Superb Birdwatching Here In North Wales Day 3 Of 3 Day Custom Tour 8 September 2020

Hawfinch Roy de Hass

A day full of fantastic birds including five Hawfinches such beautiful birds.

Day three of Richard and Julie's three day custom Birdwatching Trip tour “Best of North Wales” and we picked them up from their cottage in the Conwy Valley. A beautiful Grey Wagtail showed very well in a small puddle outside the cottage, great start. A short drive took us to lovely spot and we soon saw a stunning male Hawfinch, a real brightly coloured bird, so lucky even if brief views. Lots of other birds here too and it was a case of where to look first. Then Ruth heard an unfamiliar call, more Hawfinches, four of them including two juveniles giving the high pitch unfamiliar call, no wonder we didn’t immediately recognise it! What a fantastic first stop on the last day of the three day custom trip. Also in this wonderful area we enjoyed Goosanders, Lapwings, Mistle Thrushes, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Bullfinch and plenty of Buzzards.

We then headed to an upland forest but the weather rather closed in with low cloud, some drizzle and a stiff breeze, the mugs of hot chocolate went down well. We did have good looks at Goldcrests and Coal Tits along with Great Spotted Woodpecker, Nuthatches, Jays, Chiffchaff and more Buzzards.

A mind-blowing encounter with the "Vicar Thrush" AKA Ring Ouzel today.

Heading into Snowdonia the weather improved greatly and large patches of blue sky opened above us allowing warm sunshine and we were out of the wind, wonderful. Scanning one our favourite areas we found a gang of six Chough and had great look through the scopes. Ravens and Buzzards were overhead, a Kestrel peered down from a crag and a Sparrowhawk was on a fence post. Then Ruth hit the jackpot with a Ring Ouzel in a Rowan tree on the hillside superb! The scopes were quickly on this wonderful bird though at first it was partly hidden by leaves. Then this “mountain blackbird” flew left and we all thought oh no but as it flew another Ring Ouzel joined it and they landed on a boulder together, now clear views. As we looked through the scopes we saw more Ring Ouzels, four, no hang on seven, then three more above! This was crazy the hillside was alive with Ring Ouzels! Very hard to count as the birds were mobile but some did sit still and allow great scope views such super birds with their vicar’s collars on their chests and pale edges to their flight feathers and the scaly look to the juveniles. Then the Chough were alarm calling loudly and flying over the ouzels and what a shock we had, the Ring Ouzels took flight on mass and we counted a minimum of 24, yes 24, Ring Ouzels flying high above us just a jaw-dropping sight. It is very likely there were even more than 24 of these lovely birds as we only counted ones that broke the skyline above us others could have slipped away against the scree slopes? We were left stunned and elated.

Lunch time and we had a lovely picnic lunch in the warm sunshine at Aber Ogwen watching thousands of birds being pushed closer and closer by the rising tide, perfect timing for our food. So many birds it was another of those where to look times, birds to right of us, birds to the left of us, birds ahead of us, still the tide pushed them closer. Six Greenshank and two Bar-tailed Godwits best of the waders, 56 Little Egrets stood on the beach, some 30 Common Eider were offshore along with Great Crested Grebes, Red-breasted Mergansers and Goosanders. Sandwich Terns were fishing offshore and these were joined by 6 Arctic Terns the birds just kept coming!

Wonderful birds at RSPB Conwy including two Spotted Redshank.

Next we visited RSPB Conwy to see the high tide roost and it proved very rewarding indeed. At the first view point we picked out a Garganey, rare bird here, and had super looks in the sunshine despite the strong wind. Three Great White Egrets were on the shallow lagoon too along with Little Egrets, Common Snipe and a Black-tailed Godwit. On the deep lagoon there was a big flock of Common Redshank and amongst them we picked out two Spotted Redshank and three Dunlin. Then a lovely juvenile Curlew Sandpiper came into view at the left hand end of the roosting waders great to this visitor from Siberia.

Just time to finish the day off with a scenic tour around the Great Orme where the views of Snowdonia and across to Anglesey were simply stunning. Of course we saw some more birds too including Fulmar, Gannet, Kittiwake, Shag and Common Scoter.

What a wonderful end to Richard and Julie’s three day Best of North Wales custom Birdwatching Trips tour. We would love you to join us for your very own custom three day trip which really highlights just what fantastic birds and amazing habitats we have here all within easy reach. Having just two people on the tour also makes it easy to tailor the pace and the birds we look for just for you. We can also arrange accommodation for you locally if needed or just meet us each morning at a pre-arranged pick up point. We are very flexible and are happy to tailor make the experience just for you. Do drop us a line for details of our “Tours for Two” we know you will love them just as much as Richard and Julie did.

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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