Custom Day Trip For Two Best Of Anglesey Birdwatching Trips Tour 13 November 2021

Snow Bunting Kinmel Bay 1

A Snow Bunting was a wonderful surprise on our Anglesey custom tour for two.

We picked up John and Christina from The Empire Hotel here in Llandudno at 8.30 am, allowing them time to enjoy a lovely breakfast custom tours are made for our guests. We had arrived a little early and had spotted a beautiful male Sparrowhawk in a hawthorn bush above the hotel. We set up the telescope in the street getting some odd looks from passers-by and hoped the bird would stay put. Luckily when John and Christina came out this beautiful bird of prey was frame filling in the scope what a lovely start to the day.

Red-billed Chough love to fly and ride the up-drafts along the cliffs - superb.

We then headed for Anglesey and straight to RSPB South Stack where it was calm and overcast a real contrast to our last visit when it was blowing a gale. A good number of birds were on the move despite the late date with flocks of Meadow Pipits flying over along with a few Chaffinches, two big flocks of Woodpigeon amongst which we picked out three Stock Doves – first time we have seen this locally scarce species at South Stack. But most surprising was a high flying Great Northern Diver that headed out west over our heads! We had superb prolonged views of a Peregrine Falcon on the cliff top and watched Red-billed Chough swoop through the air – they always look like they love to fly. A Kestrel posed outside the visitor centre along with Stonechats and a cuppa was very welcome.

Pale-bellied Brent Geese all the way from the Canadian Arctic an amazing journey.

Next stop was at Holyhead Harbour where the calm water enabled to pick out a Red-throated Diver which we enjoyed lovely views of and then a Common Guillemot which surprisingly was in breeding plumage. At nearby Beddmanarch Bay we did some “speed birding” as time was ticking towards our table booked for lunch! The bay had so many birds it was difficult to know where to look. Pale-bellied Brent Geese were feeding close to our position along with beautiful Shelduck and flocks of Wigeon. Waders included the expected Curlew, Oystercatchers and Common Redshank along with Knot, Dunlin, Grey Plover and an unexpected Greenshank – wonderful.

A delicious lunch went down very well indeed at “Catch 22” in nearby Valley and then we checked the nearby flooded field. This small wet area had plenty of birds and we enjoyed frame filling looks at a flock of Black-tailed Godwits along with Gadwall, Shoveler and Teal.

Another real wow moment when a Short-eared Owl floated into view such a beautiful bird.

We then headed north to Cemlyn Lagoon where we spent the rest of the day enjoying a fantastic array of wonderful birds. The lagoon held a gang of five Goldeneye and five Red-breasted Mergansers. We met local birders Tony and Derek and they told us of a Snow Bunting on the west side of Cemlyn Bay, a rare bird and one we would love to see. We set off to look for the bunting but got distracted by a wonderful Great Northern Diver in Cemlyn Bay along with several Red-throated Divers. Back to the bunting hunt and at first no sign of the visitor from the Arctic but we did have wonderful close views of Ringed Plover, Dunlin and Ruddy Turnstones. Then Ruth spotted the Snow Bunting on the beach ahead of us but no sooner seen it flew behind some rocks very close to us. We crept forward very slowly and there it was! A beautiful Snow Bunting showing off so close just fantastic! We enjoyed this gorgeous bird for a long time and then crept away leaving it to feed. Out on the headland we watched Gannets offshore and then spotted a lovely flock of Golden Plover on the rocks some three hundred of these wonderful waders. While watching the Golden birds we noticed a Grey Plover on the rocks in the foreground and focussed the scope on that wader and we were all delighted to see a Purple Sandpiper appear in the same scope view as the Grey Plover fantastic! More scanning produced at least five Purple Sandpipers on the rocks below us tricky to spot as they blend in so well. What a wonderful afternoon and we headed back to the car park but there was more excitement in store. As we were about to get into the car park a beautiful Short-eared Owl appeared over the adjacent field and showed off backwards and forwards over the area a real wow moment! Elated by our owl encounter we headed for home but had only gone a few hundred yards when Alan was shouting “Kingfisher!” amazing this gem of a bird was on a fence post by the side of the lagoon really close to the road yet another wow!

A really fun day with some very unexpected bird sightings but that is the beauty of watching birds you never really know what you might see! Every day is different and exciting and also always learning too. We do hope John and Christina can join us again to enjoy more wonderful birds and bring their luck with them!

We would love to put together a custom Birdwatching Trips tour perfect for you please just drop us a line and we can do the rest…

We look forward to enjoying great birds and wildlife with you soon.

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