Wednesday, 5 February 2014

February 2nd

The stormy conditions continued, although a brighter day made for pleasant birding conditions. The highlight of the day came in the form of a lovely adult Glaucous Gull, which flew south past Solfach in the late afternoon. This is the second record of the year, and only the second record of an adult since 2006. In other news, a Great Northern Diver landed to the south of Carreg Yr Honwy, 600 Guillemots past the coast, and a Whimbrel joined the usual Curlews at high tide.

The rather slender adult Glaucous Gull, in comparison to a juvenile Herring Gull (bottom right)
Some more shots of the adult Glaucous Gull. There were no records of Glaucous Gull on the island last year, although at least three in 2012

February 3rd

Gale force winds from the south east once again churned the sea into a boiling turmoil of white water, huge rolling waves and foam. A large gathering of gulls took place at high tide, with birds feeding on the seaweed and other debris that had been thrown up onto the side of Henllwyn. A total of 215 Herring Gulls were noted, along with five Common Gulls, seven Great Black-backed Gulls and four Lesser Black-backed Gulls. Waders were sheltering behind banks and gorse bushes on The Narrows, with counts including 90 Oystercatchers and 11 Turnstones.

Huge waves rolled in from the Irish sea, some of which were spectacular to watch! 
The lack of any rocky shore at high tide forced many waders to the grassy fields of The Narrows. These Oystercatchers chose to shelter behind a small clump of gorse bushes 

February 4th 

Yet another stormy day was brightened up by the finding of a very smart Lapland Bunting on The Narrows. The bird was feeding amongst a small foraging flock of 31 Rock Pipits, which were present along the top bank of Henllwyn. 2013 was a very poor year for this species, and so it is nice to already have had one in 2014. In other news, 57 Kittiwakes were seen feeding off The Narrows and 11 Common Scoters flew South.

The very handsome Lapland Bunting was getting blown around by the strong wind
Some more images of the Lapland Bunting, as it fed amongst the seaweed and pebbles above Henllwyn. This bird is the earliest record for at least five years.

February 5th

A day of gale-force south-east winds and consequently monstrous seas saw a smaller selection of avian wildlife about the island. However, a count of 140 Oystercatchers at high tide is the highest for at least two years, and a small selection of other waders amounted to: 11 Purple Sandpipers, 18 Redshanks and 25 Turnstones. Singles of Redwing and Song Thrush were seen in the wetlands.

1 comment:

  1. HI Ben What great shots and good to see a Glaucous Gull. Boy those seas are something else and you got a wonderful shot of that large wave. Love the Lapwing Bunting shots