Thursday, 8 December 2016

As the heavy rain, strong winds and fog that had rolled in the previous morning lifted the day brightened up and it was clear that at least a few migrants had arrived.

A number of large gulls gathered in the North West Fields, along with the eight Pink-footed Geese still resident, and smaller numbers of gulls around the Narrows, 31 Herring Gulls and nine Greater Black-baked Gulls being the totals.

The coupling of the incoming tide and the swell had pushed a lot of the birds up onto the grassy fields of the Narrow where they picked amongst the sodden grass and temporary flood pools a result of the deluge the night before. A mixed flock of 33 Curlews, 48 Oystercatchers and seven Redshanks were the bulk of the activity, although a Grey Heron passed over Henllwyn. Nearby nine Choughs, and a number of other corvids picked through the stagnant seaweed piles whilst below seven Turnstones feed close to the shoreline and four Rock Pipits were recorded. Grey Seals around the Narrows numbered 32 today, not high in comparison with counts here that can sometimes be a couple of hundred individuals, it was also pleasant to see the odd pup every now and then as we come to the end of our pupping season.

Still the odd un moulted Grey Seal pups in some of the bays, this one looking particularly content!
Overhead a noisy flock of 16 Fieldfares and a Redwing passed above the Observatory amongst a scattering of other thrushes including 12 Blackbirds, seven of which were in the Observatories front garden and five Song Thrushes dotted around the island. A long staying immature male Kestral moved through the Lowlands favouring perches on some of the houses, brief views of a Sparrowhawk and a Peregrine Falcon gliding over the island were the only raptors noted. A male Blackcap appeared later at the Observatory, sunning itself at the tops of the damsons, a Water Rail also pipped up momentarily, with another heard down in the Lowlands. Three Goldcrests were heard in various gardens and the Blue Tit and two Chaffinches were around Nant intermingled amongst the more common resident species, 16 Wrens, five Dunnocks and 14 Robins.

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