Two New Birds For Our Lockdown Birding List Today 6 June 2020

Gannets in a row over sea 1

Gannets seen from the window here in Llandudno was a good sign this morning.

Our view from our window is amazing and this morning with a northerly gale blowing and driving rain it was not at its best but we could see Gannets! The sea was pounding against the promenade at Llandudno North Shore and these huge seabirds were making their west along the North Wales coast and being pushed close to the beach by the storm.

Soon after noticing the Gannets the rain eased and it seemed a good idea to try doing some sea-watching from the Great Orme. The Marine Drive, that follows the coastline of the headland, provides great views from the car over the sea. Parking below the church and scanning the sea it was immediately obvious that many birds were moving over the rough sea. Gannets were sweeping low over the waves and lots of Common Guillemots and Razorbills were also on the move along with small numbers of Kittiwakes and Fulmars. Within a minute a new bird for lockdown, and a year tick, as a Manx Shearwater flew low over the sea not so far out, brilliant! These wonderful sea-birds breed, in huge numbers, on Bardsey Island off the west coast of North Wales but we don’t see many from the Great Orme usually. It wasn’t long before another Manx Shearwater moved west and then another, then a group of four, it was soon obvious that a big movement was underway. In just under an hour 79 of these wonderful birds swept past the Great Orme. Gannets, Auks and Kittiwakes were passing almost constantly this type of sea-watching is brilliant – always birds in view and that hope that something a bit more unusual might come past at any time. A few heavy showers rattled through and these actually were a good thing as the birds came closer to the cliffs in the reduced visibility and super views of Manx Shearwaters through the rain! Two Common Scoter flew fast west over taking many of the other seabirds. Then a large dark bird was picked up off to the right powering low over the sea, a Great Skua! Wow a very unexpected bird in June off the North Wales coast, should be on breeding grounds in Northern Scotland, a second new lockdown bird and year tick! Didn’t think we would add two new birds to the year list on a wet windy day in early June.

A Great Skua where they should be in June - Handa Island off the north-west coast of Scotland.

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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