Monday, 15 June 2015

The Big Twitch

It has been a pretty manic couple of days, following on from my last post. Yesterday morning, Steffan Walton stepped out of his humble abode near the Lighthouse at about 0600, only to find that the male Cretzschmar's Bunting had been feeding on his doorstep, and then flew up onto a nearby wall and burst into song...out went the news, and all the island's birders were there within half an hour. The bird remained around the Lighthouse compound, feeding on areas of open and rough ground, although disappearing into the long grass for long periods. Once we realised that the bird was actually going to be *relatively easy* to connect with, we put the news out and contacted the boatman to see what trips could be organised....

30 hours later, there have now been a total of 12 boat trips to the island, carrying over 100  birders to see this very special bunting. There were reportedly over 85 birders queuing up in Porth Meuddwy at the crack of dawn this morning, and unfortunately only 72 of these have been able to board the boat across due to limited space. All of the staff from Bardsey Bird Obs have been doing a fantastic job in coordinating the viewing and making sure everyone sees the bird, and although a very tiring task when done all day long, we are pleased to say that virtually every visiting birder thus far has seen the bird!

Fingers crossed that this beast from the east will be present for the early boat trips tomorrow...

CRETZSCHMAR'S BUNTING! Still can't believe that we have one feeding at the base of the lighthouse! What a bird

It really isn't too bad a view from the lighthouse- this is looking north-east to Bardsey Mountain, with a wall covered in thrift and bird's foot trefoil in the foreground

TWITCHERS!! A very rare species indeed on Bardsey. Well, satisfied twitchers are rare at any rate...

Some scenes from the bunting twitch at the lighthouse


  1. Hi Ben, as one of the very happy 72, many thanks again for all your hard work and hospitality in making for a truly memorable visit. Let's hope that Bardsey is graced with more megas to tempt us back in the future. Once again huge thanks to you all. Cheers, Steve.

  2. Hi Steve. Glad you enjoyed your time here and had a great visit. I guess it is hard not to with a bird like that! Indeed, it would be good to see you back at some point! Thanks for commenting, and best wishes. Ben