Saturday, 13 April 2013

Could spring have arrived?

Well, its been a decent couple of days on the island, although the weather has finally caved in this afternoon. Yesterday was an excellent day (see below), although most of the migrants had passed on through by this morning. Nevertheless, a Lapland Bunting in the North-West Fields was new for the year, and a stunning male Ring Ouzel and a Yellowhammer were also noteworthy. A good movement of over 150 Meadow Pipits was observed, with birds coming in off the sea from the West (probably Ireland) and heading North-east towards the mainland.

On to yesterday...

A day of intense ringing and birding saw the year's first large arrival of spring migrants, with good numbers grounded in the drizzly rain that settled over the island in the early hours,
A superb female Hawfinch was the star of the day: first found in Ty Pellaf garden mid-morning, the bird then relocated to Cristing garden, where it found its way into one of the open mist nets.

On the rest of the bird front, a Firecrest was trapped at Cristin in the morning, and threeJack Snipe were seen in the wetlands, one of which was caught with a hand net! The Hooded Crow remained in the North-west Fields.
Visible migration  was in real evidence in the morning, dominated by over 780 Redwings which flew over in flocks of up to 200 birds. 59 Fieldfares also flew overhead, along with four Sand Martins, 15 Swallows, a Skylark, 191 Meadow Pipits, the first Brambling of the year, eight Greenfinches, five Siskins, 26 Goldfinches, a Lesser Redpoll and a Reed Bunting.
The second Ring Ouzel of the year arrived into Traeth Ffynnon, and other new thrushes included a Mistle Thrush, 36 Blackbirds and 17 Song Thrushes. Four White Wagtails were seen in Solfach, and 30 Wheatears were present around the coast.
Phylloscs were represented in large numbers, 182 Willow Warblers and 132 Chiffchaffs. At least 116 Goldcrests were also seen in the island's gardens and around the coast, along with 15 Blackcaps.

In terms of ringing, an excellent total of over 160 birds were ringed during the day. 120 alone were trapped at Nant in a few hours.

Apologies for the overlapping!

23rd Hawfinch for Bardsey
 ''Don't mess with me!!''
 Awesome primaries
Stunning male Ring Ouzel
 This superb Jack Snipe was spotted on the ground in the Ty-Pellaf Wetlands in the early morning. Staying exactly where it was first found, a hand net was shortly placed on top of the bird, resulting in the year's fifth bird to be ringed!
 A couple of the Song Thrushes were continental birds
Willow Warblers


  1. Nice one Ben. Its meant to be spring alright but not sure what's going on! Good one with the Jacksnipe. Must be really reluctant to flush.

  2. Cracking day yesterday Ben- great photos!