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Griswold's 2013 List (1 Viewer)

ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
Looked out of the conservatory his morning bleary eyed and saw a strange looking bird on the patio.

Quickly waking up revealed that my kids really should learn to tidy up after themselves3:)

Of course, it could always be Neath's first record of a Kookaburra.:eek!:
 

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ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
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Wales
Took the family bus up to Usk Resevoir with my boys and the old man. Nothing new to add but quite a few Red Kite, Common Buzzards and a couple of my faves around.:t:
 

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ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
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Wales
A couple of visits to Penclacwydd this week gave Ruff, plenty of Gadwall as usual, the Spoonbill and Knot.

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
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Wales
Today's visit also gave Spotted Redshanks(3) and species # 166 and lifer #16. This was also one of my two target birds this year so only Bittern to go.

Apologies for the photos but I wanted to get some record shots.

166. Water Rail. Lifer # 16B :)B :):king:

Once again the Carmarthenshire Birders Club were fantastically helpful. All made a fuss of my 2 year old as usual which is something he appreciates:t:

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
Disappointing day birding wise at Slimbridge today. It's difficult to give each hide enough time to do them justice though when you have the children with you. I genuinely believe a scope is almost essential equipment for the Zeiss Hide and Holden Tower. My 8x's were not enough for me.

A decent flock of Barnacle Geese were a distant happy sight though.

Other highlights were three Morgans, including a 3 wheeler and a lime green Aventador. Not many cars can carry off that colour but it looked amazing:t:

Rich
 

ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
A good morning this morning. Up early to put the beef in Guinness in the oven to slow cook.

Down to Penclacwydd for a couple of hours and picked up species # 168 after a good half hours staring at clumps of rushes.

168. Glossy Ibis (ppv) Lifer #17 B :)B :)B :):t:

To top it off I've just had the beef and it was beautiful.

Rich
 

ClarkWGriswold

Carpe Carpum
Staff member
Supporter
Wales
Added a few Dabchick grabs from last Wednesday.

Had a decent drive over to Usk Resevoir coming back over Cwm Cadlan via the Greasy Spoon on the A470 approx. 4 miles South of Brecon.

Plenty of Fieldfares and Redwings by Crai. Surprisingly saw a Dipper at Usk Reservoir - not seen one there before. Plenty of Fieldfares again at Cwm Cadlan and a Kestrel sitting on a distant rock. Momentarily thought I had my first Merlin:-O
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Too windy to get out and about in Herefordshire today. Have had 3 Sprawks, Red Kite, Common Buzzards and a white Pheasant on the way to the farm shop. Now it's time to batten down the hatches and get stuck into some local ciders and cheeses:eat:B :)

Rich
 

ClarkWGriswold

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A family trip to Herefordshire last week added a couple more to the year list. I decided against completing a trip report as Speyside it most certainly is not!

Having said that, it's a beautiful county with some cracking ciders and farm shops dotted around and the people we met were genuinely friendly. My personal favourite cider was from Yarlington Mill Cider just south of Leominster. Their apple juice is also excellent and the staff are really helpful.

Species # 169 was on the hedge at the back of the cottage.

169. Yellowhammer

Rich
 
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ClarkWGriswold

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With Rhayader being so close a trip to Gigrin Farm was a must. This should be on everyone's itinerary as it's an amazing spectacle. Even the boys sat there in awe for approx. 20 minutes.
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Unfortunately, we had to share a hide with this vicious threat to our biodiversirty;) No water voles or Whimbrel were seen so she must have been responsible. :-O

This vicious threats name was Florrie btw and, all jokes aside, she was fantastic. The boys took a real shine to her.
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Took the family bus up the Elan Valley which was incredibly blustery and picked up another "Tourist Merlin" on the way back.
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Later in the week we tried Bodenham Lake. This had blue/green algae through it. Bodenham was a beautiful little village but not many species were seen - Bullfinches etc.

Another trip to the Forest of Dean gave species # 170 at Cannop Ponds. Although I've not seen one in the "wild" before for some reason I don't think I'll class it as a lifer.

170 Mandarin

A short drive from Cannop Ponds was Nagshead Reserve. Unfortunately we did not have enough time here as the boys were getting bored. I'll try and get back on my own and spend more time there as it appeared a great little reserve. A Hawfinch had been seen the day before along with Crossbills.

Didn't know the RSPB were Evil Dead fans. For anyone wanting access to the Bruce Campbell Hide the password is "Klaatu Barada Nikto";)

There was plenty of evidence of wild boar activity but none to be seen. The area seemed popular with dog walkers so if you're after a sighting you may need to bare this in mind with regard to time of visit.
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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And finally. We came back via Cors Caron Reserve. This is one of my favourite areas but if I'd been travelling any distance specifically for the reserve I would have been more than a little annoyed. Work is being done on the boardwalk which, obviously, I have no issue with. The workman was great allowing me clamber between the work being done. The hide can still be accessed but from the path further along. My issue was with the hide itself. Whilst it looks "pretty" as a hide it was extremely ineffectual. The misting/ condensation in the photos attached was on the outside of the glass btw so could not be cleared off:C:C

Some compensation came in the form of a cracking meal at Y Talbot in Tregaron again.:eat: I can thoroughly recommend the Cauliflower Soup followed by the Lamb and Rosemary Pie with Mash and Veg.

Rich
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Spent a very enjoyable couple of hours at Kenfig Pool this morning. The Kingfisher was putting on a great display. Some very decent young families in the hide along with a couple of dog owners and some very helpful photographers.

I've been waiting 42 years to see a Bittern and then two turn up. Exactly the same with Cettis. I keep hearing these but kept failing to locate. Then two of the little beauties were on the walk to the hide:D

171. Bitterns Lifer #18 B :)B :):D

172. Cettis Warbler Lifer #19B :)B :):king:

That's both the target birds I'd set myself at the start of the year - Bittern and Water Rail:t: What to aim for next year is the question - perhaps a big finch?:king:
 

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ClarkWGriswold

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Final birding session of the year today. Nothing new to add but had a really enjoyable few hours at Whiteford Point with my father. Sat in the hide and watched the tide bring the birds to us. Heaps of Brent Geese were right in front along with a couple of rafts of Eider and Grey Plovers, Pintail, Turnstone, Lapwings etc.

To sum up 2013:

Best bird:

Grey Phalarope at Penclacwydd. I could have sat and watched it all day. Closely followed by a single Red Kite over a very snowy Brecon Beacons.

Birding highlight of the year:

This may sound odd but it actually involves dipping. Wandering around the Forest at 4:30 a.m in Speyside was amazingly tranquil and stunningly beautiful. Missed my quarry (Caper) but a damn good reason to return.

Thanks to everyone for all tips and advice with honorable mentions going to Howard, Ian and members of the Carmarthenshire Bird Club.

2014 holds a two week trip to Speyside so stroll on. The target is now >172.

Good luck to everyone next year and I hope that everyone on BF has a cracking New Year.

All the best,

Rich
 

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