Monday, 20 June 2016


Saturday started early, with my "late" season BBS before heading of to Brecon to coach/officiate. The walk up to my staring point was accompanied by a calling Cuckoo - and my thoughts were it would shut up as soon as I started my transect. Come 05:30, and the start, the Cuckoo was still calling, and duly recorded for the survey. Numbers (individuals and species) were better than the early season visit, but still down on previous years.
After the count I had a short gap before I needed to head up to Brecon so I had a little potter around and surprised myself with 2 Dark Green Frit's.

On arriving at Brecon, and awaiting my athletes I had a quick check on Birdguides - Almost the first bird up was a Broad-billed Sandpiper at Goldcliffe - Arhhhhh!. I'd dipped the previous two there - the last in April this year. Would it stick around? I knew I would not be able to get away until after 1, at the earliest.

I managed to get away about half past one, drove home, picked up my scope and arrive at Goldcliffe at 3pm, only to find out it had flown off about 14:30... High tide was not long after 18:00, so a long wait was in prospect. A Wood Sandpiper provided immediate compensation. Eventually a turnstone appeared, followed by a second... and then suddenly there was a single Dunlin. If was fast approaching 6 pm, and no sign.

Fortunately, or unfortunately, there was a couple who had walked over to the sea wall hide but rather than go into the hide they decided to climb over the raised bank, flushing most of the Lapwing and wildfowl. Although distant, and with onlt small patches of the back pool visable from the main hides I noticed an avocet acting quite aggitated, I presumed as it has young. I then noticed something small moving in the background. Scope onto it and it was two, three, four, then five Dunlin and a Ringed Plover. Phil Bristow, had now focused on the waders and quickly picked up the BBS. Result - though distant and totally unsatisfactory views. A quick yomp round to the sea wall hide, passing the couple who had decided to climb the bank, and there we enjoyed scope filling views of the sandpiper in great light. I even managed to grab a couple of piss poor record shots

it is in all three photo's, honest!

So 50 weeks after my last British tick, a new addition to my British list.

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