News archive

February 2012

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Male lapwing in breeding habitat

Play misty for me !

Our small group travelled across North Wales to find an unusually calm day by the sea although rather misty. Near to us on the beach feeding were Knot, Turnstones, Redshank and Pied Wagtails. Further out on a calm but misty sea, in some cases testing our identification skills, we were able to make out Great Crested Grebe, 3 Slavonian Grebes, Red Throated Divers and a group of Common Scoter. Back on the land a Curlew was feeding in a nearby field, Mute Swans and Gulls made good use of the small man made lake, and a number of small birds including a passing flock of Finches added interest to a short stroll up the nearby stream (Afon Du) to find 2 Dippers collecting nesting material for a nest that looked as though it was right under the A55! Some of the group took advantage of the adjacent tea room before we decided to move further along the coast. Moving one junction up the A55 and following Nature Reserve signs we anticipated finding the Spinnies but actually ended up at Morfa Aber. This turned out to be a splendid site (despite the locked and disused Hide) for large numbers of ducks including Wigeon, Teal, Pintail and Shelduck. Also a good number of Pale Bellied Brent Geese were making use of the small inlet and for the keen eyed 6 Snipe rested along the edge of the water. Waders were not to be forgotten with feeding Dunlin, Knot, Redshank, Black Tailed Godwit and Curlew. Some large flocks of passing Lapwing gave us chance to look for hidden Plover in their midst, unfortunately not on this occasion. After lunching at a conveniently sited picnic table we thought we would try our luck at the Conwy rspb reserve which was to be a first visit for a couple of the group. We were in luck (apart from the elusive Firecrest) and a tour of the reserve brought us over 30 species including smaller birds such as a Long Tailed Tit; a female Greater Spotted Woodpecker among the trees and bushes; Ducks, Little Egret, Little Grebe, Pochard and Red Breasted Merganser on the pools; and waders along the estuary including some Ringed Plover well spotted by the ladies in the Group. Finally having seen good numbers of some splendid looking birds we returned satisfied to the Wirral.