Monday 28 May 2012

Strumble Head 28th May

A quick walk around the headland found just a sgl Spotted Fly by the Old Coastguards , a few Porpoises out at sea & four Common Blue butterflies.

Sunday 27 May 2012

Flagpoles 14.00 27th May

Quite a suprise as of late the Flagpoles have been very quiet but present today a Whimbrel calling constantly looking for others , a summer plumaged Turnstone and six summer plumaged Dunlin including one extremely tired individual which Bella could have picked up if she had wanted to. 


As the weather has been so good we decided to have a Barbeque yesterday evening.Over head there was a gathering of about 20 Swifts which is as big a number as i've had over the garden in years.  

Sunday 20 May 2012

Gwaun Valley

Another walk with Steve & the hounds , this time along the Gwaun above Sychbant parking on a tight corner near Llanerch Farm. Immediately had a Male Pied Flycatcher singing by the parking area who did the decent thing & showed himself then from the trail through the Wood at least 4 singing Wood Warbler , 2 Redstarts , 2 Marsh Tit , Nuthatch & Treecreeper. Bizarrely also had a Bat species , not big enough for a Noctule but bigger than a Pip ? A female Redstart was seen on the way back down quite near to Sychbant carpark. 

Strumble (20 May 12)

3 Jay in Porthsychan valley this morning.  Also around the head today a Lesser Whitethroat, Cuckoo, 5 Spotted Flycatchers, 4 pairs of Lesser Redpoll, lots of Sedge Warblers, Whitethroats, Blackcaps, Chiffchaffs and Willow Warblers.  Hirundine passage much reduced compared to yesterday.

Tresinwen & Strumble (19 May 12) [Bee-eater !!!]

Made a schoolboy error this morning - I went for a walk without my phone or camera!

I decided to go on my normal circuit - Tresinwen, down Porthsychan, coast path to old Coastguards then back down the road to Tresinwen.  The previous day had recorded over 10 Golden Orioles on the Scillies and a few Woodchat Shrikes had appeared in the SW.  I set out hoping to find one of these.  I left my gear behind as it was dull and cloudy and not ideal photography weather.

Found lots of Whitethroats and Sedge Warblers and noted a passage of hundreds of hirundines.

By the time I got to the coast below the old coastguards the hirundine passage was impressive to say the least.  I decided to stop and scan the passage hoping to find something unusual.  As I stood there I heard a "quip" "quip" "quip" calling right above me and instantly knew it to be a Bee-eater.  I looked up and there it was gliding over me heading out to sea.  Time - 1130.

I followed it with my binoculars absolutely chuffed to have found a Bee-eater - my first for Pembs.  I followed it until it was a tiny dot way out to sea heading NE.  (Surprisingly I could still hear it call).  When it was right on the edge of visibility it turned and started heading back towards Strumble.  It came ashore somewhere above Porthsychan and continued inland at which time I panicked......I might be able to get this on my garden list!!!

I ran to the top of the old coastguard hill in time to see it fly over my house but I then lost it to view.  A few minutes scanning I could not relocate it.

I started to walk back towards the house over the fields below the coastguards and a quick scan half way across the field I spotted the Bee-eater again sitting on the roadside wires just where the permissive path re-joins the road.  Again I sprinted across the field, down the track and then down the road back to the house.  I grabbed my camera gear and phone and dropped my jumper and roll neck (sweating a lot now!).  A quick panic text to Adrian.

Remarkably when I ran back up the road the bird had not moved.  I grabbed some quick shots and then proceeded to try to get better pics.  With the dull white sky I struggled to get the bird on the wires with land as a backdrop.

I phoned the bird in and continued to watch it.  It called almost continuously.  Twice it flew out of view back out to the NE as if it was leaving and then a few minutes later was back on the wires as if it had never left.  It ranged from Tresinwen to the end of the roadside wires.  Last seen at 1220.

Not a bad garden list tick!!!

Saturday 19 May 2012

Goodwick Moor

Had a walk around the moor with Steve B & the hounds , plenty of Sedges now & 3 singing Reed Warblers new in. Hope they hang on to breed , will be an increase on recent years. Of a more sinister note , a Jay methodically working it's way through the reedbed looking for supper.  

Tuesday 15 May 2012

Strumble Head 18.00 - 19.00 15th May

Wind: N force 2

Manx Shearwater - 100's.
Fulmar - Only 1 seen.
Gannet - Quite a few small groups fishing above Porpoises.
Bonxie - 1.
Kittiwakes - Good no's passing.
Auks - Mostly Razorbills but a few Gillies.

Porpoise - Showing reasonably well.

Monday 14 May 2012

It's how they get their name !

One of the local ' domesticus ' population ran out of luck on the lawn this morning.

Around & About.

A short drive with Steve B started at Abereiddy where we had up to 10 Whimbrel & a strange looking presumably immature Buzzard lurking around the reedbed.Then up to Strumble where we had a few Wheatears & the seemingly endless passage of hirundines was still in motion. We wondered how long you would have to sit there before you had that Red Rumped! Not much happening out to sea apart from quite a good number of porpoises feeding below a group of Gannets.In the garden the Siskins are still emptying the nyjer seed feeder as quick as i can fill it.    

