Winter on the Burry Inlet

Wednesday, December 29, 2010 Adam Tilt 0 Comments


After two days of drizzle the snow is completely gone and the temperature has shot up to the heady heights of almost eight degrees. With continuous showers sweeping across the hills the best option for today was to carry out a bit of car bird watching along the Burry Inlet. First stop was Penclawdd where a Moorhen was an usual find feeding with two male and one female Gadwall. Redshank numbers reached well over fifty with similar numbers of Dunlin, Curlew and Black Tailed Godwit. A pair of Shovellers and fifty three Shellduck were out on the marsh whilst a flock of over four hundred Wigeon were frequently up in the air. Being restricted to the car meant that I actually had time to count the Oystercatchers resulting in a final score of nine hundred and thirty birds. 

I was very happy to finally see the overwintering Brent Goose population as twenty six birds flew upstream towards Loughor. I'm not sure where exactly they were headed but I haven't seen them go that far up the estuary before. Other star birds included the seven male and three female Pintail that were snoozing out on the mud and the single Grey Plover which was a first for me on Gower.

Our other stop was at Llanrhidian Marsh where I was hoping to film some video of Hen Harriers. Unfortunately the birds and the weather were against us with just a single sighting of one female before the mist and rain descended and set in for the rest of the afternoon. We tried to stick it out but were only rewarded with a couple of Little Egrets and a Grey Heron. I'm hoping for some more favorable conditions before the Harriers leave us once more as I'd love to improve on my somewhat shaky efforts from last year. That's unlikely to be anytime this week however as the forecast is for more rain and cloud meaning that my camera is likely to remain safely tucked away.

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