Monday, 6 August 2012


Things are still a bit on the quiet side, so when the news of a Gull Billed Tern came up on the pager we arranged to go for it on Saturday. A text was sent around the Clams and a pick up time of 04.30am was arranged.

We arrived at Ynyslas at 07.30am and parked the car on the beach, there was only 4 birders there scanning aross the estuary. Just as we got our scopes out the car a large group of Sandwich Terns flew in from off the sea and landed on the mud infront of us about 200 yards out.

Then one of the other Birders said that he had got it!, so we trained our scopes onto the the area and the bird in question, but we could only see the top of the birds head briefly then it went out of view, so non tickable views!

We continued to scan through the Terns checking every new arrival to the pack but no joy, but a immature Med Gull was picked up and a few Dunlin but no Gull Billed. Where had the bird gone?

Another half hour passed and the tide was rapidly rising pushing the Terns up closer to us, then Olly Clam saw another Tern flying in from up river and land in front of the main Tern flock , just as I got my scope on it an other birder shouted "Ive got it" , and there it was - GET IN ! Gull Billed Tern, a life tick for all the Clams.

We watched the bird for about an hour giving us excellent views and the sun came out for us too, which is as rare as the Tern for Wales.

                                        Bearded Clam looking like an Albanian Maffia member !

The Clams were hungry so we headed into Borth to get fed and decide where to go next! Over a big breckfast in the Sands Cafe, we decided to go and do a bit of sea watching , so we arrived up to coast at Clarach Bay, parked up the car on the beach front and had a quick scann through the bins.

There was hundreds of Manx Shearwaters passing by, so we quickly set up our scopes scanning through them hopping for a lost Cory's or Great Shearwater, but after about half an hour we had no luck but the sight of all Manx's passing by was a great sight to see, we also had about 20 Gannets, 2 Common Scoter and a Great Skua pass through which was nice.Then the heavens opened up so we packed up and got into the car, where next?.

We decided to go to the RSPB reserve at Ynys-Hir that was featured on the Spring Watch programe earlier in the year.

                                          View over the Salt Marsh from one of the hides

We arrived at the reserve at about 12.30, a cracking place with mature woodland serounding a large saltmarsh, we was hoping for too see some late Redstarts or Wood Warblers but the woods were deadly quiet, only Great Tits, Long Tailed Tits and a solitary Tree Creeper was seen so we headed for one of the hides too scan across the salt marsh and estuary.

In the hide we set up our scopes and started scaning across the salt marsh , 11 Little Egrets , 9 Goosander, 3 Ringed Plover, large numbers of Cormorant and a Grass Snake that swam across the small pool infront of us but not alot else.

So with a 3 hour drive back home a head of us we decided to head back home.

Another Clamtastic day - Clam on !


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