A Walk At RSPB Conwy Produces A Wonderful Array Of Birds 29 July 2021

RSPB Conwy July 2013

RSPB Conwy a man made place for birds and nature right by the busy A55 road - gives us hope.

We are sometimes asked for half day Birdwatching Trips and must admit we usually shy away from these as in reality they take up a full day! But we thought we would advertise a few half days and see what the response was and thought it might be a great way to introduce people to birds and guided bird watching. We met Andrew and Christine at RSPB Conwy car park at 9.30am on a blustery day with dark clouds threatening but it wasn’t raining, yet. Andrew and Christine live locally and had fairly recently got into watching birds, it all began with a Goldfinch in the garden. So many of us can relate to that, Ruth was struck by the bird watching bug when she watched Bullfinches from her window as a child and many of my earliest bird memories are of birds seen in and around the garden.

Lapwing RSPB Conwy 3

Northern Lapwing a beautiful wader that we enjoyed close views of on our walk.

At the viewpoint alongside the coffee shop we watched an adult Little Grebe diving for food and then feeding a fairly small youngster. We did worry that the water level was so low in the pool the young grebe might not have enough food hopefully today’s rain might help? A Northern Lapwing was feeding very close to our position so close in fact it was often hidden by the reeds below us.

Great and Little Egret Conwy 1

Great to see Great Egrets alongside Little Egrets such a difference!

From the viewing screen off the boardwalk we enjoyed wonderful views of two Great Egrets – once a major rarity here now an almost regular visitor to the reserve, I drove from Conwy to Cornwall to see my first Great Egret – could have just waited! Plenty of Little Egrets here along with a juvenile Grey Heron and more Lapwings this time in full view feeding at the edge of the lagoon. We also spent some time comparing the various “brown” ducks here. By looking carefully we picked out Eurasian Wigeon, Shoveler, Teal, Gadwall and Mallard – late July is a tough time to identify ducks as they are in moult and the drakes tend to look very like the brown females. Structure and the colour of the wing are key features when trying to sort out “brown” ducks and it is always fun to work through a group and figure out how species are “hiding” in full view.

From the Tal-y-Fan hide we had a good view of the two lagoons and the castle at Conwy with the mountains of Snowdonia beyond a fabulous setting for a reserve. The wind was near gale force here and made keeping the binoculars and telescopes still very tricky but we battled on. A large flock of Common Redshank were on the lagoon and sad to see them flushed by a group of Nordic Walkers that climbed up on to the bank of the lagoon off the path all dressed in hi-vis colours sending the waders into panic when they should be at a place where they can rest undisturbed – one of the main reasons for making the lagoons a nature reserve. A single Greenshank was also flushed by the walkers and luckily for us it landed nearby allowing super looks at this graceful wader. Ruth picked out a breeding plumaged Dunlin feeding along the edge of an island and this followed by a Spotted Redshank amongst a gang of Common Redshank – a good selection of waders for July.

We walked as far as the south end of the reserve where we watched Tufted Ducks including a female with seven well grown young and more wonderful views of Lapwings but the Redshank flock was now out of view. The wind was so strong we decided to retrace our steps back to the visitor centre rather than battle along the estuary track as we had planned.

The feeders in the wildlife garden, as we walked back, were busy and we watched Greenfinches feeding with Great and Blue Tits and Dunnocks below the feeders. All in all a really lovely walk with great company many thanks Andrew and Christine for a really lovely morning. If you would like to arrange a half day bird walk please just drop us a line by email, address below.

Of course a wonderful way to see more birds is to join one of our Birdwatching Trips and learn a lot about the birds you are enjoying too. We have tours suitable for all from beginners to experienced birders that are seeking particular species. Just drop us a line here and we can arrange a perfect custom tour for you!


We look forward to enjoying wonderful birds with you soon.

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