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.

Wednesday 30 April 2014

Purple Heron at Kenfig Saltmarsh

A record shot (of sorts) of the Purple Heron, found earlier by Neil Donaghy. Appears to be an adult to me. It seems to have a preference for feeding in the reedbed just upstream of the WCP footbridge, although the bird did drop into the main reedbed further upstream around 18:20. The bird was not subsequently seen to fly from this area before 19:00 and may have gone to roost there.

Good Day at Sker and Kenfig

Hooded Crow at Sker Farm

Record shot at 500m with Sker House behind - thanks Dean for this long overdue county bird.

Tuesday 29 April 2014

Hoopoe at Langland

© P. Thorpe
Photo sent in of a Hoopoe seen this morning around the houses east of Langland Bay, not far from the Wales Coast Path. No further details have been made available as to whether this bird was seen again later in the day. If going looking for this bird tomorrow please be mindful to respect the privacy of the local residents.

Woodchat Shrike : Gileston

Showed well after work this evening between 6.30-7.15pm.

Gileston Woodchat Shrike 29/04/2014

Monday 28 April 2014

Garganeys at Kenfig Saltmarsh/reedbed

Karl Luxford saw a pair there on Sunday and Darren Coombs had a drake there today. The red crested pochard was not present on Kenfig Pool when I looked briefly this morning and this afternoon.

Woodchat Shrike

A report of a Woodchat Shrike at Gileston seen on the wall that separates the rough grassy area from the farm fields at c16.10. No further details. 

Sunday 27 April 2014

Spoonbill at Penclawdd

Presumably this is the same bird that has been at Penclacwydd the last week or so? Watched feeding on the falling tide off Penclawdd from the south side of Loughor Bridge at 20:03hrs. Shortly afterwards I also saw the 2cy Franklin's Gull fly across the estuary from Penclawdd to Penclacwydd - perhaps a clue to where it may be when it's absent from WWT? The Black Swan has also returned, and was grazing on the marsh with the Mutes at Berthlwyd.

Important Request

Re: Bonaparte's Gull at the Ogmore 2013

The GRC [& BBRC] are particularly interested if anyone saw this bird between 14th to 17th March 2013. Also in April between 14th and 17th. Any info on these dates would be much appreciated. 
Please email me with your information. Thank You DRWG.

Friday 25 April 2014

Red-crested Pochard on Kenfig Pool

Picture of the duck this morning. The bird was found by Karl Luxford yesterday evening.


Thursday 24 April 2014

Osprey over Kenfig River

© D. Coombs
Darren has provided a very nice record shot of the Osprey that he saw over the Kenfig River, this afternoon. This bird having originally passed overhead, heading north from the Kenfig Saltmarsh, later returned to the river mouth area before being lost from view.


An Osprey flew north over Caerau, Maesteg [SS8594] @1715hrs.

Wednesday 23 April 2014

GRC News

Since the addition of the Twitter Feed, we have decided to clear up the sidebar of certain features. These will now appear in a new tab at the top called Description News & Status. This new feature will contain all the news of records in circulation concerning VC41 from BBRC, WRP & GRC. As a new tab, we will now be able to have a more detailed account of all records voted on or still in-circulation which wasn't available on the side-bar. The GRC apologises for any inconvenience.
The side-bar news now will only contain Links, Twitter Feed & History of Posts.

Tuesday 22 April 2014

Not bird news so apologies.

I thought Mark's idea of a Twitter feed was a very good one so I have taken the liberty, as a Twitter user and follower of @welshbirders, to create a similar widget which I have installed in the sidebar of the Glamorgan Birds sightings blog on Wordpress, basically to feed the news to those people who perhaps don't follow the GRC one, and thus create more coverage. Hope that's OK, o/w I can easily remove it again.

Monday 21 April 2014

White Stork - Lisvane Res and Cyncoed, Cardiff

Seen in flight low over my flat at 13.10, drifted into view from north-west over Lisvane Res, harassed by a Lesser Black-backed Gull, briefly circled with a Common Buzzard over my flat then continued off in a south-easterly direction and lost to sight. In view (with bins), for over 5 mins.

Photos of Glaucous Gull at Broughton (19/4/14)

© E. Cram

© E. Cram
Mike Cram kindly sent these record shots of a 2cy Glaucous Gull that was at Broughton Bay on Easter Saturday. Possibly the long staying bird for which these will be the first record shots I've seen. It would be most useful if anyone having seen a Glaucous Gull at this location earlier in the year might share whether this bird looks like the bird reported from here previously. Many Thanks.

Late news - Iceland Gull at Rhossili (15/4/14)

I have received news from visiting birder regulars Paul & Anthea Larkin, that a 2cy Iceland Gull was showing along the cliff top east of the lookout station at Rhossili on 15/4/14

Friday 18 April 2014

Franklin's Gull at Crofty

At 7:30 this evening a 2cy Franklin’s Gull flew across from Penclacwydd and landed in the middle of the estuary on the incoming tide. I then met up with Rob Taylor at Dalton’s Point where we quickly relocated the bird, but it took off almost immediately and went round the corner towards Wernffrwd. From the church Rob eventually relocated the bird on the edge of the marsh and Neil Edwards, Mark Hipkin & Rob Jones managed to see the bird in before the light faded. It was last seen flying back up the estuary with a small group of Black-heads around 8:30 – bit of mad hour - well done Mark and Rob for getting there so quickly!

