Monday, December 19, 2005

Divers and Laughing Gull at Porthcawl

With news of divers off Kenfig Sands on Saturday, it seemed a good idea to make a trip down to the coast and see if I could get some better views of the Laughing Gull that is now resident in Porthcawl. Jeff and I met at Kenfig and walked out to Sker. A look along the bay at Kenfig Sands revealed about 5-6 birds that could have been divers, but much too distant to identify. We dcided to have a quick look at Sker Point and Pink Bay just in case some birds were nearer. A flock of Oystercatchers were busy, with a few Curlews and Turnstones. A Peregrine sat on the Ffynnon-wen Rocks. We soon picked out three Red-throated Divers not too far out. After a while at least three more divers flew up channel, but these were too distant to id. As we made our way back to Sker, a Shag appeared close-in and I picked out a Guillemot diving out a sea. Scanning the Kenfig Sands bay this time revealed that the potential divers had gone as the tide ebbed. A lone Great-crested Grebe was all that remained onthe water. We moved on to Porthcawl to find the Laughing Gull. I wanted some better views and maybe a photo or two. It was a UK tick for Jeff. We parked at the harbour, and scanned the flagpoles and beach. Sure enough, within a minute Jeff had picked out a dark blob on Sandy Bay which turned out to be 'our bird'. We got onto the beach and took a few photos before it flew back to the harbour, whereupon it returned to the beach as we arrived back at the harbour. Not too worry though, as we were able to watch it in flight and feeding on the beach for quite some time as the tide went out. A couple of Gwent birders were there too, and mentioned they'd seen upto twenty Red-throated Divers and sixty Golden Plovers at Rest Bay that morning.

No comments: