Tuesday, January 19, 2010

More Kite News

It was about time I headed north for a visit to Rhayader. The now well-discussed and photographed Black Kite has been on show for a few weeks, and presents a good opportunity to see the species at close quarters alongside Red Kite, regardless of its credentials.

A stop-off at Llwyn-onn Reservoir did not produce its annual Water Pipit tick, though a Woodcock flushed at the north of the Reservoir, a small party of Goosander on Cantref Reservoir, and a Goshawk over Erwood produced year ticks for our group.

At Gigrin, we were on the Black Kite within a few minutes, being perched in a nearby tree. Good views through the binoculars and telescopes were enjoyed, and our team photographer snapped away. It drifted off, so we made our way to the feeding area, and took up position outside the hides. There was plenty of activity, with Red Kites, Buzzards, Crows, Ravens and the odd Grey Heron waiting for their grub. A mixed group of Siskins and Lesser Redpolls fed on the Alders behind us.

At 2:00pm prompt, the tractor arrived with its load. Sprinkling this over the ground in front of the hides soon saw the sky full of birds. Buzzards and corvids seem to feed on the ground, whereas the kites prefer to stay aloft, picking up scraps and feeding on the wing.

Black Kite: courtesy of Handy Grouse Imaging

The feeding frenzy lasted around 30 minutes, after which we departed south for Ponsticill Reservoir where an Iceland Gull has been reported coming in to roost in the later afternoon. We arrived at 3:50pm, with large numbers of gulls, already roosting in two large group on the water. We spent some time working through the roost, but it consisted of Herring Gulls and Black-headed Gulls for the most part. We left with new birds still arriving at the roost as darkness fell.


Jeff said...

Fantastic photo,sorry I mean image !!
Surely you mean Andy Rouse !

Wayne said...


Jeff said...

Wayne - I'm glad we share the same sense of humour.