Assuming it’s there tomorrow it’s likely to be with the Black-heads, so could be anywhere in the upper section of the estuary between Loughor Bridge and Wernffrwd, or at WWT where most of the Black-heads commute to and from. The light will be excellent for the first few hours, but the haze will make things very difficult from about 10 onwards. I have the usual rubbish record shots which I’ll post later, assuming I don’t fall asleep in the bath with my bottle of wine…fingers crossed for tomorrow.

I make no excuses for the photos (video grabs) - the bird was 1.1km away and the sun had set - sometimes that's just the way it is!

Iceland Gull

juv Iceland in Broughton Bay y'day.


2nd W Glaucous gull still present at Mynydd baeden this afternoon.

Pied Fly's back

A pair of Pied Flycatcher were back in a Llynfi valley wood today - hope more arrive later.

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Garganey flock at Ogmore Estuary

Somewhat gobsmacked to find seven Garganey at Portobello, Ogmore Estuary, this morning.

Tuesday 15 April 2014

Friday 11 April 2014

Cardiff Cranes

Photo of the flock of 5 Cranes over Sophia Gardens today, for the records. Presumably from the GCP, had completely forgotten about the project.


Cranes seen over east Glamorgan.
Six (6) were seen yesterday [11th] over St. Athan @ 13.10, and then over Llancadle / Thaw Valley. They circled on thermals & flew away to the east [Rob Francis]. Today five (5) were seen over central Cardiff (Sophia Gardens) @ 14.45. [P. Howlett]. This party must have roosted somewhere in the Vale/Cardiff area!

Hoopoe at Landimore

Yesterday, a Hoopoe was seen ~200m along the track west from the car park at Landimore at SS461936. The observer was Robin Probert who said he'd let me know if he sees it again as he walks this stretch most days.


Drake Ring-necked Duck at Cosmeston 2004
If anyone saw this bird in 2004 and has any dates for FEBRUARY (it was found on 9th Jan.), could they leave them in the comments (or email me) please. The WRP & EGBR reports only states 'February' with no final date attached. Even if you visited this site in Feb. 2004 and didn't see it, I'll take those dates too.
Many thanks. DRWG

[It seems that this bird was only seen up till 25th Jan. I have only received negative news for any dates in February]

Wednesday 9 April 2014

13 wheatear at Trefil 12.30 today

Pink-footed Goose

This Pink-footed Goose was on its lonesome at the Watermill flood this morning. We often see the odd Greylag at this time of year there, but I can't recall a spring Pinkfoot before.

Tuesday 8 April 2014

Monday 7 April 2014

To be or not to be a GLAUCOUS GULL

                                                                     6th Apr 2014
                                                                  21st Feb 2014

Initially Identified as Iceland Gull, then Leucistic Herring Gull and finally Glaucous Gull in February, There were still some doubts over the bill pattern [or lack of it], this was all down to mud covering the "dipped in ink" pattern. I have no doubt this is the same bird as in February which has been seen sporadically since in the area associating with small groups of Herring Gull. The now uncovered bill is classic for Glaucous Gull. Hats off to all those who correctly identified it without relying on this feature. 

Mynydd ty talwyn, Llangynwyd.

                               Glaucous gull from yesterday, photo by Paul Tabor.

Saturday 5 April 2014

Kenfig saltmarsh.

Green winged teal and Garganey still present yesterday afternoon (per Colin Gittins)

Wednesday 2 April 2014

Garganey at Kenfig Saltmarsh

The Drake Garganey, found this afternoon by Dave Carrington, was showing fairly well early evening. It was showing mainly around the flooded saltmarsh area, but did on one occasion do a loop of the area, which took it into NPT airspace! A few Eurasian Teal were knocking about and were generally quite mobile around the saltmarsh in the couple of hours that we were there till 19:00, but no sign of the Green-winged Teal during this period (MHi, DCo, RJ). Also prior to our arrival Neil Donaghy had seen the Garganey and flushed a single Jack Snipe near the footbridge.

Turtle Dove in Bridgend

One photographed in a private garden. this morning. (AM). Looks like a ring on the R leg, although it doesn't look like a BTO type ring, more a plastic closed ring type. Possibly escape? Still nice garden record nonetheless. GRC. [Still present today 3rd]
© A. Murch

Mynydd ty talwyn, Llangynwyd.

Glaucous gull flew east over the road with around 20 Herring gulls at 10:30 AM today. It looked like the same individual found nearby by Darren Coombs in Feb.

Tuesday 1 April 2014

Cardiff Bay

Bonaparte's gull showing well this afternoon (just the one). Also 2CY little gull and 4 (2CY) med gulls.

Avocet on the Ogmore

This Avocet was seemingly grounded by fog at Ogmore Estuary this morning. In fact, the two previous occurrences of this species at the site that I am aware of were also in foggy conditions. The bird was rather flighty and I don't expect it will hang around for long, given the amount of disturbance down there.

Avocet at Ogmore Estuary

Paul Roberts found a very nice Avocet at Ogmore this morning. It showed well both sides of the river, downstream from Portobello House. Wild horse riders were instrumental in moving it about, which fortuitously encouraged the bird to settle on the Vale side of the river. From here it showed very nicely indeed and earlier worries about the news being an April Fool gag, were quickly forgotten. Not sure about that Wryneck reported opposite the Fountain Inn at Tondu though!