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Griswold's 2013 List (1 Viewer)

ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
Top Tip

The chicken and ham pies from Dewi Roberts Butchers in Llandeilo are absolutely delicious. :eat: Can't believe I haven't tried these before.:eek!:

No new birds today but had decent views of Red Kites. Plenty of juvenile Wheatears around near Crai. Also used the SX50 to help determine the ID of three ducks on the other side of Usk Reservoir.

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
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Supporter
Wales
Some very helpful birders again in the British Steel hide at Penclacwydd today. Didn't have long as I had both my children with me today but was latched onto number 155 for the year very quickly.

155. Long Billed Dowitcher Lifer Number 11:king:B :)B :)B :)

Rich
 

ClarkWGriswold

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Wales
Had a couple of hours at Goldcliff and Newport Wetlands Centre this afternoon. Quiet birding wise - Barnacle Goose (strange), Egret, Blackwits, Redshanks etc.

Met some decent birders from Magor, Bath and Chepstow.

Added the following:

156. Little Ringed Plover

Rich
 

ClarkWGriswold

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Wales
Well, with the children visiting in-laws in Essex I decided to "rough" it and go camping. The early finish from work didn't materialise as per usual but I still managed to pick up my father's van with plenty of time.

The plan was to head to Cors Caron and take an evening walk around the reserve hoping for an Owl or two. The Owls did not occur but it was still a great walk. I even did my bit for charity by donating a couple of pint of blood to the local midgeso:)

There were several Red Kites around along with a few Buzzards. A particularly dark phase CB momentarily sparked my curiosity but it remained a CB. A couple of Sparrowhawks and the usual passerines and hirundines were around but not a lot else. I decided to call it a night, set the alarm for 4 and fall asleep to the sound of the local Tawny Owls.

I awoke to the theme to The Odd Couple (my alarm on my mobile), looked out the window and reset for 5. Dawn was nowhere near.

On leaving Cors Caron my destination was Borth. Heaps of CB's were on the telegraph poles enroute. At Borth itself a quick scan gave a few Manxies out at sea. This is a lifer for me as dead ones don't count. Their disappearing act was great to watch. Easy to pick out when you see their underside and harder when you could not. From here as I was in the area I headed to Ynyslas reserve passing a Curlew on the golf course on the way. Being early the visitor centre was closed so I headed along the walkway. This led up to a terrific vantage point and more Manxies and a handful of Gannets were seen. The dunes were teeming with Rabbits and a few flocks of Linnets and the odd Common Whitehroat.

On returning to the van the rain set in which was to be with me for the rest of the day.

157. Manx Shearwater Lifer # 12o:Do:Do:DB :)

A quick look at the map revealed Ynys Hir (RSPB Reserve) to be a couple of miles up the coast so that was the next destination. Again, the place was not open as I was too early but access to the reserve can still be gained. (I later paid my entry fee when I returned and it was fully open).

I decided to head straight for the hide overlooking the ponds just to get out of the rain more than anything. Several Herons were there along with some Mallards. Looking out to the estuary there were huge numbers of Canada Geese. A Ginsters Peppered Steak slice sated my hunger and the rain had eased enough to head down to the lower hide. A couple of LBJ's were flitting around but hard to pin down. I think at least one was a Reed Warbler.

On walking down to the next hide alongside where the children do the pond dipping I was amazed to see a Stoat bold as brass bouncing up the track toward me. I love seeing these mammals but rarely do so. My attention was so distracted that I practically stood on a Sandpiper which flew off giving a distinct alarm call. It also had a bright white rump - probable Green Sandpiper?? A little further down the track showed the remains of what looked like a Canada Goose so perhaps this gave a clue as to why the Stoat was there. The only disappointment was that as it was still drizzling I did not have my camera out:C

As the track rounded the corner there was a family of Reed Bunting and Mippits. A quick look over to the estuary gave a solitary Snow Goose in amongst the Canadas. The waders were too distant for my 8x's. Having been chuffed with the Stoat seeing another mammal with 100 metres was extremely unexpected (and possibly unwanted give the animal in question!). But there, right in front of me, again, extremely bold was a Mink:eek!: A distinctive individual with a white flash down it's chest.

