Robins, Redwings and rain – three words that sum up this past weekend perfectly.

I spent both Saturday and Sunday at the local WWT reserve near Llanelli, partly due to the fact that I needed to be in range of home for work commitments but mostly because it’s been such a long time since I have properly explored its pools and marshes. To my surprise it was remarkably warm for the time of year with temperatures peaking at sixteen Celsius, but even that couldn’t make up for the sheets of rain that kept blowing in off the Burry. Fortunately the sun battled its way through the clouds on Sunday just long enough to illuminate this friendly Robin.

25243 - Robin, Llanelli WWT
25244 - Robin, Llanelli WWT

With most of the trees now bereft of their leaves it is once again easier to find and observe many of our woodland birds. The reserves plantations were crawling with Goldcrests who appear to have had a particularly good year as well as passing flocks of Long Tailed Tits and the occasional Bullfinch. A Treecreeper was also a nice find given that we haven’t seen one there for some time. I was pleased to see that the autumn migrants have started to arrive with at least eight Redwings spotted across both days. Relatively tame in the depths of winter they are currently very skittish and fled at the merest hint of a human approach. They are definitely my target species over the next couple of months as I have yet to get a decent photograph of one despite trying for the past two years. Wish me luck.

25247 - Tufted Duck, Llanelli WWT

Out on the pools waterfowl numbers are really starting to build with at least 215 Wigeon and 25 Shoveller present. Shellduck numbers were also pretty good as were Teal, but surprisingly there were very few Gadwall. They are normally a mainstay at the reserve so it was slightly bemusing to see so few. What was impressive though was the number of Pintails in front of the Heron Wing Hide. I normally count one or two as a good effort but on both days there were upwards of 72, a personal record for me which has been eclipsed today be a warden count of 124. Very nice indeed.

25248 - Coot, Llanelli WWT

Bad weather and high tides meant that water levels were high across the site, somewhat limiting feeding opportunities for waders. 51 Black Tailed Godwits and a Greenshank from the British Steel Hide were as good as things got, not forgetting the single Dunlin which is a species I haven’t recorded there all that often. If the promised cold weather ever gets here this great start should get even better.


22 Comments

Bob Bushell · November 1, 2011 at 9:28 pm

Aren't they so beautiful, its the way you take them.

TexWisGirl · November 1, 2011 at 9:51 pm

your robin is spectacular! adorable birds! and the coot's feet always freak me out a bit – looks like he's wearing silvery smelt-like fish for feet!

theconstantwalker · November 1, 2011 at 10:23 pm

Wonderful images to see…

Springman · November 2, 2011 at 3:25 am

Nice going Adam!
When I see a really great bird photo I make a little noise that sounds like I've just had a taste of some fantastic apple pie. Ummm!
I just made that noise four times. The robins are over the top! Most appreciated.
Bravo!

Martha Z · November 2, 2011 at 4:37 am

I love the robin, very different that the bird that goes by that name in the US. Maybe your gadwalls emigrated, I saw lots of them while birding in the Sacramento Valley 😉

mick · November 2, 2011 at 7:22 am

Great photos – especially the robin. It's interesting to hear how the birds are changing with the arrival of colder weather.

Arija · November 2, 2011 at 9:06 am

I love your friendly robins. They are so like our flame robin females. Beautiful shots all round.

Stewart M · November 2, 2011 at 9:11 am

Hi there – good luck with the Redwings! I once spent two days involved in trying to trap them for ringing – not very successfully I must add!

Nice to see some birds from my old stamping ground.

Cheers – Stewart M -Australia

eileeninmd · November 2, 2011 at 9:28 am

Beautiful robin and great shots. Awesome duck capture and I love the coot. Great birds and good luck. Happy Birding!

Unknown · November 2, 2011 at 10:32 am

The reflection of the duck is lovely. Tufted ducks are my favourite duck species.

Unknown · November 2, 2011 at 12:27 pm

Your robins are beautiful. All great shots Adam. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

holdingmoments · November 2, 2011 at 12:48 pm

Cracking set Adam.
I love that shot of the Coot.

Liz · November 2, 2011 at 4:21 pm

Great shots!! Love the little Robin!

joo · November 2, 2011 at 6:57 pm

They are so lovely, especially Robins:)

Chronicles of Illusions · November 2, 2011 at 9:46 pm

all of these are great shots – hard to pick one I like more than the others

jeanlivingsimple · November 3, 2011 at 1:18 am

Sweet shots! I really enjoyed your Robin.

Sondra · November 3, 2011 at 1:47 am

Fantastic photos Adam…you really captured these birds perfectly….I LOVE THE FEET incredible!!

NatureFootstep · November 3, 2011 at 8:31 am

the little Robin is one of my favorites but I did not see much of them this year. So I am glad to see your shots. 🙂

Pat Ulrich · November 3, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Great shots, Adam! The duck is especially lovely!

Brian King · November 4, 2011 at 1:13 am

Fantastic close-up's, Adam! Nice job!

Larry · November 5, 2011 at 2:42 pm

Awesome photos Adam! I love your Robins but for some reason, that Coot photo really intrigues me. It sounds like a great day all in all! Good luck with the Redwings, you'll get it!

Adam Tilt · November 7, 2011 at 9:31 pm

Thanks everyone for your very kind comments. Definitely something with which to brighten these dark winter evenings.

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