Saturday, 3 December 2016

Apologies for the lack of updates in recent days, unfortunately there had been little, if any at all, change in wildlife or events over the past days.

Whether they have been here for a while, due to their ability to blend in with the rocks at low tide extremely well, or are new arrivals in, a flock of 12 Purple Sandpipers were spotted as they whizzed around the mouth of Solfach before settling out of sight. The Curlew flock numbering 17 today, although there are mostly likely others around, roosted amongst the rocks along with 17 Oystercatchers, five Redshanks and 11 Turnstones. Bobbing in the surf just off shore were 20 Mallards, further out a reduced number of auks, 21 Guillemots and three Razorbills passed by, whilst the small gull flock consisting of an adult Mediterranean Gull, 151 Black-headed Gulls, two Common Gulls, four Herring Gulls, three Greater Black-backed Gulls and a single Kittiwake dabbled along the tide race.

The Pink-footed Geese seem to be making Bardsey their temporary home as they strategically work their way through the same three stubble fields each day, briefly taking a small tour of the island if they are spooked, only to return to the the same three small fields where the feeding must be adequate. The odd Water Rail is heard every now and then but nothing to the extent of sightings that were frequent a week or so ago, others may still be present however only one was heard squealing from the Withies.  Numbers of thrushes have decreased over the past days,  although some are still around, most notably Song Thrushes of which five were logged today, a Fieldfare moved over the Observatory along with ten Redwings and seven Blackbirds were recorded. Chough numbers have started to pick up and they are now regularly frequenting the mounds of seaweed teeming with invertebrates, although pretty stinky. The Common Buzzard is still lurking around the island and a Merlin stalking prey around the Narrows were raptors seen. Small scatterings of other birds were noted including a Meadow Pipit, four Rock Pipits, three Goldcrests,  a Blue Tit, three Chaffinches amongst the resident Wrens, Dunnocks and Robins.

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