From here it was onto the next hide. Several Herons again along with some Teal. A wader however caught my eye some distance away. After watching it for some time another appeared at the same spot. Knowing the depth of knowledge on this forum I took the best shots I could and hoped for the best. There were definitely Sandpipers and to my eyes did not look like Commons. At this point a family from North Wales arrived and I was able to point out what I thought maybe a Green Sandpiper to them. The girls were thoroughly enjoying watching the Herons flying around. A very obliging Willow Warbler hopefully gave the dad some good photos. From here it was back to the van stopping on the way to watch a Spotted Flycatcher that had landed on a branch right above my head.

Back in the van I set the Sat Nav for home and set off. Several times I cursed my younger brother for fiddling with the settings (wrongly as it transpired - sorry Neil) as I was directed down some very narrow lanes. This did produce an odd moment however as a Heron flew in front of the van for maybe 100 metres or so, unable to get out of the way due the encroaching trees. I've had this happen with Sparrowhawks and Buzzards before but not a Heron.

Back home and thanks to Val, Sam and Phil species #158 was confirmed.

158. Green Sandpiper Lifer # 13B :)B :)B :)

Overall I was really pleased with the number of species seen and the great views afforded. The mammals were really a bonus. The whole area is also amazingly beautiful.

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Wales
"Roughed it" again in the van Thursday night. Dropped the boys off with the grandparents and headed for Mwnt via Cardigan.

Didn't stay long at the Welsh Wildlife Centre as it was too busy for my taste. A Barnacle Goose on the river was a little unexpected. The usual Little Egrets, Warblers, Curlew, Buzzards etc. etc. were present.

Ty Gwyn campsite had been booked the previous day. This has a great location backing directly onto the coastal path. One of the toilet blocks was, shall we say, not good but the new one near the tents etc. was spot on with the exception of only having one shower.

An evening walk along the coastal path gave distant views of Common Dolphins, Grey Seals, Common Whitethroats, Stonechats, BWJ's, a family of 8 Chough and species #159.

159. Fulmar

After a cracking walk with Sars we decided to turn in for the night. A beautiful bottle of Aussie Shiraz with some Perl Las whilst listening to The Doors rounded the evening off. I do enjoy "roughing it". I feel I can now empathise with Bear Grylls.;)
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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My wife's idea of an early start is not the same as mine.;)

We eventually got out of the van at 8:30ish and headed up the hill behind the church. A couple of Chough and Ravens were giving a great display in the wind. The views from the top were absolutely beautiful.

Back to the van and a couple of bacon butties later (great bacon in Cross Hands farm shop:eat:) we were ready to hit the road. Thoughts of a boat trip were not met with approval from OH due to intermittent showers.

We decided to head to Solva to have a walk along the coast there. Unfortunately Solva was chocca with people wearing their jumpers over their shoulders - my anti-social side reared it's ugly head so we very quickly left.

Looking at the map, Marloes Mere was fairly close by. Knowing it had a long staying Glossy Ibis there we set the sat nav. Some of the roads are extremely narrow which needs to be taken into account if planning a trip here. Van parked it was down to the hide. Plenty of blackbirds feeding on Blackberries on the walk down. On settling into the hide not a single bird was to be seen. There was however an older couple having a picnic in front of the hide!!:storm: To say something or not? Not being in the best of moods I decided against.

Further down the track and a Dabchick with young followed by a flyover male Sparrowhawk quickly elevated my mood again. Over to the next hide at least there were some birds present. No Glossy Ibis however.

Time to hit the road and pick up the children. Might get a night off in September so will try to talk OH into going to Hams Wall.

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Had a great view of a Raven cronking away yesterday perched atop a rock at Bracelet Bay. A bedraggled Rock Pipit was also flitting around where the boys were playing.

