It seemed almost tropical this morning, after the last few days. The icicles hanging from my roof, have almost disappeared; but unfortunately, a long way to go yet to thaw the lake. The north still remains almost totally frozen, but the south has an increasing unfrozen area in front of the houses.
I topped up the car park bridge, and added another fat ball to the feeder; walked to the road bridge, and fed the Mallards, and then quickly checked where yesterdays gull was frozen to the ice. No sign of him, so hopefully he managed to get free.
Back at the road bridge, I watched a Water Rail for a while, until the Mallards spotted me, and waddled over for some more food.
They eat more than I do!
I made my way round the north lake, but so much is frozen, there isn’t much there at all. A Grey Wagtail was up by the weir, and a few Blackbirds in the bushes, but that was about it. I did spot a Green Woodpecker, clinging to one of the trees, but he soon saw me, and made a quick exit.
A Swan carcass lay in the field, the other side of the river. When I first saw it, a Moorhen was picking over it, and then a Magpie flew down, and began to take some. A sad sight, but the death of one animal, means a few more survive a little longer.
Back at the road bridge, the Mallards spotted me again, so more food, before I made my way round the south lake.
I made my way to the bottom of the south lake, and found the tree that the Siskin favour. No sign of them; but then suddenly a huge flock flew in, and settled in the trees.
Easily a hundred or more. A fantastic sight to see.
Eventually I left there, and headed to the area of water by the houses. Canada, and Greylag Geese, Tufted Duck, Coots, Mallard, a couple of Goldeneye, Wigeon; a fantastic mix. And they got fed too.
Then back to the car park bridge, and top up the seed again. While I was there, another Water Rail was foraging under the bridge.
I watched him for a while, and then home.
A great morning.
Full list of today’s sightings
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Gadwall [sp] (Anas strepera)
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)
Water Rail [sp] (Rallus aquaticus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
British Herring Gull (Larus argentatus argenteus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Fieldfare (Turdus pilaris)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
Redwing [sp] (Turdus iliacus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Eurasian Siskin (Carduelis spinus)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)
Total species 43