Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Black Scoter @ Black Rock Sands

Hi all, sorry for the late post about this - I didn't have time earlier between getting in from work, having tea and going straight out to BBG!

I was passing Black Rock at lunch time and decided to call in to make the most of the high tide and calm weather.  I viewed from the west end of the beach (Criccieth end) and most of the birds were close in.  After good views of 5 Long-tailed Ducks I was scanning through the many Common Scoter to see if there were any Velvets or Surfs in the mix when I was stopped dead in my tracks by a drake scoter with a chunky blob of orange/yellow on its bill, just before it dived.  I waited for it to resurface to check it wasn't just a 'funny' Common and after longer views was happy to phone it out to Alan and Marc as a Black.  It was one of the closer birds to shore, often staying on its own, but occasionally chased about by drake Commons.  It was also keen on displaying to a female Common, who seemed to be enjoying the attention, which raises some interesting questions about possible hybrids!

I managed a few very much record shots using my phone handheld to the scope:


  1. Cracking bird! Hybrids or female blacks ? That would be a challenge! Well done Chris.

  2. Don't even go there Kev! It's difficult enough to get a half decent view of a scoter in North Wales without throwing that cat amongst the pigeons :-)