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Llandudno birding an early start

September is one of the months to be out in field at every opportunity. Migration should be happening and all too soon it will be over. With that in mind, the alarm was set early and out we went. Ok, so it has to be said the alarm had been set a tad too early! Herring Gulls were up and about and flocks of Cormorants left their cliff roost in the half light but no other birds stirred yet.

Llandudno Sept dawn 1

Not light enough to see many birds but a stunning view!

Llandudno Sept dawn 2

Looking a little further east across Llandudno Bay to the Little Orme.

A short drive took us up on to the Great Orme, the headland above Llandudno and a lovely sunrise greeted us.

Llandudno Sept sunrise

As the light came up excited calls of Chough rang out across the limestone pavement as three of these corvids swooped low overhead. Next up was a very noisy Common Buzzard that circled slowly over the pavement. A Peregrine Falcon soared above the buzzard and gained height easily. Soon it was little more than a dot in the sky.

Migrants however, were very hard to find, a few Northern Wheatears hopped from boulder to boulder and five Grey Wagtails flew over calling loudly. Despite a good search of the area no more migrants could be found.

More loud calling as a lovely flock of thirteen Chough, a good number for here, wheeled across the sky as two Peregrine Falcons powered over, wow!

There were plenty of resident Stonechats about and it was great to see so many juvenile birds amongst them, a good breeding season. A Kestrel hovered over the car park as we headed back for breakfast.

It was then down to our other local patch at RSPB Conwy to look for some waders. With the tide in, the reserve was busy with plenty of birds roosting on the shallow lagoons.

Conwy RSPB

Wader RSPB Conwy

Do you know what it is yet?

Curlew Sand Conwy Sept 1

Bit easier with its head up, a juvenile Curlew Sandpiper.

Curlew Sand Conwy Sept 2

Great to see mixed waders feeding in the shallow water.

Dunlin Conwy Sept 1

Juvenile Dunlin making nice comparison with the Curlew Sandpiper.

At least six juvenile Curlew Sandpipers were feeding on the lagoons, amazing to think that these small waders have flown from Siberia to North Wales. Dunlin, Common Snipe, Bar-tailed Godwit, Black-tailed Godwit, Ringed Plover, Lapwing, Redshank and Curlew were all on show. Plenty of Little Egrets and Grey Herons were feeding around the pools where Little Grebes were diving and a flock of newly-arrived Wigeon dropped in.

With the winds set to turn to the north we could be in for an influx of migrant birds in the next few days, so watch this space. And don't forget to set your alarm!


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