Thursday, October 07, 2010

"An Eggy Nun Weekend"

With Dan entertaining guests,Wayne away watching his beloved Spurs and Kevin still D.I.Y ing I had to go it alone this weekend for a change.
With a poor weather forecast myself and Teresa decided to stay at home instead of going up to the caravan and so on Saturday morning (2.Oct) I decided to pay a visit to Eglwys Nunydd Reservoir (Glamorgan's rarity mecca in recent weeks !) in the hope of finding something out of the usual.
I decided to give the legs a stretch and do a full circuit on what was a gloriously sunny morning,plenty of Cetti's Warblers were singing and with only the usual gulls and waterfowl showing I was three-quarters of the way around before a tern caught my attention at the West end.
Using my superbly honed tern ID skills I quickly identified it as an Arctic Tern (or rather I checked the GBC sightings page on my iPhone and it had already been posted as an Arctic !!)
Anyway, it hung about at the West end of the rez enabling me to get a few reasonable record shots of the bird in flight.

Judging by the upperwing patterns it looked like a juvenile bird.

I had my fill of the lone tern and headed back to the car passing one of many Great Crested Grebes that call Eglwys home which came in really close to the bank and offered a good photographic opportunity.

Sunday(3.Oct) dawned wet and miserable so a lay-in was in order,I was sorely tempted to watch some of the much interupted Ryder Cup golf in the afternoon but the temptation to go was to great and I headed down to Port Talbot to have a look around the docks area for perhaps a rare gull or tern.

Plenty of the former about but only a single adult Med Gull of note at the sand wharf and too far away to photograph so I thought I'd call in again at Eglwys on my way home.

Upon arrival there were already two birders there with 'scopes up at the West end one of which was Martyn Hnatiuk and the other I think was Graham Roblyn but I couldn't be sure.

Martyn informed me that the Arctic Tern was still there in company with a Black Tern and as we watched them a couple of Little Gulls dropped in out of nowhere and offered the chance of a few record shots.

One was a full adult bird with it's distinctive dark underwing and the other a 1st winter bird with it's equally distinctive bold W pattern on it's upperwing.

The other birder left and Martyn and I chatted for a while mostly about his quest to set a new Glamorgan Year List record before he to decided to call it a day.

Both terns were favouring the West end of the rez and so I moved around to the west side to get the setting sun behind me and managed a few more shots of both birds before the light faded.

I'd gone out with an open mind and after a disappointing hour or two down around the docks Eglwys had yet again delivered and I headed for home more than happy with the "snaps" of the terns with the Little Gulls a really unexpected bonus.