Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Porth Ysgaden Pipit

I had a call from Dei Rhys Jones this afternoon who had the good fortune to come across a probable Richard's Pipit at Porth Ysgaden around lunchtime today. Although Dei is not the most experienced birder his description sounds spot on. He had prolonged telescope views of the bird on the pasture - describing it as a large pale upright pipit - alongside the resident Rock Pipits, and also heard it's characteristic sparrow-like calls in flight. It also hovered before landing as it flew around the area before heading north-east.

I decided to meet up with Eddie late afternoon in the hope of relocating it. Sadly there was no sign of the target but a nice flock of 56 Golden Plovers were overhead, 16 Turnstone fed on the beach and 16 Wigeon were roosting offshore. Two vocal Red-billed Chough were busy demolishing the clawdd in the search for food.

Before long the sun was setting and it was time to head home - grumble, grumble... November days are too short but only a month to go before the shortest day and the promise of all that verdant green lamb frolicking bird singing daffodilly springness!

Thursday, 8 November 2012

November Birding

Oh well that's another autumn over - or is it? Just heard we've had one of the coldest October's on record and it really feels like it with some low temperatures and that horrible greyness I associate with this month. I've done a little birding since the last update but not seen too much of interest apart from a decent flock of Wigeon and a party of Pintail on the Llanengan floods a few days ago.

So the year turns and with it the annual rituals. The Sibley Guide to North American Birds has been removed from the car boot and is firmly back on the bookshelf as the forlorn hope of finding a Yankee passerine in Porth Meudwy is swept away for another year.

Porridge every morning.

The sunrise and sunset has become more rapid unlike the long drawn out dusks of summer (well at least the odd night when it was possible to sit outside).

The medium sized blackish birds zooming across the sky are Starlings now, rather than Barn Swallows.

Eternal dampness outside... but the wood burner is lovely of an evening.

I had a wander around the fields by the house tonight at dusk and glimpsed a Barn Owl in the twilight over the rough grassland. A posse of Redwings called overhead. Song Thrushes and Robins were disturbed from the gorse topped cloddiau as I passed while a distant bonfire glowed on the road to Pen-y-caerau.

Hoping for a local Waxwing soon...