COACH TRIP TO NORTH WALES - 8 NOVEMBER 2009

Blessed with remarkable weather for November, an almost full coach set off from the Guild at 8am. First stop was RSPB Conwy, a new reserve for some members, where we spent the morning. A water rail from the first hide (which used to be the old visitor centre, but is now a lovely café) was seen by most people - some as they sipped their coffee and ate fresh bacon butties.

The usual ducks were seen on the walk round including two goldeneye and other birds of note were a red-breasted merganser and quite a few snipe. A walk to the stream at the far end produced a fly-by kingfisher. Viewing the estuary, where the tide was out we saw goosanders, cormorants, wigeon, and a variety of waders and gulls, along with two little egrets. Whooper swan was seen by someone, but only mute swans were seen by most.

We had lunch on the coach as we travelled to our second destination, which was the Spinnies Reserve. A flock of tits going through contained goldcrest and nuthatch, whilst on the estuary, a red-throated diver was the only bird of note. A kingfisher showed for those who managed to get into the hide. A visit to the second hide was a nice surprise as eight greenshank were obligingly roosting in good view.

Driving on towards Llanfairfechan, we alighted the coach above the Morfa Madryn reserve and walked to Llanfairfechan. An amazing sight was many ringed plovers, some almost invisible on the rocky shore as they sat amongst the stones. There were oystercatchers in their hundreds and linnets on the salt marsh as we walked along the coast. As we approached Llanfairfechan, a dipper was on the stream which flows out to the sea and gave people wonderful views of it feeding in the water and as it flew up stream it was joined by a second one.

Looking out from Llanfairfechan promenade, the sea was very quiet apart from one common scoter and a couple of red-breasted mergansers, but as we walked back up the road to the coach, several pied wagtails were coming into the trees to their roost site for the night. Another enjoyable day, with a tally of 75 species.
TRISH

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