Birdwatching in North Wales Find Out More About This Beautiful Area




Red-billed Chough photographed on the Great Orme at Llandudno, North Wales.



The potential for birdwatching in North Wales is quite a well-kept secret and it may not be a destination that’s been on your radar. But maybe 2022 or 2023 is the year to think again. Many people don’t realise the sheer variety of habitat that we’re lucky enough to enjoy in a relatively compact area. From my home in Llandudno halfway along the North Wales coast, I can travel in all directions to visit a wide diversity of habitat, and all within an hour’s drive from home.

Head south down the Conwy Valley and you are soon in the beautiful Snowdonia National Park. Early in the year we can enjoy great views of Goshawks, those elusive wraiths of the forest. In spring and early summer, we head for the oak woodlands in the hanging valleys to look for our classic trio of breeding migrants: Pied Flycatcher, Common Redstart, and Wood Warbler. Go up in altitude and you may be rewarded with a singing Ring Ouzel or a displaying Hen Harrier, special birds that quicken the pulse and make your heart soar.

Head west along the North Wales coast and the coastline attracts plenty of waders and wildfowl during the winter months. Set up your telescope to scan offshore in winter and you are likely to be rewarded with overwintering Red-throated and Great Northern Divers, and Slavonian Grebes. Huge flocks of Common Scoter gather offshore and with good light and a calm sea you may be able to pick out Velvet Scoter or even a bizarrely-billed Surf Scoter amongst the flock.

The beautiful island of Anglesey is another must-visit destination with exciting birding at any time of year. The busy breeding seabird colony draws in plenty of visitors looking for Puffins amongst the massed Razorbills and Guillemots. The distinctive ‘cheeow’ call of the charismatic Chough will make you look up to see this red-billed, red-legged Corvid playing on the air currents with its broad-fingered wings outspread. The tern colony at Cemlyn lagoon draws in not only Sandwich, Common and Arctic Terns but also has the habit of attracting rarities including Bridled, Sooty and Elegant Terns, not to mention plenty of birdwatchers coming to enjoy the sight, sound and smell of this busy colony. Dapper Black Guillemots breed on the island too, a chance to see these smart auks once described by Chris Packham as the bird he would most like to take into a nightclub on his arm! Head east towards the Dee Estuary and you can enjoy masses of overwintering ducks, geese, swans and raptors in season, while in the summer you can visit Wales’s and Britain’s largest Little Tern colony for views of these delightful pocket-sized seabirds.

So, with its wide spectrum of habitat ranging from mountains and moorland, coniferous forests and deciduous woodland, rivers and marshes, coastal cliffs and sandy shorelines, you can see why North Wales can offer so many different species and such exciting birdwatching all year round.

Of course, you may have heard a vicious rumour that it always rains in Wales, but this really isn’t the case. I have heard Llandudno described as the fourth sunniest town in the country, while Porthmadog on the Llyn Peninsula regularly tops the UK temperature charts in summer. And in any case, there’s truth in the saying that there’s no such thing as bad weather, only inadequate clothing!

So, what are you waiting for? Grab your binoculars, thermals, waterproofs and sunscreen and join us in beautiful North Wales. You can be sure of a warm Welsh welcome and a superb birdwatching trip.

Ruth Miller

If you would like details of our upcoming Birdwatching Trips here in North Wales please email us here we would love to help...

info@birdwatchingtrips.co.uk

Come and enjoy the best of North Wales with Birdwatching Trips.





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