Sunday, 8 November 2015

an owl or two

With the Pallid Swift not re-appearing after the rain eventually stopped yesterday, I decided to head to Llanrhidian Marsh after coaching, to catch up with the owl and harrier fest that has been reported there recently.

I arrived about 10 past 3 and was informed by the only birder there that a couple of ring-tail's and Shorties were already on show. Quickly setting up the scope, the first bird I locked on to was a Short-eared Owl, quickly followed by one of the ring-tail Hen Harriers.

In total we had 3 Hen Harriers - all ring-tails, 7 Shorties (there may have been more, but 7 was the largest single sweep count, but birds were dropping and rising all the time), 4 Kestrel, 1 Merlin, 1 Red Kite, 1 Buzzard, 3 Great White Egrets (I only managed 2) and a single Green Sandpiper. We also had several waves of Starling heading over towards Swansea to roost, One wave must of contained close to 200,000 birds and must have been over a mile in length. In all I recon somewhere between 1/4 and 1/2 a million Starlings must of passed over!

Post Script: On entering my sightings into Birdtrack, I was somewhat surprised to discover that the 4 Kestrel, nor the 3 Hen Harriers, or even the 7 Shorties constitute a "unusually high count", particularly strange when 2 Dipper pass that threshold!


  1. That sounds a very good evening's birding.

  2. It was, unfortunately I had to leave before it got dark enough for the Barn Owl to appear. but if it's dry next Sat, i'll give it another go.