Monday, 19 December 2011

Our Weekend at Porthmadog Cob

We were delighted with the number of people who turned up; a big Cymdeithas Ted Breeze Jones group on Saturday had the worst of the weather (wintry squalls of hail) but it’s their local patch and they’d seen plenty of birds before they reached our trailer.
On Saturday we had great views of Wigeon and Teal in front of the hide; the water then gradually rose once the sluices at the other end of the Cob closed, and the trapped Glaslyn water backed up! Most of the ducks then departed.

The next morning at 1030 the water was lower and some waders were in front of the hide, including Black-tailed Godwits, Dunlin and Redshank. Watchers from the hide also had superb views of the wintering ducks including Shoveler, Wigeon, Teal & Mallard, plus the odd Goldeneye and a Red-breasted Merganser.

The North Wales Wildlife Trust trailer made an excellent base for getting out of the wind, dispensing drinks and soup, and providing information about NWWT and also the BTO – Kelvin Jones from the new BTO office in Bangor was there to help both days. Short journey for him as he lives in Tremadog.

The Godwit photo was taken in Holland a few years ago, and shows birds in breeding plumage. At least you can see the long bill and very long legs. These Dutch birds winter further south, whereas the wintering birds in Britain breed in Iceland. Most of the ducks mentioned above breed in Scandinavia or even further away, in Russia.

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