Thursley Common

Misty clear cold moring. Couple of Dartford Warblers + Hundred of Fieldfare over and stopping off – very definite vismig, wave after wave.

***GREAT GREY SHRIKE*** – getting mobbed by Redpoll

***WOODLARK*** – crest and eye stripe clearly visible + short tail

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France – Italy, 24th May to 2nd June

Fri 24th
Early start for flight to Marseille, pick up car and head to Cassis. Air bnb apartment overlooking town nice enough.

Sat 25th
Walk to Callanque en Veau. Meet P&K in harbour on way back. Later we all have dinner in two Michelin starred restaurant.

Sun 26th
Walk Les Cretes with P&K. Later take them to the airport

Mon 27th
Drive all along the coast to Italy. Nice weather early, becomes stormy after we arrive in Italy then traffic gets very bad. Arrive at airbnb in the hills in the dark. Nice dinner in a local restaurant.

Tues 28th
Early to Portofino, then on to the Cinque Terra for a walk. Arrive Vezzanello 5pm

Wed 29th
Vezzanello – walk in the mountains. Relaxing with Janice

Thurs 30th 
Train with Janice to Lucca. Dinner in Equi Terme.

Fri 31st
Nice lunch in the mountians

Sat 1st June
Drive to Sospel, just over the French border. Very nice town and hotel. Fantatsic walk up the mountain then pizza by the river in town.

Sun 2nd
Drive through Provence to Aix, for strolly afternoon before airport home in evening

 

Snowdonia

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4am start to meet Alan ‘Biggest Twitch’ Davies. Drive to Worlds End (between Llnangollen and Wrexham) for dawn lekking ***BLACK GROUSE***. Various leks, on very near road with 5 or 6 grouse. Amazing looking birds doing the full lekking behaviour. Later worked down valley for *Winchat, Cuckoo, redstart, M&F Pied Flycatcher, Willow Warbler, *Garden Warbler, *Siskin, *Grey Wagtail.

Then to Llangollen where ***DIPPER*** easily viewed from bridge. Adult feeding juvenile. Lots of dipping – ‘flys’ underwater in strong current. Also *Mandarin.

Breaskfast back along A5. Feeder at Cafe *Yellowhammer, *Lesser Redpoll, ‘Brown’ or leucistic Chaffinch.

Clacaenog forest area, didn’t find Goshawk, did find ***TREE PIPET*** – bigger, strong eyestripe & wing bar, call distinctive.

To Capel Curig, just south by river ***WOOD WARBLER*** Great clear views. Bigger, bright green, clean white, unmistakable, Beautiful bird. *Common Sandpiper, Pied Flycatcher.

Then to ‘Ogwen Cottage’ along old road in the rain, eventually for ***RINGED OUZEL*** Grass slopes among rocks, bigger than Blackbird otherwise looks and behaves v. similar. Good clear views ending in a flypast.

Long. very tired drive home to London.

Snowdonia

IMG_1342_1000Staying in converted church Capel Curig (airbnb) – OK, not amazing, bit weird as family home and they had photographer doing shoot of their daughter in the afternoon and freinds over for dinner party in evening. Location great – ideal for mountain walking some other time.

5am start, Weather v. windy + hard rain.

Caerhun Chruch yard:
**HAWFINCH**
Single, female, not seen well (straight-on, light behind, but beak unmistakable)

Great Orme lashing with rain, so on to Aber Falls:
*Redstart / *Wheatear / *Raven / *Mistlethrush / *Willow Warbler / *Cuckoo

Back to Great Orme:
*Jackdaw / *Peregrine / *Chough / *Guillemot / *Cormorant / *Shag / *Razorbill / *Coal Tit

Penychant Nature Reserve (Conwy Mountain):
**PIED FLYCATCHER** – F. seen well in the right kind of woodland / *Chiffchaff

Finished the day with a walk up mountain near Capel Curig