Sat 25th April 2015.
A trip to North Wales with Paul and Dave. Paul arrived at my place 02:50, yes that's right ten to three! We picked Dave up 10 minutes later and headed off to World's End, North Wales. The aim of our trip was to see Black Grouse lekking. An reasonable journey with little traffic but lots of cones and a couple of minor diversions. Our first stop was fairly close to World's End. A quick look at a small fast running stream Dipper and Grey Wagtail kicked off our days birding. Another stop about half a mile up the road and a pair of displaying Dipper were seen. We didn't hang around for too long as we were keen to see some Black Grouse. We stopped in the first layby but although we could hear Black Grouse none could be seen. At the second layby, again we could hear Black Grouse but this time we could see a few Black Grouse on the hillside. We stayed in the car and on scanning the hillside we counted 29 Black Grouse lekking. An impressive sight and sound. We spent a good while admiring the Black Grouse and then all of a sudden they all took flight which was an impressive sight in itself.. Further along the moor a male Whinchat was singing but we could only find a female and a Grasshopper Warbler reeled brifly. Then at the other end of the moor a Red Grouse provided some nice flight views. We were discussing where we might go to see Pied Flycatcher, Redstart etc when Dave's pager which was on silent! started making a strange bleeping. On investigation it was a "mega alert". A Hudsonian Godwit in Somerset! A quick team meeting and all agreed to leave Wales and head down to the Somerset Levels. Ham Wall car park in the sat-nav and off we rushed. About three and a half hours later we arrived at the new and lucky for us and hundreds of other birders rather large car park. Lots of smiling faces leaving were a good sign. We joined a long line of a couple of hundred birders and soon connected with the Hudsonian Godwit. To begin with the "Hudwit" was sleeping and only occasionally lifting it's head for a quick preen. Some of the Black-tailed Godwits the Hudsonian was associating with gave it an occasional prod which made it re-locate to another part of the flock. In so doing it gave some better views of underwing etc. Whilst admiring the "Hudwit" there were plenty of other birds to be seen including; Common Crane, Hobby, Swift, Great White Egret, Greenshank, Wood Sandpiper. Time to leave now but not before a nice Wood Warbler entertained us near the car park. Some pics below. You can click on the photo's for larger versions but I wouldn't recommend it!