It was a wild and windy but not wet day last week when I ventured for the first time to the incredible Gower peninsula, on a birding trip with my Glamorgan Bird Club friends.
We parked near Mewslade Beach, then walked a circuit from there along the cliff-top coastal path, across the medieval field system of The Vile, through the little village of Rhossili and then back to the car park. Most of the birds were best viewed through binoculars or ’scopes so I don’t have many images of them to share but the scenery was just stunning! High stone cliffs honed in places to a razor edge by millennia of wind and rain, secret little coves nestled between tall protective hills, the long stretch of golden-sand beach at Rhossili that was recently named the best beach in Britain and one of the world’s top ten – Gower really does deserve the adjective ‘awesome’!
Oh, and getting back to the birds – I saw a total of 34 species: Cormorant, Sparrowhawk, Common Buzzard, Kestrel, Peregrine, Oystercatcher, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull, Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, Pheasant, Magpie, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Raven, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Coal Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Chiffchaff, Goldcrest, Wren, Blackbird, Robin, Stonechat, Dunnock, House Sparrow, Pied Wagtail, Meadow Pipit, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Linnet, and the two highlights for me, Common Scoter (a group of perhaps 20 floating together on the sea – seen through a ’scope) and several Gannets, flying low to the waves not far offshore, plus a bonus sighting of at least one Grey seal lolling about in the waves in one of the bays.
The group total was 46 species as I was too busy admiring the scenery to notice these: Shag, Kittiwake, Guillemot, Razorbill, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Chough, Rook, Bullfinch, Song Thrush, Common Gull, and Great Black-backed Gull. Thanks to John and Glamorgan Bird Club members for yet another fantastic day out!