Sunday 13 May 2012

Pen Anglas

Pen Anglas,this morning the highlight for me was at least 8 Bottle-nosed Dolphin (one being a calf), feeding, leaping general enjoying life. Birdwise there were 10 Redpolls,4 Swifts a pair of Wheatears,50+ House Martins,3 Sand Martins and many Swallows passing through also there was a fly over Stock Dove.
In the harbour a Black Guillemot and a Curlew

Monday 7 May 2012

Pen Anglas

Pen Anglas has been fairly quiet the last few days the weather has not helped matters.
Yesterday 1 Wheatear,2 Redpolls,1 Siskin,1 Swift a couple of Grasshopper Warblers reeling and several Whitethroats are now present.
Today 7 Wheatears,1 Redpoll,2 Swifts and a Sedge Warbler.

Strumble Head 15.45 - 17.15

Wind SSW 4

Whimbrel - 5 ( East )
Bar Tailed Godwit - 18
Puffin - 2

Hundreds of Manxies now passing.

At Flagpoles on return through Goodwick , 1 Whimbrel , 2 Turnstones.

Tresinwen (07 May 12)

2 Spotted Flycatchers back in the garden - 15 days late compared to last year!  These NE winds have really delayed things this year.  The brief respite yesterday and the light SW winds today seem to be helping birds move through finally.

2 Siskins in the garden early morning and 2 Lesser Redpoll this afternoon.  Also Sedge Warbler singing behind the pond and at least 2 Blackcaps.  Good numbers of Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs around and still lots of hirundines passing through.  2 Mistle Thrush passed through late afternoon.

Sunday 6 May 2012

Tresinwen & Strumble (06 May 12)

2 Lesser Redpoll in the garden this afternoon. 

A walk around the headland this afternoon showed that Adrian's passage of hirundines had not abated.  Swallows with a few House Martins and Sand Martins were streaming through.  Despite a lot of effort I could not find anything unusual amongst them.

Also noticeable this afternoon was the significant number of Linnets on territory.  I have always known Strumble to be good for Linnets but this year is remarkable.  Strumble is by far the best place in the UK I have found for Linnets!  (They were singing from almost every gorse bush).

Goodwick (06 May 12)

23 Whimbrel, 1 Bar Tailed Godwit, 5 Turnstone and a Common Sandpiper at Goodwick this morning over high tide.  15 Whimbrel seen to fly off strongly up the valley towards Letterston.

Strumble Head

A walk around the head this morning from the Old Coastguards point to the stile at Richards Valley gave a total of 13 Wheatears , one male of the Greenland variety & a constant passage of hirundines which must have numbered hundreds. Mainly Swallows but there were a few House Martins & 2 Sand Martins amongst them.The male Kestrel is still around as well.  As expected in the east biased wind very little out to sea.

Saturday 5 May 2012

Tresinwen & Goodwick (05 May 12)

8 Whimbrel on the grass opposite the flagpoles car park both this morning and this evening.

Lesser Whitethroat singing at top of Porthsychan valley.  Lots of Sedge Warblers and Whitethroats back on territory but I am still trying to find my first Grasshopper Warbler.  Wind direction tomorrow supposed to change to SE rather than NE so maybe tomorrow?

Flagpoles 16.30 5th May

Quite a few passage waders present , 20 Whimbrel , 2 Barwits , a handful of Turnstones with a few in Summer Plumage & the usual resident Oystercatchers. A couple of Wheatears on the grass at the Ocean Lab end. 

Friday 4 May 2012

Tresinwen (04 May 12)

At least 3 Whimbrel calling from fields around the house at 11:30pm

Wednesday 2 May 2012

Goodwick Moor

A quick yomp around the Moor found all the usual suspects & a Whitethroat by the gate which was my first for the year. The Mute Swan has now relocated from the Moor to the Flagpoles. 

Tuesday 1 May 2012

Black kite !

No , not a flock of them the pics from India. Had a look for it this morning on way to work as it was close by but the weather was not condusive to seeing raptors. more success on the way back when i bumped into Clive Jones from Llanelli lurking around the Priskilly Golf Club turn.Didn't see the bird but had a nice chat with CJ & learned later that the bird showed up not long after i left ,but given the two options would still have gone for the chat with CJ.

The reason i left was to meet Carole at the Flagpoles where although no Blackwit or Brent present there was a Mute Swan on the Moor side of the road getting back the one i missed a few weeks ago!

Pic from 2006 by Jon Green.

Fishguard Harbour

From Fishguard Fort this morning 10 Swifts and a male Wheatear over the sea and heading north over a 100 Swallows in 15 minutes,later around the harbour a Pale-bellied Brent Goose by the Ocean Lab,a summer plumaged Black-tailed Godwit by the flagpoles and 2 Common Sandpipers at Lower Town.