I have seen a lot of people talk about how good Cosmeston lakes are so I decided to take the trip over on what turned out to be one of the coldest days of the year so far. It took twenty minutes to get into the car after freezing rain had completely encased the car in ice. I couldnt even move the door handle let alone try and prize the door open! Cosmeston lakes used to be a limestone quarry before closing and being used as a land fill site for the surrounding area. However, you wouldn’t believe it these days after seeing how well the site has been regenerated into a lush and green landscape.

The main point of interest at the site over the last week or so has been a single male Bearded Tit who has taken up residence in the reeds just beyond the visitor centre. The bird has been very obliging allowing some excellent photography opportunities. Unfortunately he was not showing at all when I was around, being kept low down in the reeds by the very cold conditions. Not to worry though as a Cettis Warbler was in the same area offering excellent views sometimes as close as a meter.

Elsewhere on the lakes the usual assortment of waterfowl were present including three Great Crested and four Little Grebes. There were also a large number of Mute Swans and a couple of Canada Geese clearly waiting to be fed. The highlight though was the large number of Redwings that were present in numerous locations affording outstanding views. Only when you see these birds close up can you really appreciate quite how elegant they are. Over on the east lake a single Fieldfare was also seen. The thrush trilogy was finished off nicely by three or four Song Thrushes out on the old landfill site.

Sunday was mostly used up for more mundane tasks but I did manage a quick trip down to the Gower. I was rather surprised to park up next to a first winter Mediterranean Gull in a Mumbles car park where I had headed to have lunch. Over the summer I saw several adult birds in the general area so does this mean that they have bred? I’m not too sure but if you do know then please let me know. Further along the coast at Port Eynon a good number of Ringed Plovers were feeding along the beach along with a few Oystercatchers and Curlews.

This weekend also saw me purchase my new camera after much musing and browsing of reviews online. I have gone for a Panasonic Lumix FZ28 with an 18x optical zoom. The result is that I should hopefully be able to start posting many more photos up on this blog and the main part of the site.


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