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A rosey day out on Anglesey

Picked up Adrian, Phil and Roger and we headed over to Anglesey. Near Beaumaris we stopped to watch a drake Red breasted Merganser close to the road, of course we quickly added more species to the fledgling day list including a family of Grey lag Geese and some noisy Oystercatchers.

Another roadside stop for a gang of Sandwich Terns roosting on seaweed covered rocks. Shags were swimming at the base of the rocks and out in the bay we witnessed the spectacle of Gannets diving like rockets into the sea for fish! What a sight as bird after bird transformed into a dart and hit the water with a huge splash.

At Penmon Point we looked across to nearby Puffin Island, the sea was alive with birds, constant traffic as birds ferried fish to hungry young on the cliffs. A Black Guillemot bobbed on the waves just offshore near the lighthouse. Puffins were picked out amongst the masses of Guillemots and Razorbills buzzing low over the water. Kittiwakes and Sandwich Tern hurried through the narrow straight as gangs of juvenile Shags lined up on low rocks. A gang of nine Eider floated out into view, the drakes so handsome by the brown females.

We then worked our way up the east coast of Anglesey seeing Black Guillemots at two more sites and again watching Gannets feeding offshore. We found an un-seasonal Bar tailed Godwit feeding with Curlew as a Little Egret roosted nearby.

At Cemlyn we were greeted with the usual clamour of the huge Sandwich Tern colony. Arctic and Common Terns were lined up on the rocks alongside the islands and we compared these very similar species. Amongst the nesting Black-headed Gulls was a stunning second summer Mediterranean Gull, what a looker, complete jet black hang man style hood, bright red bill and a white eye-ring. The Med Gull really showed off – wing stretching, and then giving us a fly past, what a bird!

Sandwich Tern
Great views of Common Terns coming in with food for hungry chicks

Walking round onto the shingle ridge we got closer views of the terns and were very lucky indeed to have great views of an adult Roseate Tern on the rocks on the edge of the main island. A real rarity these days, Roseate Terns formerly bred here, this one was looking settled preening in the sunshine and we soaked up the views.

On the beach we found Dunlin, Ringed Plover and Curlew while offshore a seawatch produced great looks at Manx Shearwaters skimming the waves.

Manx Shearwater
Manx Shearwaters swept past Cemlyn head

Next stop Beddmanarch Bay where another second summer Mediterranean Gull entertained us – posing for photos in the car park, just amazing views.

At RSPB South Stack we quickly found our main target bird, Chough, and had great views as they fed recently fledged young and tumbled through the air just above us calling loudly, fantastic birds. We enjoyed more seabirds and of course more Puffins as a Rock Pipit fed almost at our feet and male Stonechat was along the cliff top path. The scenery was just breath taking we could even across to Ireland it was so clear!

Last stop of the day was back on the mainland at RSPB Conwy where gave the day list a great boost with waders, wildfowl and warblers! Two stunning breeding plumaged Black tailed Godwit were amongst a flock of Redshank as Little ringed Plover scurried about on the mud.

A great days birding and we saw well over 90 species in great scenery and had a laugh along the way.

Why not join for great birding? Email for details of our forth coming trips, we would love to share great birds with you.


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