Saturday, 13 April 2013

Great Orme migrants - April 13th. Here they come!

Many more birds on the Great Orme this morning. Highlight of the morning were excellent point blank views of a Grasshopper Warbler in the dead bracken behind the churchyard. Five Tree Pipits 'buzzed' overhead during the morning with one grounded bird also behind the churchyard. Northern Wheatears were on the move with several waves of birds appearing. At least 50 birds were present, possibly many more. Amongst them were a couple of fine Greenland birds, stunning in the early morning sunshine. 500+ Meadow Pipits were present with birds seemingly everywhere at times. A nice movement of 25+ Goldcrests were on the headland with several birds making their way along the stone wall and most gorse bushes containing at least one bird. The first hirundines of the year up here consisted of six Swallows through and a couple of Sand Martins. Four Redwing, 2 Fieldfare and 3 presumed 'continental' Song Thrushes were resting before flying high in to the sky and continuing on their journey. Three Willow Warblers were new in and were joined by a few singing Chiff-chaffs. A White Wagtail was picked out amongst the six Pied Wagtails seen while a few Redpoll and Siskin passed overhead.

A Golden Plover called over head and presumably came down in the sheep fields, while a male Yellowhammer flew west without stopping. Two lovely Black Guillemots were close in below the cliffs and look set to breed. 15 Magpies were possibly migrants as were the 24 Woodpigeon, 2 Mistle Thrushes and 2 Collared Dove flying west. Surprise of the mornings sessions was a female Pheasant lurking deep in a gorse bush at the north end. Where had it come from or going to?

 Looks like Black Guillemots are breeding once again on the Great Orme with up to three pairs being seen below the lighthouse area this week. The two above were seen from the limestone pavements and could be picked out at some distance.
I didn't expect this beady eye peering back at me as I peered into a gorse bush on the limestone pavements. I have seen the odd one in the farm area of the Orme but can't ever recall seeing one on the limestones. I later flushed it again from the bracken above the churchyard. Had it 'come in off the sea'? !!l 


  1. Regarding the question had the Pheasant come in off the sea? The answer is "no"!

  2. Steve- it was a vagrant from Anglesey!

  3. Maybe. Did you collect any poo? ;-)