Local Patch Birding Today Great Orme And RSPB Conwy 20 July 2020

An early morning walk from home on a lovely sunny day proved very worthwhile indeed at Llandudno Pier a lovely surprise a family of Grey Wagtails! Adults with recently fledged young were feeding on the rocks and beach between the pier and not so Grand Hotel. Considering almost daily visits to this area the whole of the spring and only one previous sighting of a single male Grey Wagtail they had certainly somehow kept under the radar. Amazing to find that a pair of colourful, obvious birds that can be noisy had somehow reared a brood of young very close to this spot without us knowing. Birds are amazing that is for sure.

Reaching the cliffs of the Great Orme we enjoyed superb views of Red-billed Chough over the next hour or so! These beautiful members of the crow family were really in the mood to show off and were in view for much of the walk. A pair of adult Chough landed on the cliff just above the Marine Drive and began preening each other in the morning sun. A wonderful view of these so engaging birds and the sunlight showing of the greens and blues on their “black” feathers their scarlet bills glowing. Just below the Marine Drive their two recently fledged young were busy feeding for themselves digging into the soft cliff edge soil for grubs and totally unconcerned that they were watched.

Harsh calls above announced the appearance of one of the juvenile Peregrine Falcons, the female youngster a big bird already. She seemed in a bad mood screaming and tearing up and down the cliffs at one point chasing another group of Chough but they easily avoided here stoops. Then she flew straight at the cliffs and knocked another Peregrine, the adult male, off his perch! So funny to watch, maybe she was hungry and decided to get dad moving? He certainly flew off towards town at high speed maybe to hunt or maybe for peace?

Great white Egret Conwy 1

Later a visit to nearby RSPB Conwy, where the trails and loos are open even if visitor centre and café still shut sadly. It was high tide so plenty of birds roosting on the lagoons. Two Great White Egrets were resting on one of the islands visible from the Tal-y-Fan hide with a gang of Little Egrets and four Grey Herons. Wonderful to see these heron sized egrets here not so long ago they were very rare in the UK. Now a few pairs are breeding, as close as Cheshire this year. We look forward to seeing these beautiful birds more and more regularly here in North Wales and who knows maybe they will breed with the Grey Herons nearby one day?

A selection of waders were also roosting on the lagoons over the high tide including a Common Sandpiper, a Black-tailed Godwit, a Whimbrel and two Greenshanks along with Curlew, Common Redshank, Lapwing and Oystercatchers. A Red-breasted Merganser was asleep on one of the islands and Swifts whizzed low over the lagoons always a thrill to watch and a sight that will soon be gone as these marvellous birds will soon leave us to winter in Africa enjoy them while you can. Just eight people were encountered on the two mile circular walk around the reserve, one of those a reserve volunteer, seems that visitors need a shop and a café to draw them in? Yet so many birds are here to enjoy and the views across the Conwy Estuary to Snowdonia and Conwy Castle are worth the visit alone.

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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