Birds of Pensarn

Mochras Lagoon is situated at Latitude 52.50N Longitude 04.06W and is in a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) called Pen Llyn a’r Sarnau. Basking sharks have been seen off the coast, as well as a large number of dolphins around Sarn Badrig. A Leather Backed Turtle was seen by several members just off Llandanwg beach in July 2008. As well as the birds listed below, a pair of Ospreys have nested successfully for several years, and raised 2 or 3 young each year, only 10 miles away at Llanfrothan.

A blustery bright day on Llandanwg beach mid Sept 2011, immediately following Hurricane Katya – which diverted at us when it should have hit New York. A smart looking gull was seen a bit like a kittiwake. A small gull, very fine looking, quite a flyer, with sharp long wings. Pronounced white patch on its upper wings, and the tail had a black lined triangle cut out at the stern. Blacker than a kittiwake, which I’ve only seen off-shore.
It was identified from on-line reference material as a Sabines gull, a graceful small bird which can sometimes be seen here in the autumn. This was a juvenile which had probably been caught up in the hurricane and got a swift lift across the Atlantic on its way from North America, where it breeds, via Europe to its wintering grounds in Southern Africa.
It flew around apparently a little bewildered, but hopefully fed in the lagoon before starting off again down south.
I’ve noted quite a range of birds over the past three years.
Many are striking, but notably the Peregrine falcon, the fastest bird on earth, which dives on its prey at 110 mph. All I experienced was a sudden sound as of a
small jet engine, or of fine cloth being violently ripped. A quick shadow, and
the predator was gone. Its prey, a swift, happily got away.