A Lockdown Twitch Within Five Miles For A Beautiful Bird 22 June 2020

This beautiful Rose-coloured Starling was at Rhos-on-Sea and what a stunner!

As we have said many times in this bird blog you never know with birds what will turn up next! Late June is a fairly quiet time for bird migration and our recent walks on the Great Orme have produced very few new migrants. Late afternoon we were at home thinking about the next meal when news from Robin Sandham, a local birder, had us in a panic. Robin had been out looking for Rose-coloured Starlings around his local area, given the influx of these birds in the UK in recent weeks, and amazingly had found one! Now in Wales we are still under strict lockdown so only allowed to travel a maximum of five miles from home, thankfully the bird was within that distance a Rhos-on-Sea.

Grab binoculars and camera and out the door and east along the promenade and past the Little Orme to Rhos-on-Sea. Arriving at the seafront where Robin had seen the bird coming to a feeder right by the road we spotted another friend Dylan also come for the Rosy Starling. Jumping out we were greeted with “no sign of it” not good news. Robin then appeared having been for a wander around the nearby streets but again “no sign of it”. There a good few Common Starlings coming and going at the garden feeders which were well stocked with food. So we stood on the opposite side of the road and checked each new Starling that came to feed. Then we were joined more friends Tom, Caroline and their very keen birder son Levi, they also live close by and were keen to see this rarity. When we keen that is an understatement in Levi’s case he was literally bouncing with excitement at the prospect of seeing a new birds and wonderful to see his passion for birds. We were a tiny worried that he would be really disappointed if the bird had moved on, it was looking that way sadly. But Levi was not deterred and was scanning the roof tops and checking every bird that moved, but no luck.

The lady of the house with the feeders arrived home and was staring at us in a pretty unfriendly way so we moved away so not in her sight line but still able to see the feeders and roof tops above where Starlings were landing. Tom was “volunteered” being a really nice bloke to pop over and explain what we were doing and reassure the lady we were not up to no good. Sadly even Tom’s friendly reassuring approach was swept aside and she didn’t want us there. So we moved a bitter further back but still able to see the feeders but not here house at all.

Huge thrill when the Rose-coloured Starling in and landed on the chimmney!

More Common Starlings came and went, we were all getting hungry and conversation was more about food than birds then it was there! Rose-coloured Starling flying towards the garden with a gang of Common Starlings Levi was on it in a flash! Lifer and he was so, so excited lovely to see his pleasure and we all joined in with the excitement. The pink and glossy black rarity landed on the chimney posts of the house with the feeders and at first all we could see was its crested head, but it soon moved so we could see that glorious pink body and pink tipped bill what a stunner! Then the Rose-coloured Starling moved onto the roof to join some twenty Common Starlings sheltering from the stiff wind and here we all enjoyed super views of this stunning visitor from the east. Levi was ecstatic it and literally dancing around with happiness! This is what birds and birdwatching can do for us and it’s wonderful, pick up your binoculars and enjoy birds! Amazingly this is the third time an adult Rose-coloured Starling has turned up in this very same Rhos-on-Sea small garden with previous records in 2012 and 2015!

Happy people - Tom, Alan, Levi and Caroline all smiles - birds are good for you!

We are so lucky to have so many species and habitats within easy reach here in North Wales, and once the world returns to normal, we would love you to join us for one of our Best of North Wales Birdwatching Trips days out. We expect to enjoy a lot of birds during these relaxed pace tours and we can tailor make the day to suit you.

We would love you to join us on our Birdwatching Trips in the future just drop us a line to arrange a custom tour and please see our tours pages for set departure trips. If you have any questions at all please fire away here….


We look forward to enjoying wonderful birds in beautiful places with you soon!

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