My favourite remoter wildlife walk is in the northern corner of Anglesey, starting North Wales Wildlife Trust managed Cemlyn nature reserve. There is a varied choice of walks from here - the longer hike described in our Wildlife Walks book (see below) follows the Anglesey Coastal Footpath to Carmel Head and beyond. The shorter circular walk I am describing takes about two hours.
Between May and August your arrival at Cemlyn will be greeted by the magical sound of a thousand or more seabirds (Sandwich, common and Arctic terns) which breed in the lagoon. If the wind is blowing from the north, you may hear the sound of Atlantic grey seals ‘singing’ from the nearby rocky island.
Leaving the car park and heading towards the Trywyn (headland) you pass small sandy coves where you can see wading birds such as turnstone and ringed plover foraging in the seaweed. From April to September the Trywyn is spangled with a variety of wild flowers - spring squill and sea pinks in May to the purples and pinks of the heathland in July and August. On the shingle look out for the rare sea beet with its cabbage leaves and creamy flowers.
From the tip of the Trywyn it’s worth spending time scanning for porpoise and dolphin. Tracing the route back on the other side of the Trywyn, pass through the kissing gate, along the coastal path to the top of the small egg-shaped hill (actually a drumlin), formed at the end of the last ice age and a landscape feature here. The hill-top offers views of the lagoon across to the mountains of Snowdonia.
The beach through the kissing gate at the bottom of the hill makes a good picnic location and if the tide is in, seals sometimes come close to the shore.
Turning your back on the sea, take the public footpath across the field and turn left onto the lane. Follow the lane past the pools where you can hear sedge warbler, whitethroat and chiffchaff in spring.
Turn left at the junction enjoying views across the lagoon to the tern islands. Little egrets often roost in the shelter of the garden walls and in May the verges are full of bluebells and white stitchwort.
Back at the car park you may like to walk out onto the shingle ridge to enjoy the wildlife spectacle of terns flying overhead from the breeding colony.
Please note that the area is very sensitive to keep your dog on a lead to avoid disturbing the unique wildlife found here.
Find more descriptive text and maps on the walk above here: www.northwaleswildlifetrust.org.uk/shop
If you would like to find out more about wildlife walks across North Wales, when you become a member of the North Wales Wildlife Trust you receive a Wildlife Walks book for free. All you need to do is select ‘North Wales Magazine WB’ in the ‘How did you hear from us?’ section of the online form to receive your freebie.