GRC Blog

Welcome to the GRC Recorders pages. This blog provides details on all the relevant news of Glamorgan’s scarcer birds, plus all BBRC & WRP decisions that affect us locally. It will also be used to document the status and occurrence of these scarcer species and we welcome contributions from anyone with photographs, artwork or documentation of rarities past, present and future. The GRC also welcomes all seawatching news from around Glamorgan and news of passage migrants in spring & autumn, uncommon birds in our area and unusual behaviour.

All visitors are welcome. You must first register by sending an email to before you can contribute. An invite will be sent to your email address. Blog content will be strictly moderated. Access to pages and downloads are available to everyone. All photographs on this blog remain the property of the originator.
If you would like to use photos, please arrange permission beforehand.

The Glamorgan Rarities Committee, in conjunction with the Glamorgan Bird Club & Gower Wildlife , have agreed to co-operate with the Welsh Ornithological Society in the sharing of bird records & photographs in the interest of keeping accurate records and to promote birdwatching in North, Mid & South Wales.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Derek Moore's Funeral

Derek Moore's funeral will take place at Narberth Crematorium on Friday 7th of November at 1.00pm. Refreshments afterwards at Plas Hyfryd Country House Hotel nearby.

Further details can be found on the Carmarthenshire Bird Club website HERE or via the link in the sidebar

Friday, 24 October 2014

Derek Moore

It is with great sadness that we receive news that Derek Moore passed away yesterday. Derek's name is synonymous with conservation and celebrating the joys of birdwatching. Sadly I never got to know Derek well having only met him once at a WOS Conference a couple of years ago. I listened to him address the conference that day and his passion for the Society and the bigger picture regarding conservation had the conference completely captivated. With his passing we lose a much admired figurehead and special person. Our thoughts and condolences go out to his wife Beryl and his family.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Yellow-browed Warbler at Pant Norton

A Yellow-browed Warbler was at Pant Norton, this afternoon. Calling and showing well off and on. (DCB)

Kentish Plover Crymlyn Burrows 18-20/10/14

It would appear the Kentish Plover has moved on from Crymlyn Burrows, having not been seen at high tide on either 21st or 22nd. It was a showstopper for me, particularly since on the three days I saw it I didn't count the other waders present. So normal services resumed yesterday with a couple of counts revealing 51 Dunlins (down from c80) and 183 Ringed Plovers (down from c220). The Sanderling seemed fewer but were not counted. Prior to the Kentish Plover's arrival the small wader numbers had been keeping fairly constant and so it seems likely that a small movement of waders away from the area has occurred in recent days, perhaps due to the stormy weather.

It was particularly rewarding to watch the Kentish Plover amongst the regular mix of waders and pleasing also that so many other birders managed to visit to see it.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Kentish Plover still at Crymlyn Burrows (20/10/14)

The Kentish Plover showed well with the wader roost yesterday evening over high tide. Present for it's third day.

Monday, 20 October 2014

Cwmdu, Maesteg.

                                One of three Ring ouzels there today.

Black-throated Diver in Swansea Bay (19/10/14)

Owain Gabb had a Black-throated Diver in Swansea Bay, yesterday morning. It was showing offshore from Knab Rock, Mumbles.

Other interest yesterday included :-
Great Skua down channel past Porthcawl (GP)
Curlew Sandpiper, 32+ Sandwich Terns & a few Commic Terns from Dalton's Point (BS)

Pomarine Skua at Port Eynon (18/10/14)

Martin Bell had a session at Port Eynon on Saturday morning. 1 Pomarine Skua was the highlight. Also 2 Arctic Skuas and 3 Sandwich Tern

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Kentish Plover at Crymlyn Burrows

Following a number of years dreaming of seeing a Kentish Plover at Crymlyn Burrows, today I finally got to see one for real. Clearly a late individual and some murmuring have entertained the idea of Snowy Plover! To be honest the reference material I have leaves me thinking this is a Kentish Plover, but I doubt that I could make a wholly convincing case to completely rule Snowy Plover out. Can it be done? The plumage seemed good for juvenile, not showing much dark in the broken collar. On some occasions, particularly at closer range, the bird didn't look very long-legged, however as the below photo shows it would often look very long-legged, which seems better feature for Kentish. Otherwise, my trusted Shorebirds suggests that Snowy Plover can often have pale legs, but this bird showed the dark legs that I was expecting to see.
It's not the first time a Kentish Plover has been seen at Crymlyn Burrows. Dr Bryn Richards' Bird Life of Neath and District from 1952 to 1972 has a systematic list that shows ' Rare; one record only, Jersey Marine, October 1970.' This record has no observer details.
A search of the database records shows more details relating to the 1970 record -
1 - 4th October 1970 - D.M. Hanford
Two other records that year both coming from Blackpill
3 - 17th May 1970 - P.G. Lansdown et al 
1 - 8th June 1970 - R.A. Hume  

