Sunday, 21 February 2010

Kinmel Bay .....Snow to finish!

The middle of the day didn't entirely go to plan! It was looking good when a stop at Pensarn yielded 100's of Common Scoters, a group of 3 Velvet Scoters at least three Red-throated Divers and a few Red-breasted Mergansers. No sign of Surf Scoter though and a long-tailed Duck seen earlier in the day had drifted/flown out of view!

The Hawfinch at Llanbedr-y-Cennin had also deserted their normal feeding areas (now under a carpet of snow!) An hour was more than enough time lost here. A quick look at Caerhun, (well, never really expected them to be there either!) and looking down on the banks of the Conwy, a Greenshank added, in amongst other waders....

Preferring a 'safe bet' next, we decided to give the Snow Buntings another go and boy oh boy - right decision!

Kinmel Bay take 2 then! It was nearly a disaster as they were feeding on the rivermouth tide-line debris on arrival and promptly flew off again!. We caught up with them further up the beach and got one or two (record) shots before lady luck then took over....

After flying for the 'fourth' time, this time they circled and landed - within 10m!!








Of course it didn't last and off they went - back towards the river mouth! Watching them from the dunes, we could see they were following a fairly straight line directly towards a few tussocks in front of an old wooden breakwater. We nipped down behind this and waited......






It didn't take long before we had four Snow Buntings in view and all within a 20m zone - aware of us but totally confiding now!






On the boulders.....






Finally - what we were waiting for - they started feedind on the grass seed. Fantastic to watch and almost like Bearded Tits in their manner, arching the grass stems and feasting on the small seeds therein!

A few wing flaps to help maintain balance....










On occasions - two birds within the field of view!










My favourite portraits (in no particular order)!

feeding.....








posing....








Eventually with the light fading, we had a all too late stab at the Gronant Shore Lark. We walked the boardwalk and had a quick search of the tideline to no avail. Oh well, a good excuse for another day in the area??

If you want to see more of these obliging Snow Buntings - have a look here here

No comments:

Post a Comment