Today a couple of hours on my own at Penclacwydd gave hundreds of Blackwits, Kingfishers, Gadwall, Spoonbill, the long staying Lesser Yellowlegs again, Green and Redshanks, Blackcaps and number 160. As always, apologies for the photos but they were quite some distance away. Again, as always, there some very helpful members of the Carmarthenshire Bird Club present:t:

160. Lifer #14 Curlew Sandpiper B :)B :)B :)

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Also had a fiddle trying to get a Macro shot of what I presume is a Red Darter?? I'm even worse with insects than I am with birds3:)

Forgot to mention my 2 year old son found a young Adder at Llangennith this afternoon:eek!:

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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The garden was chocca with birds this morning. Most of the common species along with a couple of migrants.
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Went with the family to Penclacwydd this afternoon. From the British Steel Hide the male Ruff and Lesser Yellowlegs were still present. There were also hundreds of Blackwits and over a hundred Redshanks along with a couple of Curlew Sandpipers. Had the opportunity to look through a fellow birders Nikon ED50. I must say I was hugely impressed with this bit of kit. I know they're not cheap but they certainly seem worth the money.

In amongst the Blackwits were a couple of these:

161. Bar Tailed Godwit

Rich
 

ClarkWGriswold

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Hundreds of House Martins over Ynystawe this morning. Earlier in the morning managed a couple of quick "grab" shots of some Turnstones on the jetty at Aberavon.

162. Turnstone
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Just noticed I've put this thread on slightly the wrong forum. I wonder if one of the mods would be kind enough to move it over to Member's Lists 2103 please?

Many thanks,

Rich
 

ClarkWGriswold

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Decisions, decisions.

Neath were playing the dole monkeys in a local derby at The Gnoll or a few hours to myself birding. The weather was good and the tide was in. Birding won. Unlike Neath as it turned out.

Down to Penclacwydd. Thanks to confirmation from fellow BF'ers #163 was added. Plenty of Godwits, Gadwall, Lapwings, Egrets, Long Tailed Tits, Redshanks, Greenshanks etc. and some funky Starlings:hippy: were also around.

163. Knott

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Pointed the Zed East today. Must get the exhaust seen to as it's blowing badly and I'm too old to be a boy racer.

Arrived at Goldcliff a little too late. A large flock of waders had just departed. Bumped into a few birders from the Carmarthenshire Bird Club who are always good company. Also got chatting to a few Cardiff birders - Ron, David and Jon. All very decent birders.

Headed to Newport Wetlands Centre after this and kept up my 100% record of missing the Beardies. This despite the Carmarthenshire mob seeing them a few minutes earlier.:-C

Added # 164 at Goldcliff

164. Grey Plover
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Heard there was a Grey Phalarope at Penclacwydd today :-C

Might take the boys down in the morning to see if it's still there. Also at Goldcliff was a very light phase CB along with a few Avocets and some Snipe. A few Pochard, Dabchicks etc. were at the Wetlands Centre.
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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No sign of Grey Phalarope this morning. Hopefully it'll turn up for the birders who had more time than myself. Had to make do with the Lesser Yellowlegs, Spoonbill and a whole heap of Blackwits, Red and Greenshanks.

Rich
 

ClarkWGriswold

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Had a quick attempt at a macro shot with the SX50. This spider had made its home across one of the hide windows.
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Apart from dropping a whole chocolate fudge cake:eek!: this morning was a very good morning and one of the birding highlights of my year.

As usual me and the boy went to Penclacwydd for an hour or so. Picked up a couple of Ruff in front of the observatory and then walked to the British Steel Hide. Quickly got onto bird #165 and lifer #15 thanks to Wendell. The boy was distracted by Angry Birds on the phone and I spent a fantastic 20 minutes watching:

165. Grey Phalarope. Lifer #15B :)B :)B :)B :):king:

What an amazing bird.

Rich
 

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