile Goldfinch on the ragwort heads added a little bit of colour to the greyness.

That Serbian Mediterranean Gull

Finally (better late than never) had details back of the red colour-ringed Mediterranean Gull Y168 present at the Gann from 24/12/2020 to 11/04/2021 (I recorded it 7 times during that period).

It was ringed at Palićko jezero (46° 4'29.80"N 19°43'6.54"E) on 17/06/2020, and in a straight line it travelled 1,916km to get here.  Mind blowing stuff!

Here is a photo of it, taken on 07/02/2021, not looking best pleased with life in Pembrokeshire....

Kilpaison, Castlemartin Corse

 Very few small waders mid morning at Kilpaison with the tide dropping - a grand total of 3 Dunlin. Over at Sawdern Point it looked like there was a good number of Curlew and Oystercatchers and a Little Egret.

Out in the bay plenty of Duck with 524 Wigeon, 48 Mallard and 6 Pintail. The 2 Brent Geese were also present. A lone Black Tailed Godwit flew in to the shore line and 2 more Little Egrets were on the South side of the bay.

Castlemartin Corse was also very quiet with no birds on the water in front of the reed  bed by the hide. An unusual sighting was a Grey Squirrel and a Great Spotted Woodpecker on adjacent fence posts by Starmans Hall.

Thursday, 23 September 2021


 From Toby Middlemist- Three Mediterranean Gulls, plenty of alba wagtail over throughout the day along with 2 Grey Wags in School (Haverfordwest High) today.


 As I stepped out of the car at Carew  Castle car park this morning 2 Sparrowhawks cruised over. On the freshly ploughed field next to the car park an impressive 53 Alba Wagtails, the majority looking like White Wags, though difficult to be sure without a scope and as they bobbed up and down in the furrows.

Round at the Mill a Red Kite was flying over the Carew River.

Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Angle Bay this evening

Along with Mike Davey, we noted a typical variety of waders feeding on the shore at the Rhoscrowther/Kilpaison end on the rising tide. These included 100+ curlews and similar numbers of oystercatchers - all headed over to their roosts on the Sawdern Point side of the bay an hour or two before high tide. 

Smaller waders included at least 20 ringed plovers and 20-30 dunlin. One of the ringed plovers was colour-ringed but, frustratingly, it and all but two of the rp's (both unringed), flew off with most of the dunlin - they all appeared to be heading towards Freshwater West. A single knot flew across in front of us and eventually landed with the other waders at one of the Sawdern Point roost locations. 

The wigeon flock had risen considerably since the weekend, with at least 500+ just offshore. We noted at least 4-5 pintails (all immature/female types); there could have been more but many of the offshore ducks were some distance away. The mute swan flock had also increased to 16. It was nice to see our first two pale bellied Brent Geese of the autumn - no doubt others will be arriving soon. 

Martin's Haven / Marloes Mere

A steady passage of hirundines this morning over Martin's Haven, 2 Whinchat were the highlight of a walk there and over to Marloes Mere.  Over at the mere, a/the juvenile Marsh Harrier showed nicely during a passing shower.

Swallows, Haverfordwest

From Toby Middlemist. An impressive 1283 Swallow flew south-east over Old Mill Grounds in an hour on Sunday morning. Also 6 Grey Wagtail (over), 4 Bullfinch, the Dippers, Almost 50 Robin, a Sedge, and 12 Willow Warblers, 16 Chiffchaff, 30 House Martin, 20 Sand Martin, 2 Kingfisher, 2 Buzzard, a Red Kite and a Sparrowhawk, and a Cormorant south (Migrant crossing overland?). 

Castlemartin Corse

The Wood Sandpiper is still there (or should that be back there? - I did wonder if Toby's bird yesterday could possibly be the same one, Kilpaison being a short hop over the Angle road, Sawdern Point 3.5km  from the hide on the Corse!). Anyway - it was at the eastern end of the flooded area which currently stretches some 200m inland from the hide. This time, good views of it in flight, including pale underwing and more elongated appearance with projecting feet. 

This is also where most of the ducks and snipe hang out - well out of sight of the hide, needless to say. To view this area, you have to decide which side of the hedge/ditch to creep along, wellies essential, and it's really impossible to avoid disturbing the ducks. Today I chose the north side of the ditch. I did manage some shots of a migrant hawker Aeshna mixta which was patrolling the edge of the water.