News archive

February 2019

Saturday, 23 February 2019

Male goldeneye

You'd never believe it, having ice cream whilst seawatching on the North Wales coast in February !!

We were up early with the warming winter sun. Before doing our seawatch, we called in at Llanbedr-y-cennin and were rewarded by finding a lovely Hawfinch sitting atop a Silver Birch tree. Although distant, through the telescope and in the good light, we all had excellent views. Buzzard and a Red Kite used the thermals created by the warm winter sun to slowly glide past our position. Then off down to Conwy RSPB for Pochard, Goosander, Red-breasted Merganser, Tufted Duck, Gadwall and Goldeneye plus Little Grebe, Redshank and 2 superbly camouflaged Snipe, sitting in a clump of reed stumps at the end of one of the islands. After lunch we we set about seawatching in earnest - although it was difficult because the warm weather had resulted in quite a thick sea haze. Many Common Scoters could be seen but they tended to stay much further out than usual (probably the result of the rather unusually warm and calm weather) and so it provde difficult to see if there was anything rarer amongst them. Large numbers of Great Crested Grebe could be seen on the sea, some in their summer plumage whilst others still in their drabber winter wears! A Red Throated Diver was seen on a number of occasions diving for food .... or was it a number of Divers seen but we were all looking at different birds ? As a result of the warm weather many people walked along the beach disturbing the small flock of Dunlin, 2 Sanderling, 3 Ringed Plovers and Turnstones that had been resting on the shingle over the tide. After ice creams, we moved on to Rhyl to find the Long tailed Duck on the river Clwyd, which had settled in with a small group of Wigeon. A good day .... some lovely birds, warm weather and excellent company !