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.

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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.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Garganeys and Scaup at Kenfig and a partial eclipse

Following on from the premature partial eclipse at Taff's Well, yesterday, the partial eclipse today was far more predicable. Lots of notable duck sightings from the region and unsurprisingly the comments querying eclipse plumage came thick and fast. In truth the comments were more entertaining than the astronomical event and will certainly help me remember the day better.
On arrival to the Kenfig saltmarsh around 09:00 it wasn't long before a single drake Garganey was in flight over the reeds that landed in the open water within the reedbed, but out of sight. It wasn't for another 15mins that it reappeared, but this time alongside a second drake Garganey. Since the date when a single drake was seen on the 12/3/15 this is only the second time that 2 drakes have been seen together, the first time was 13/4/15. Presumably the birds today involve the same 2 from a week ago, though it's impossible to know for certain. In addition to the Garganeys there was a good selection of duck gathered on the pools inside the reedbed including a pair of Shoveler, 4 Gadwalls, 20+ Teal and Mallards.
It seems remarkable to me that I only saw my first Garganey in Glamorgan last year! However, it's perhaps not surprising that I finally managed to catch up with the species in the county recently, when considering how frequently it's been recorded over the last few years. Scaup on the other hand seem to be getting more difficult to catch up with. So with news of a female Scaup found by Neil Donaghy at Kenfig Pool this morning, I was tempted to make the effort to see it. The appearance of a dullish eye-colour make me think this is a 2nd cal year female and the first Scaup I've seen since 2012!
This how the partial eclipse looked projected onto an iPad by using a telescope. On reflection a fairly eventful day.

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