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Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch
Biggest Twitch

Pre-dawn Alan met our friends Owen and Glynis for a full days birding in North Wales. Sadly Ruth was not well so could not join in. By dawn the three were stood at Shotwick Boating Lake in Flintshire just south of the Dee Estuary. One of the first birds was a Stock Dove, one of the target birds here so good start. The lake held plenty of wildfowl but despite a good search no sign of the two Scaup that had been here recently. Slipping and sliding on thick ice they moved to the edge of Burton Marsh, still in Flintshire and scanned the vast marshland. A flock of 45 Bewick’s Swans were easy to see gazing near the new Flint bridge and beyond them Whooper and Mute Swans were on the grazing marsh. A large flock of Pink-footed Geese flew over the outer marsh. Then a ring-tail Hen Harrier drifted across quickly followed by the sighting of two Peregrines.
Time to move on and they headed west to Bodelwydden Woods. A good selection of birds were added to the day list, highlights being Marsh Tit, Nuthatch and Great-spotted Woodpecker.
On again to Kinmel Bay beach where the wind was howling and waves crashing against the shore with a black sky looking very ominous to the north. Luckily the birds were well behaved here. Sanderling, Grey Plover, Ringed Plover and Turnstone were all added instantly and then Owen picked up the Snow Buntings a few meters further up the beach from the waders and the birders were off west again.
At Abergele it took far too long to find the Brambling and time was slipping away fast if they were to reach Anglesey with enough time to find the birds wanted.
The Purple Sandpipers were just where they should be so a little time saved here. Three Twite were also well behaved at Llandudno with the Linnet flock on Bodafon Fields.
Stopping in the lay-by on the A470 gave a panoramic view over Conwy RSPB reserve and Black-tailed Godwit was on the list. South down the Conwy valley but neither Common Sandpiper or Hawfinch could be found.
West again to Aber Ogwen and here their luck was better and Spotted Redshank, Greenshank, Goosander all added. Nearby two Dipper and Grey Wagtail showed well.
Then they crossed the bridge onto Anglesey but it was mid-afternoon already and the light was going already as it sleeted.
At Beddmanarch Bay Pale-bellied Brent Geese were showing well and a Mediterranean Gull was stood amongst a flock of Black-headed Gulls, very nice.
Holyhead Harbour quickly gave them three Black Guillemots and a cracking view of a Great Northern Diver.
With next to no light left South Stack RSPB failed to produce any Chough or Stonechats, no surprise given the awful weather and near dark!
It had been a great day and a total of 96 species recorded, not bad considering the poor weather, and not a Canada Goose to be seen!


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