17 May 2014

European Bee-eaters at St Davids Head

A beautiful May day today, bright sunshine and very little wind - superb. But quiet birdwise until Kathy and I were up on the shoulder of Carn Llidi and I heard a single call; immediately recognisable as a Bee-eater. I know the call as well as any bird call since they are always around our cave house in Spain (named by us 'Cueva Abejaruco' - Bee-eater Cave). Then the panic set in - I know very well the call carries a long way, they can be further off than you imagine and difficult to pick out. Kathy to the rescue! She drew my attention to three birds about 300 metres away and not much above our elevated position. Two of them were indeed Bee-eaters and the third something smaller. I picked out the distinctive shape and the bronze and yellow upperparts along with strong, curved bill. There were a couple more calls and Kathy called out that one was above our heads, and indeed it was, a lot closer and showing the blue underparts and ultra distinctive shape; all angles and sharp edges. They were moving quickly through, heading towards the coast and were soon out of view. We had definitely had three birds but, truth to tell, we hadn't had time to scan properly and there could actually have been a couple more. We trotted back to the top of the ridge and scanned the coast at the low gap called The Gesail, which is a good place to see moving Hirundines and the fields at Trfelli to the north-west where Hirundines etc often gather but no luck. And that was it! No time for photos - a brief but very satisfying experience.

No comments:

Post a Comment