Wonderfully dark-headed Common Gull that momentarily gave me a fright!Setting off before first light this morning, Matt and I decided to walk to Llanfairfechan and back as part of our Footit challenge. Matt went a couple of days ago and picked up lots of birds that I need and we couldn't allow that!
We arrived at the Spinnies/Aber Ogwen NR just outside Bangor for dawn and almost the first bird I picked up on the sea was a Smew! This is a redhead that was present over the Christmas period that Matt managed to get when he came back to Bangor after the New Year but hadn't been seen since so I was really worried I wouldn't get it on the list. I was very very happy to get this!
Golden Plover was a bird I really didn't think I would get on my Footit list as they are certainly not common on the NW.Wales CoastThe walk between The Spinnies and Abergwyngregyn, I picked up three footit ticks in the form of 10 Golden Plover, 2 Grey Plover and a candidate for the best bird of the day which I noticed calling behind us as we were scanning the Curlew flocks. It was obviously a crest, but it just didn't sound right for Goldcrest as it got 'more excited' as the call progressed. It was in fact a Firecrest! Fantastic! A great bonus for patch and Footit. Matt almost managed to 'grip back' Skylark off me as we were watching and listening for the crest.
1 of 4 Stonechat seen at Morfa Madryn NR. Another bird I didn't think I'd get, so a real bonus!Walking from Morfa to Llanfairfechan, I picked up Stonechat for my Footit which I also believe to be a patch tick as I can't remember ever seeing one along this coast.
Seawatching off Llanfairfechan, we picked up lots of Red-throated Divers, Razorbill, Fulmar which were all ticks as well as 4 Slavonian Grebe.
A fantastic day for the two of us and we are both now on 103 for our patch/footit list.
My 'Footit ticks': Smew, Grey Plover, Golden Plover, Firecrest, Stonechat, Razorbill, Red-throated Diver, Fulmar, Chiffchaff
Matt's 'Footit ticks': Firecrest, Skylark, Razorbill, Fulmar, Chiffchaff.