Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Sun, Sea, Chips and s*** me it's a shortie

Over the last few days the weather has been absolutely atrocious in North wales! Waking up this morning, it was a nice surprise to see the sun shining and cloudless blue skies all around.. Spending the morning in lectures and then having a practical in the module - 'Practical Conservation and Ecology' involving the whole class splitting up into groups and observing taxi registration numbers throughout the whole of Bangor as part of a mark and recapture report, I had had enough by lunchtime and met up with Zac down in Bangor harbour for some birding and to see if I could pick up a few yearticks along the way..

Down in Porth Penrhyn, we found a section of beach where we had a quick scan around! The next thing we know, a large flock of Oystercatcher and Dunlin flush from a nearby embankment and a raptor is in hot pursuit of the flock.. A quick look and bluddy hell - it was a Short-Eared Owl!! With this strange sighting, we queried ourselves as to whether or not it was a winter migrant?!

Photographed by Zac Hinchcliffe

Basing ourselves on a wall down by the boat yard in Bangor harbour, a Peregrine Falcon shot through low, right in-front of us, spooking everything in sight. Next was an Adult Mediterranean Gull that Zac spotted in the harbour. Great stuff!

Alex Jones soon joined us in the harbour on his way home from lectures, he too enjoyed this beautiful adult gull unfortunately with no darvic on!

Other birds seen on our 4 hour break include:-
- 7 Pale-Bellied Brent Geese
- 25+ Common Scoter
- 6 Goldeneye
- 1 Rock pipit
During our break, we also managed to observe 10 ringed Redshank which were more than likely birds we had ringed through SCAN.
Seeing as though Zac had his Canon 40D camera with him and his lense, I had a mess around at some photography as I shall be buying his 30D camera soon..
Here are some of my efforts from today..

Whilst we were down in the harbour we observed 2 foreign ringed Black-headed gulls, however we are missing a few digits from both birds, so we will be back down in the harbour tomorrow morning to finish off the job. This evening we spent our time down at Tesco in Bangor in search of a Pied wagtail roost. To finish a great day off, we found the roost which contained between 100-120 birds so hopefully we will try and have a ringing session in the few weeks and see if we can catch a few, so I will keep you posted on this in due course.. Cheers for now!


  1. Errr language Christopher!! :-)

  2. you are inviteed to follow my blog

  3. Hi! my first here in your blog. I have had nothing to do with birds in the way you do. All I do is watch them fly above or perch on a branch of this tree just outside my house. I don't know their names but simply love to listen to their chirping early mornings. They're beautiful creatures! Thanks for telling me more about them.

    Have a lovely day. God bless.

  4. Hi Steve,

    Many thanks for following my blog and I shall take a look at yours soon. I hope you continue to enjoy my ringing and birding exploits throughout the rest of the year.

    Best wishes Chris

  5. Hi Ellen!

    Many thanks for following my blog and it is great to here that you have a keen interest in birds also. They are gorgeous little creatures aren't they. I hope you continue to enjoy my ringing exploits..

    Kind Regards Chris