RSPB Conwy Early Morning Walk At Low Tide 28 July 2022

Conwy Valley Sept 1

An early morning visit to the local patch - RSPB Conwy - produced a lot of birds.

Ruth was up early to be at Holyhead for 7am this morning to meet guests visiting North Wales from a cruise ship docked at the harbour. Alan of course was up early too so after dropping Ruth off for her lift in Llandudno headed for RSPB Conwy.

We make most of our visits to the reserve at high tide as that is usually the best time to see the maximum number of birds here. The high tide covers the extensive mudflats pushing the birds on to the lagoons of the reserve where they roost until the tide drops allowing them to feed on the exposed mud again. However, today’s visit was timed to drop Ruth off and the tide was so far out.

Curlew Norfolk 2016 1

So wonderful to hear the calls of Eurasian Curlew over the still estuary this morning.

Still always great to be out looking at birds whatever the tide so Alan set up his scope by the entrance to the reserve and scanned the huge expanse of mud and sand that was the Conwy Estuary adjacent to the reserve. Two birds were very easy to see, huge Great Egrets that strode through the shallows towering over their small cousins – Little Egrets. Oystercatchers, Curlew and Common Shelduck were also out on the “empty” estuary.

Heading into the reserve a Blackcap “tack-tacked” from the willows where two Reed Warblers clambered about. At the viewing screen off the boardwalk a single Eurasian Teal fed on the near enough dry mud along with lots of Pied Wagtails – the reserve is in desperate need of water.

From the Tal-y-Fan at least there was some water visible all be it at the lowest ever level since the reserve opened over 25 years ago, a sad sight. Here two Common Sandpipers bobbed along the dry mud bordering the shrinking lagoons. A small flock of Common Redshank dozed on the rocks a little unusual for them to be on the lagoon when the tide was far out, perhaps living is easy in July so no need to rush off to feed?

Nearing the next hide, the Carneddau hide, a warbler flew ahead and luckily landed on a dead branch in full view – Lesser Whitethroat – wow first of the year and easily the latest date for seeing one in a year ever! From the hide nice views were had of a beautiful breeding-plumaged Black-tailed Godwit, a Eurasian Wigeon resident on the reserve, both Great crested and Little Grebes.

Taking the Ganol Trail towards the estuary plenty to see with highlights including juvenile Bullfinch, Great spotted Woodpecker, Common Whitethroat and female Pheasant with young.

At the estuary the tide was still way out but a Whimbrel fed close to the path and was close to a Eurasian Curlew for nice comparison between these similar looking birds. Suddenly all the gulls were up in alarm and frantic scanning of the sky paid off – a juvenile Peregrine Falcon swept over the mudflats and landed on a sandbar but by now a long way away. A pair of Oystercatchers had their two well grown young in their usual spot on the saltmarsh – wonderful to see them nest successfully.

The circular walk around RSPB Conwy had take an hour and forty minutes and had produced 56 species of birds – very well worth while indeed. If you would like to join us a walk around RSPB Conwy or for a day trip or a longer Birdwatching Trips tour just drop us a line. Our custom tours designed just how you want them are proving very popular indeed just email us and we can do the rest.

To book your custom tour or any of our set departure trips please email us here….

We can then make all the arrangements for your perfect Birdwatching Trips tour.

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