Thursday, 13 June 2013



The date: Saturday 1st June 2013.

The time: 0430 hours.

The reason: your scribe had to get out of bed to go to the loo.

The problem: now he had to make a decision, whether to go back to bed or stay up?

The decision: to stay up.

So started my day for the Bath Nats Birdsong SIG trip to Wentwood.
After loading the car with what I needed for the day I made my way to Frankcom House. It was a sunny day with a slight chill wind as Di Nelson and I were chauffeured, by Phillip Delve, to South Wales.

On arrival at the Cadira Beeches car park we found three other Birdsong SIGers waiting for us. Whilst having a cup of coffee, a Tree Creeper was spotted on a tree adjacent to the car park. The bird songs we hoped to hear were those of the Wood Warbler, Tree Pipit, Redstart and Garden Warbler.

We started our search for Wood Warblers, which we heard but did not see. At another location we heard and saw Wood Warbler. On to our next bird, the Tree Pipit. On our way to find Tree Pipit a Firecrest was seen and heard by Lucy Delve, but then made itself scarce. Further on we heard and saw Tree Pipit, which led us merry dance by not staying in one place more than 30 seconds. An unusual find was some flying insects which Phillip Delve believed were Micro Moths. Consulting the literature they were identified as Adela reaumurella, One of the features of this moth is its antenna are 2 to 3 times the length of its body.

We failed to see or hear the two other birds on our list, namely Redstart and Garden Warbler, and as it was now midday we decided to move to the Newport Wetlands for lunch. While consuming our food, the feeders provided a views of the usual suspects, plus Great Spotted Woodpecker. On the walk round the reserve we came across a nest of caterpillars of the Lackey moth (picture attached).
Among the birds seen were Shelduck, Curlew, Whitethroat, Oystercatcher, Little Owl and a Cuckoo was heard. A goodly number of Southern Marsh Orchids were found (picture attached).

Moving to Gold Cliff, were we had to go down a track more suited to 4 wheel drive vehicles to get to the car park. We saw a variety of water birds, including Avocets and a solitary Dunlin. The Avocets seemed very agitated and would take to the air frequently. The source of this behaviour became apparent when a Buzzard was spotted with something in its talons.

All in all a very good day of nature watching and listening.

A big thank you to Dave Edwards

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