Lake Vyrnwy in Oswestry, Shropshire was visited enroute to Wales. A very picturesque area. A good RSPB Visitor Centre is based there with plenty of information on local walks etc and the usual goodies on sale. The weather soon closed in as the last photo shows, fortunately the gloom and drizzle soon passed over and the sunshine returned. Just a short visit here and strangely only a Cormorant on the edge of the water was seen.
The Dunes and Estuary at Ynyslas and Cors Fochno (Borth Bog) are part of the Dyfi National Nature Reserve. On two short visits to Ynyslas birds seen were Black-headed and Herring Gulls, Oystercatcher, Stonechat, Wheatear, Linnet, Meadow Pipit and the stars of Ynyslas for me were the Gannets and Manx Shearwaters on and over the sea. Manx Shearwaters and a raft of Scoters ( I presume all Common) were viewed on the sea at Borth.
Linnet and Wheatear.
A tough plant that grows low to the ground binding the sand as it spreads.
Abundant in the grey dunes.
Cors Fochno (Borth Bog)
This passage has been taken from 'A Dyfi Discovery ~ Ynyslas And Beyond' :
This rare 'raised' bog is so called because the growth and decay of peat and moss over thousands of years has created a dome or hump. It is amongst the most impressive lowland raised bogs in Britain and, along with the saltmarshes of the estuary, has been designated a UNESCO biosphere reserve, the only one in Wales.
Cors Fochno (Borth Bog) is an interesting and very scenic area. I had acquired a permit (compulsory) from Ynslas Visitor Centre to visit the Bog. The main path is a boardwalk and an occasional bark footpath, the footpaths must be kept to given the hazardous environment. I would say Spring and mid-winter are the best times to visit here. Plenty of Dragonflies were flying around also Small Tortoiseshell, Gatekeeper and Speckled Wood butterflies. Several skeins of Canada Geese flew overhead, Robin and Blue Tit were the only other birds seen on this visit. The wide expanses of Heather looked a real treat in the sunshine and the Sphagnum mosses were also good to see. Willow and Silver Birch trees were amongst trees growing on the drier edges of the bog and Greater Birdsfoot Trefoil was plentiful. It was good to walk in a different habitat from Woodlands and Wetlands.
Common White Wave
Fourteen species occur here.
Greater Birdsfoot Trefoil
RSPB Ynis-hir is a delightful reserve, I just wish I lived closer to it.lol! There are Woodland, Wetland, Saltmarsh and a Boardwalk trail, the boardwalk trail takes you to the boggy woodland. Highlights seen in no particular order were Oystercatcher, Grey Heron, Little Egret, Mallards, Goosander, Canada Geese, Raven , Kestrel, Common Buzzard x 4, Curlew, Little Grebe, Willow Warbler, Robin, Blue & Great Tit, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Siskin, Pied Wagtail, Meadow Pipit, Nuthatch x 3, Treecreeper and Great Spotted Woodpecker.
Countless Swallows and Martins were seen in several locations throughout trip, also Starling flocks.
Dyfi Osprey Project
Two visits were made to Dyfi Osprey Project and the 3 chicks were seen (through bins and scope) on each occasion including the Male Osprey, the female has already migrated to her wintering grounds. A wonderful sight to see the chicks and a great achievement for all involved in the management of the project. Hopefully future years will be as successful as 2011 has been.
The reserve is a mixture of bog, swamp, wet woodland and scrub. A walk around the circular boardwalk gave great views of several Common Lizards sunbathing on the edge of the boardwalk and a Toad also enjoying the warm sunshine!
A great few days were enjoyed in a lovely part of Wales with spectacular scenery and Wildlife.