Friday, 31 July 2015


Another cracking experience with the Nightjars at Llyn Bodgynydd last night.One male churring. Heard one calling nearby so walked up the gravel path and one was on the path,a young bird I think,as it was calling all the time. I got to within 10 feet of it giving cracking views. It flew off several times but returned to the same spot,but even closer to me. If you go up there do not bother with midge repellent,just take your thermals,it was freezing up there !

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Happy Birthday to RSPB Conwy!

I headed over to RSPB Conwy with the family and my Dad to celebrate it's 20th Birthday yesterday afternoon which co-incided (thankfully) with the best weather of the weekend. There was plenty to do with a good selection of stalls, pond-dipping, bird-ringing demo, moths, tombola and Ice-cream! Also Iolo Williams made a speech and cut the cake to officially wish Conwy RSPB a Happy 20th Birthday. Penblwydd hapus :-)

Iolo and the boys.


Pond dipping.

Lesser Whitethroat.

Garden Tiger, one of the moths on display.

An audience with Iolo.


Smooth Newt.

Steve Dodd and a Lesse Whitethroat.

Julian, Robin and Dafydd.

Tony and Karin White

Tuesday, 21 July 2015


On Sunday at 9.15 am I had a Roseatte tern fly out of the colony calling. That afternoon the warden Dawn had an otter again on Tyn llan pool.

Friday, 17 July 2015

RSPB Conwy sightings board

Green sandpiper has been a daily sighting here this week (with two yesterday and today), several common sandpipers are also on the mud, and the black-tailed godwits look superb in their orange plumage - there are 14 here today.  A few dunlins have been seen (three today, for example), and there are already hundreds of redshanks and curlews roosting and feeding here, with whimbrel seen most days.  A knot was seen on the estuary and on the lagoons last weekend, and two greenshanks on Sunday. Best bird of the week was a wood sandpiper last Saturday; unfortunately it didn't stick around.

More sightings on the reserve blog, plus an explanation of where the lagoon goes in summer.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Butterflies and Moths of July - plus a Red foot!

As it's quite a quiet time of year for birding there's always plenty of other things to go looking for. The Silver-studded Blues are showing well at South Stack as are the Dark green Fritillaries at Aberffraw common. There's plenty of other good things there also included Banded Demoiselles and Marsh Helliborine Orchids. The moth trap tends to attract pretty cool moths this time of year including Large and Small Elephant, Poplar and Eyed Hawk-moths. Further afield this weekend I popped down to Northants to Fermyn Woods to see the beautiful Purple Emperor and Silver washed Fritillary and on the way back the very tame Red footed Falcon in North Staffs. All in all a pretty productive weekend.

Silver-studed blues are on the wing at South Stack

Elephant Hawkmoth

Poplar Hawkmoth

Silver studs on the orange spots.

Sion and the Elephant Hawkmoth

Purple Emperor

Purple Emperor

Silver washed Fritilary

Dark Green Fritilary

Red footed Falcon

Buff tip

Marsh Helliborine

6 spot burnet moth

Small Elephant Hawkmoth

Eyed Hawkmoth

Buff tip

Friday, 10 July 2015

RSPB Conwy sightings board

Water levels and mud conditions look just right on the lagoons at the moment, and we're starting to see some passage waders: green sandpiper, little-ringed plovers, knot and black-tailed godwits in recent days.

Elsewhere on the reserve, the weekly blog is mostly about dragonflies, butterflies, bumblebees and moths. The orchids are almost over, but there are plenty of other wild flowers to get to grips with.


The Nightjars at Llyn Bodgynydd were showing really well tonight in really good light,although it was cold up there. At least four birds seen. One seen feeding over the small lake wing flapping etc.Most amazing bit was when a Tawny Owl flew in followed by two Nightjars. The owl landed on a post and the Nightjars landed on posts next to it. I watched for a full ten minutes whilst one Nightjar repeatedly attacked the Tawny from the top of a bush. An amazing observation I am likely to not encounter agian.

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Photographing my Yellowhammers this afternoon and this little beauty appeared on my bird table,for the third day running. I know its not a bird but they take some beating.

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Gull billed Tern

A Gull-billed Tern was in Mid-Wales on Thursday. It's quite a rare bird in Britain but otherwise you can find it on all continents bar Antarctica. I still needed it for my British list but when it turned up at Burton Mere Wetlands near Queensferry on the border on friday afternoon I thought I would chance it after work,  and thankfully it hung around long enough for me to get it! It showed well but occasionally followed Black headed gulls hawking over an adjacent field prior to heading out into the estuary c.8.30 pm. It wasn't seen there today. I wonder where it will turn up next? Leighton Moss or Caerlaveroch perhaps? Great reserve, loads of Blackwits, Avocets, Green Sand and breeding plumage Ruffs and Spotted (Black) Redshanks. Wonderful!

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

The Squacco Heron Twitch

Here's a selection of shots of yesterday's Squacco Heron at Cemlyn when it was relocated in the evening. Initially it was perched in some willows by a ditch but then it flew to the top of the bushes where it stayed for at least 20 minutes prior to flying towards the shore and presumably away as it wasn't seen again.

It showed well for quite a while.

It was quite noticeable when we first spotted it!

David arrived to Police the Twitch.

It didn't like the local Buzzard.

Brian Iddon let a Birder in a Suit use his scope, but it wasn't Martin.

Then it flew off.

....and then Martin arrived.

But sadly Martin couldn't relocate it and even some kind words
from a passing cow failed to cheers him up.

Hobbies up North

On Monday David Wright had a Hobby at Cemlyn and possibly the same bird was nearby at Tregele the next day seen by Tony White chasing hirundines over his house! So it could still be in the area.

Squacco Heron at Cemlyn

It was found yesterday at 8am by the warden Dawn at 8am in the cow drinking pool viewable from the walled off house Bryn aber, then it flew to the adjacent wet field then flew off inland at 8.05. It returned c. 1.30ish when it was in the ditch by the old stone pigshed on the track down to Tyn llan farm for c.20 minutes then it flew towards Hen Borth. It was relocated at c.6.15 pm in willows beyond Tyn llan farm on the path to the chapel in the field then walk left down to the ditch where the footpath crosses it. It flew up into the tree tops, periodically calling, a frog like "bok". then at 6.52-ish it flew off towards the shoreline, not inland like on previous occasions, and wasn't relocated later on that evening.