Friday, 17 October 2014

Yellow-browed Warbler at Kenfig River

© D. Coombs
Darren has kindly provided a record shot of the Yellow-browed Warbler he found alongside the Kenfig River, this morning. It was seen along the Tarmac Road leading to Kenfig Saltmarsh from the Kenfig Ind. Est. (SS793831)

Wednesday, 15 October 2014


2 Wood Larks over the Point at 08.50 (PB, MM) seen to drop into fields behind holiday camp. Also lots of vis mig, mainly Redwings, Meadow Pipits, Skylarks and Swallows.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014


A Great White Egret was seen on Talygarn Lake flew off towards Hensol Lakes at midday [Mark Hebden], possibly the Lavernock bird? Also a Ring Ouzel at Cwm Nash [NPR].

Of interest - OOC: 300 Ring Ouzels at Dungeness today! Hundreds of skuas in the North Sea + 6 bonxies off Somerset coast & loads of YBWs on the east coast - all heading our way?

Monday, 13 October 2014


Lavernock Point: A Great White Egret f/o mid morning. Good migration still, with movements of hirundines, mainly swallows with a few house martins, meadow pipits and finches. At least 2 Merlins were present there this am, a male and fem/imm type. [PB & LM]

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Wood Lark at Lavernock & Whooper Swans at KNNR

A Wood Lark was found at Lavernock this am and was still present early afternoon - two photos supplied by GNS 13/10/14 [GNS & PB].

Two Whooper Swans were on Kenfig Pool briefly until being chased off by resident Mute Swans. [multi obs]. Photo from JDW.

A Ring Ouzel was seen at Caerlan Farm [PM & AMe].

Saturday, 11 October 2014

The very confiding Grey Phal refound on the RGW .

Pomarine Skua over Bracelet Bay

A couple of record shots of the pale morph adult Pomarine Skua that was found by Darren Coombs on the GOS Vis-Mig field trip to Mumbles. Seen from Mumbles Hill this bird might easily been missed by a sea watcher positioned on Tutt Head due to it flying too close! Luckily for us it made one of 50 species seen today, which also included Dartford Warbler and Great Northern Diver. A decent hirundine movement occurred with c650 Swallows noted plus 34 House Martins including a party of at least 25 birds that lingered around Mumbles Hill till midday.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Seawatching Porthcawl

07:00 to 12:30 (MHi, DCo, PP, MHn, CG, NPR, PB)
Not quite as productive as hoped, but signs that small numbers of birds that had been blown up channel were filtering past regularly enough to maintain interest. Also, occasional heavy and squally showers seemed capable of delivering some sort of reward.
2 Arctic Skuas together, including a juvenile, down channel probably the highlight, and later a distant Skua sp. up channel. Otherwise everything down channel - Common Scoter (3), Manx Shearwater (1), Dunlin (2), Sandwich Tern (1), Common Tern (2 juvs), Arctic Tern (3 juvs) and Commic Tern (1). Also, Kittiwakes (20+) and Gannets (10+), both were completely absent to begin with, but became more frequent after the wind died down.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

GWE at Llwyn-On Res

A Great White Egret found by ranger Tim Griffiths this am at Llwyn-On Res. Photo by Mike Hogan.
Seems this species is increasing its range and will probably become a local rarity before too long.
New for RCT & Merthyr UA

Monday, 6 October 2014


The GRC have received reports of a 1st Winter Ring-billed Gull at Blackpill 4th Oct and an Ortolan Bunting at Newton Dunes, Porthcawl also 4th Oct. Both these species are Welsh rarities. Could the observers please notify the GRC/WRP with any information they have concerning these sightings. All info/notes/photos would be gratefully received. Thank you. 

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Black-necked Grebes at Lisvane Res.

There are two Black-necked Grebes at Lisvane Res. this afternoon [per PB]. Both seen together at southern end of reservoir. The likelihood that these are new birds moving through on passage. This has been a quite remarkable year for this species in Glamorgan.

Negative News: No sign of them today at the reservoirs [6th] (MC & DRWG)

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Ruff at R G W. today!


A Turtle Dove at Cosmeston, on the wildlife area which has restricted access. Best viewed from the viewing area before the bridge. [CJ]
At RGW a Ruff and a Greenshank this pm. [RM]
The drake Lesser Scaup again at CBWR, at the St. David's Hotel end. [JDW]

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Great White Egret in the Burry

Philip Croft photographed the first GWE of the autumn to return to estuary yesterday morning at Penclacwydd and by the evening it was seen at Llanrhidian by Emma Piercey.

I saw the green wing-tagged Marsh Harrier (from Norfolk) yesterday lunchtime, which was hunting the marsh between Penclawdd and Gowerton.