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

quote

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



Thursday, 30 September 2010

Some days it’s good; and other days it’s better.

Despite not seeing some of the usual birds this morning, I still managed an impressive total of 38. The good weather must have brought them out; or maybe it was me getting up a bit earlier.

A mist hung over the lake, as the sun slowly burnt its way through. The spiders webs take on a special beauty on days like this.



And the sun cutting through the mist brings an air of mystery to the water.



Another mystery is how some cygnets have disappeared over the last couple of days. This family of Swans had seven healthy looking cygnets a couple of days ago,



they’re now down to 5. I’m guessing human predators, of a certain origin.
The usual Tufted Duck, along with the Coots, at the north lake, but minus the Wigeon today. Maybe they’ve moved on to Willen, up the road. The Gadwall were still here though,



and the Black Swan. And after seeing one Goldcrest at the south lake yesterday, I saw two at the north lake this morning. Good news.
A small flock of Lapwing flew over quite early, and a few Swallows and House Martins were back, hunting over the water. Someone else hunting, but unsuccessfully, was a Sparrowhawk. Caused a disturbance in some bushes, but left empty clawed.

Grey Wagtail, Little Grebe, Bullfinch, Chiffchaff and Jay, all worth a mention; and a picture to finish on, of a Mallard, of dubious parentage, but a magnificent orange bill.



It seemed to shine from across the lake.


Full list of today’s sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)

Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)

Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)

Gadwall [sp] (Anas strepera)

Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)

Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)

Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)

Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)

Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)

Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)

Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)

Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)

Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)

Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)

Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)

Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)

Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)

Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)

Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)

House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)

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)

Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)

Goldcrest [sp] (Regulus regulus)

British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)

British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)

British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)

British Jay (Garrulus glandarius rufitergum)

Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)

Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)

Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)

Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)

European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)

British Bullfinch (Pyrrhula pyrrhula pileata)

Total species  38

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

I’m late, I’m late……

Yea, I feel like the White Rabbit at times. The days are either getting shorter, or it’s taking me longer to do the things I used to do.

A bit later this morning going round the local, then I stopped off at Willen Lake, for a quick look, then back home, before the rain. But back to Caldecotte.

Black Swan still enjoying himself on the north lake, along with a few Wigeon, Tufted Duck and Gadwall. Plenty of Coots, Little Grebe still at the south lake, and a bird I’ve not seen at the lake since December 2008……….Goldcrest. Only one, but I’m sure if I look hard enough, I’ll find some more. At the same spot as before too. So, good to see him, after that last hard winter. I thought maybe they had all been lost; maybe not.

A couple of Swallows flew over the south lake, followed by a lone House Martin, so maybe that’s the last of those for now. There were quite a few Canada Geese flew in too, this morning. Water bird numbers are slowly increasing, along with the Black-headed Gulls; might be a bumper year this winter.




List of today’s sightings.

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Gadwall [sp] (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Goldcrest [sp] (Regulus regulus)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)

Total species  27 

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Sunday

A chilly autumnal morning round the lake, with flashes of sun, and spots of rain.
Swallows and House Martins are still hanging on, stocking up on the last of the flying insects over the lake, and a couple of Gadwall were new arrivals, and a lone Wigeon up on the north lake. No sign of the Little Grebe there, but counted the five still on the south lake.




There’s been a few reports of Gannets flying around fairly local to here, but none that I saw this morning. Lots of Cormorants and Coots still, and I glimpsed two Kingfishers, as they flew off into the distance. A large group of Mute Swans were taking advantage of a brief spell of sunshine, and crowded onto the grass by the pub.



And the Black Swan was still happily swimming around. I think this is the longest I’ve known him to stay. Up at the car park, where I start, plenty of Long Tailed Tits flitting through the trees. A very friendly Robin, Blue Tits, Chaffinch, Blackbirds, and a couple of Bullfinches. I’m sure it won’t be too long before the first Redwings make their appearance too.

A good selection this morning, despite the cool wind.


Today’s list

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Gadwall [sp] (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
British Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major anglicus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
British Bullfinch (Pyrrhula pyrrhula pileata)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species seen  36 
 

Saturday, 25 September 2010

What a difference a day makes.

Sunshine this morning, and a pleasant walk round the lake; although the wind had a bit of a chill to it.
Well, Swallows are back. I thought they’d left, but they were just sheltering from the rain. The south lake, on the western side, had a good few, flying around over the water, and skimming along the grass bank.



