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THE new year is a [...]; BIRD NOTES.

Byline: With Julian Hughes

THE new year is a clean slate for birdwatchers, many of whom will keep a list for the calendar year.

Some will set a target to see within a geographic area, be that Britain, Wales, their county or a single site.

The Welsh Ornithological Society published the new Welsh Bird List on New Year's Day, which now stands at 448 species.

In my case, 2017 ended with 125 species at RSPB Conwy, somewhat lower than my best ever year of 136 species in 2016.

Lots of birders were out on New Year's Day, when I saw 56 species at the nature reserve, of which 47 were during a two-hour guided walk in atrocious weather.

Firecrest, Chiffchaff, Scaup, Water Pipit, Bartailed Godwit and Cetti's Warbler were among the highlights here.

Eight Hawfinches were upriver at Caerhun church and another four were at Llanelltyd, near Dolgellau.

| Elsewhere, the first day of January saw a Glaucous Gull remaining at Llanddulas beach (a second had been present over the weekend) while at least two Surf Scoters were offshore from Old Colwyn's Rainbow Bridge.

Four Purple Sandpipers were enjoyed by many people walking the promenade at Rhos Point, and a Hooded Crow was at Aber foreshore.

On the Dyfi estuary, the long-staying female King Eider crossed the county boundary to spend the day off Aberdyfi jetty, and Firecrests stayed over from 2017 at Penrhyndeudraeth and Benllech.

On Anglesey, four Cattle Egrets were again at Pont Marquis, near the Cefni estuary and eight Barnacle Geese are feeding near Llyn Trafwll, perhaps part of the Dyfi estuary flock that are starting to make their way back to their Cumbrian breeding lakes.

The weekend saw a Slavonian Grebe and a couple of Pale-bellied Brent Geese off Llanfairfechan, and two Little Gulls off Criccieth.

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Publication:Daily Post (Conwy, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jan 4, 2018
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