Personal musings, wanderings and sightings from around the lake.
A little history, and about the lake, at the bottom of the page.


Sometimes the picture doesn't have to be perfect; it's the captured moment that counts. - me

Saturday, 27 November 2010

That’s a first

Jim woke me at 3 a.m. this morning, so that was it; up early. It was cold, and cloudy, and by 5 a.m. a light dusting of snow.

A lot of Tufted Duck and Coot about this morning, and as I made my way round the lake, a total of four Kingfishers were seen today. A lot of the lake is starting to freeze over in places; something I’ve never noticed so early in the winter before.

A quick flash of a Snipe today; (they sometimes lurk at the north end, round the edges), and a few small flocks of Redwing, raiding the berries in the bushes, much to the annoyance of the Blackbirds.
And the boat people were about, putting a few of the ducks into the air. Must have been too cold for them today though, because they didn’t seem to be rowing for very long.

But it was the south lake today, which held the biggest surprises. Two Goldeneye, and three Teal. The first time I have ever seen Teal here.
A lone Shoveler, a couple of Little Grebe, half a dozen Pochard, and a few Tufted Duck, made up the numbers at the very end of the lake.

Walking round by the trees, I found a small group of Fieldfare with some Redwing, gorging on the berries; and another surprise was a flock of about 50 Siskins, that landed in the Alders.

 Siskin, taken under nightmare conditions.

Despite the cold, and the boats, a good morning. Two part video today; yea, sorry, I got carried away.

Full list of today’s sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Common Teal [sp] (Anas crecca)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Goldeneye [sp] (Bucephala clangula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)

Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)

Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Common Snipe [sp] (Gallinago gallinago)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Fieldfare (Turdus pilaris)
Redwing [sp] (Turdus iliacus)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Eurasian Siskin (Carduelis spinus)

Total species  35


  1. Hi Keith.. that looks bloody cold!! ; }
    We had snow yesterday , a little less than you, but cold.
    Nice to see Jim out with; you have a great companion!!
    A lot of ice going on ...what will all those birds do..does it freeze over completely??
    "Warm Hugs" coming your way!

  2. Thanks Keith, I'm going to miss the daily wander. Never ceases to amaze me that so many birds choose to live in a built up area. Food I suppose. Also a lack of folk with shotguns.

  3. Two more great videos Keith, It looked B****y cold out there this morning! Is Jim any good a pulling a sledge? Great photos of the Siskin, oh for some good light when you need it most.
    It`s also good to meet Jim, Happy Birthday for yesterday.

  4. Grammie, it certainly was cold. Almost unbearable at times. Last winter the lake almost froze over completely. One small area in the middle of the south lake, had most of the birds huddled there. I did find a couple of casualties, birds that had got frozen in the lake. Very sad to see.

    Cheers Adrian. I'm going to miss the daily visits too.
    It amazes me at times just how many species can be found through the year. Hoping for another Bittern soon.

  5. Thanks Trevor. Definitely brass monkey weather!
    Jim just about pulls his weight these days lol
    The Siskins couldn't have been in a worse place; white light behind them, and at the top of the tree. :(

  6. A beautiful moment that the Siskins bring, I haven't seen any yet, I suppose they come after you have them over there, about 3 weeks.

  7. Thanks Bob, they are lovely birds. Just a matter of time before you see some.

  8. As someone who has always been absolutely besotted with dogs it was a real thrill to meet Jim, please let us see him more often :) Happy belated birthday to him, my Louis will be 12 in February!

    What a shame that boat didn't hit an iceberg ;)

    Out of bed at 3am and in this weather! I am ashamed to admit I have occasionally only just got into bed at that time, I do wish I was a Lark and not an Owl.

    Both the videos were as brilliant as always and well done on the Siskins!

    Just in case you don't post tomorrow, very good luck for Monday.

  9. Jan, Jim says Thanks for the birthday greetings :)
    The boats didn't stay on the water long, thankfully, but I expect they will be there today. Might be the last visit today for a while :(

  10. The cold weather does bring something different Keith, there has to be some compensation.

  11. It certainly does Roy. Today had a good find.