The sunshine brings some surprises at Goldcliff
|Dawn Breaks over a mirror calm Severn Estuary|
At last we have had a break in the rain. A stranger put in an appearance today at Goldcliff - "The Sun".
My day started on Goldcliff Sea Wall. I trudged along the coastal path, which resembled a quagmire, until I got to a spot that is about half a mile from Redwick. The mist had formed a white blanket over the fields and was spilling over the seawall onto the estuary. The Prince of Wales bridge was partially obscured by a thick cloud of mist and above it the sky had turned a pink colour. There was a really strong smell of smoke and apparently this was caused by a big fire that occurred at Newport docks.
|The Prince of Wales Bridge with a white tide of mist rolling in|
By the time I had reached the spot I had decided to set my tripod up at, the sky had turned a cool orange colour. The horizon had a thick band of cloud so the rising sun was hidden behind it but the orange glow was rising up above the wall of cloud, and being refracted down onto the waters of the Severn Estuary. The tide was on its way but there was hardly a breath of wind and the estuaries waters were mirror calm.
|The white mist spills over the seawall into the glowing orange waters of the estuary|
There was some bird activity at the shore line. Oystercatchers excitedly piped and the haunting calls of Curlews could be heard.
A strange looking goose came flying across the wall and having now at had time to study the photograph, it appears to have been a Brent Goose.
Eventually dawn reached its zenith but the burning disc never showed but it did warm the whole skyline up a wonderful orange colour.
|The clouds are back lit by the rising sun and it causes them to glow orange.|
I headed back along the wall towards Goldcliff Café. Marching towards me were groups of fisherman carrying all their fishing equipment. I was told that a swimming competition was taking place today and lots more were expected. That probably explained why a flotilla of small boats was heading along the shoreline.
In order to get to Goldcliff Lagoons today I decided to take a different route. I walked through the fields following the public right of way that brings you out behind the Redshank Platform.
As I walked through the fields I stopped to watch a big flock of Starlings that were feeding. Suddenly out of no where came a Merlin swooping in really low to the ground straight at the flock. The Starlings panicked and exploded into the air. The Merlin carried on heading towards the reserve.
The reserve looked busy as I approached. Yesterday there had been an incredible amount of species of Geese seen in Gwent - many of them at Goldcliff.
I think I am correct in stating the following had been seen -
- Brent Goose
- Barnacle Goose
- White Fronted Goose
- Bean Goose (This was seen today at Nedern)
- Pink Footed Goose
- Canada Goose
- Greylag Goose.
|Brent Goose on the saltmarsh between the Canada Geese|
|A flock of Grey Plover and a Dunlin|
|A male Merlin perched up.|
|Just look at that tail|
|Lovely looking bird|
|Black Redstart on the roof |
|My first relatively close encounter with a Black Redstart|
- Herring Gull
- Lesser Black Backed Gull
- Great Black Backed Gull
- Black Headed Gull
- Pied Wagtail
- Canada Goose
- Greylag Goose
- Brent Goose
- Blue Tit
- Great Tit
- Little Egret
- Grey Heron
- Black Redstart
- Grey Plover
- Reed Bunting
- House Sparrow
- Collared Dove
- Wood Pigeon
- Carrion Crow
- Glossy Ibis