A tale of nature, wildlife and birding from Cheshire, North Wales and across the globe....

A tale of nature, wildlife and birding from Cheshire, North Wales and across the globe....

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Snow Buntings in Wales

With the decline of the previously reliable Kimnel Bay wintering Snow Buntings and the return of the lone male at Llandudno West Shore for his second year, I decided to go and take a look at this stunning bird on my day off. Having failed to find him earlier on in the year, this time I was confident where to look, and sure enough I soon spotted him sitting on one of the boulders near the breakwater on the beach. Having moved down to escape the cold, it was great to watch this showy individual at close range, admiring the white flashes on the wings as he flitted from perch to perch.

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting

It’s unclear as to exactly why the Kimnel Bay Snow Buntings failed to return last year – until then it was probably the best site for a reliable Snow Bunting sighting in North Wales with up to 14 birds present. Theories range from it being a warm winter last year and the birds staying on higher ground to the newly created cycle path and the increase in dog walkers and disturbance this has resulted in along the shore, so only time will tell if they decide to make an appearance this year. In the meantime, let’s hope this lone male is joined by some friends soon….
Snow Bunting
Snow Bunting from Kimnel Bay in 2011

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