Saturday, 11 January 2014

January 8th 
After countless weeks of more or less constant strong winds, it was incredibly unusual to have day with absolutely no wind whatsoever. With the thundering background noise of crashing waves somewhat reduced, passerines such as Robins, Dunnocks and Blue Tits were able to make themselves heard, as they gave out small snippets of song. A small number of thrushes included two Song Thrushes and one Redwing, which were present along the mountainside to Nant; three Goldcrests continued to feed around the Plantation, and a flock of 250 Starlings almost became one fewer, when a Peregrine sliced through the flock. A Jackdaw was a rather unusual addition to the year list, feeding amongst the cows near Ty Capel.

January 9th
A bright day with a brisk north-west wind saw a small gathering of Kittiwakes off The Narrows, with four Black-headed Gulls feeding alongside them. A dead Fulmar was found washed up in Henllwyn. A Jackdaw continued to fly around the buildings, giving out a lonely barking call every now and then; the Hooded Crow lingered around The Narrows.

Kittiwakes continue to pass by the island
January 10th
A scattering of thrushes in the lowlands saw one Blackbird, one Redwing, and four Song Thrushes frequenting the soggy fields. Out to sea, 75 Kittiwakes were seen feeding off The Narrows, over much tamer seas, whilst 22 Purple Sandpipers were present on Carreg Yr Honwy.

The dead Fulmar which washed up in Henllwyn

January 11th
A very pleasant day's birding saw a few noteworthy birds appearing in glorious weather. A feeding flock of just over 100 Kittiwakes spent most of the day feeding between Carreg Yr Honwy and The Narrows. Amongst them, a single adult Mediterranean Gull, two Little Gulls, four Common Gulls and 36 Black-headed Gulls were seen. A total of 1850 Guillemots flew South in loose flocks between 0830 and 1000, whilst a flock of five Red-throated Divers flew South in the afternoon. In terms of passerines, the first Skylark of the year appeared on the North End, a Goldfinch flew over Ty Pellaf, three pairs of Stonechats were scattered through the Carreg Wetlands, and four Goldcrests were seen in the Plantation.

 One of the very smart Little Gulls- this first-winter bird was present alongside an adult
Mediterranean Gull

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