The east side, by the fancy houses, had a hoard of House Martins. Must be the good weather got them out of hiding. And at the bottom end of the south lake, I counted 6 Little Grebes this morning, and one still at the north end.
Black-headed Gulls in abundance, along with Coots, Herons, Cormorants, and Mute Swans all around the lake. The Black Swan is still on the north lake, and appears to have become mates with a Mute Swan, as they seem to be following each other around. Three Wigeon flew over, but didn’t notice if they landed or not. I’m sure they won’t be long before their numbers start to build here.
A fair bit of activity by the Mallard population,


flying in, the minute someone walks past with a bag. They are so used to being fed, and I’m sure they know it’s a weekend.

A good number of birds seen today, and quite a moment when a Sparrowhawk plunged from the sky into a group of House Martins, sending them all over the place. I don’t think a breakfast was on the menu though.

And I’ll finish on a picture, that I couldn’t resist. Two women feeding the ducks.



Yea……..the kid didn’t get a look in!



Todays list of sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
British Jay (Garrulus glandarius rufitergum)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  36

Friday, 24 September 2010

Friday

The weather was terrible this morning; non stop heavy rain, once I started walking the lake. After the heavy rain yesterday, I was thinking maybe some new birds might have dropped in. The only new arrival that I noticed, was another Little Grebe, up on the north lake, with the still present Black Swan. At the south lake, the 5 Little Grebes are still round the island.


Taken a few days ago when it was sunny. The 5 together, showing their derrières.

The Black-headed Gull numbers seem to be building up, along with the Coots and Cormorants. 


Tufted Duck still have the north lake, and plenty of Canada Geese about. Only a few Greylag Geese though; maybe they are having a break somewhere else. A lone Kingfisher flashed by in the distance, and the rest of today’s birds made up of the usual sightings. 


Full list of today’s sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)

Total species  27
  
 ******************************

I wish blogger would stop sodding about with the posting options. I can't get the text to go where I want it.


 

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Mid week

An early walk round the lake this morning saw the usual array of birds; Robins seemed to be singing from every bush and tree, Blue Tits cavorting with large numbers of Long Tailed Tits and Great Tits, and a small jangling flock of Goldfinches.
The regular Little Grebes at the south lake, and the Black Swan at the north. Four or five moving House Martins, quite high, and Herons all around the lake again, this morning.




The highlight for me today, was a quick flash of white against a tree; a Treecreeper, but he wasn’t staying for a picture.

And the school kids were out on rowboats again later, having a wonderful time, judging by the racket.


Full list of today’s sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
British Treecreeper (Certhia familiaris britannica)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
British Bullfinch (Pyrrhula pyrrhula pileata)

Total 31 species

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Tuesday morning

A late start going round the lake, and I was surprised to find mist over the water. No sign of a misty day when I left the house, but thankfully, it soon cleared.

Well after seeing hundreds of House Martins, and lots of Swallows, the last few days, it was strange to see empty skies. Well, there were three that flew over, and kept going. Maybe they’ve started their long journey now. I wish them luck.

A new arrival to the lake today, was a lone Pochard, up on the north lake. The Black Swan is still around, and seems to have settled on the north lake too, along with a good number of Tufted Duck.
Lots of school kids out on the north lake today; must have been some sort of school trip. They all seemed to be enjoying themselves, judging by the racket they were making.


Coots are abundant all around the lake, along with Mute Swan, Cormorant, and Heron. Good to see so many. 

  
A fleeting glimpse of a Song Thrush in the bushes this morning, and a couple of Jays flying over were good highlights to see; as were a couple of Grey Wagtails at the north lake.
And down south? The Little Grebes still there.



A group of Cormorants try to look interested, as one describes the size of the fish he almost caught. 



Full list of sightings follows
  
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
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)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
British Jay (Garrulus glandarius rufitergum)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)


Total species  30
 

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Weekend

An early walk round the lake this morning; before the sun got up.

Lots of House Martins again, over Derwent House, one of the fancy housing blocks. Amazing sight, to see so many in the air. Smaller groups of them dotted all around the lake too, with quite a few Swallows mixed in, and one Sand Martin I noticed. I’ll miss these when they’ve gone.
Plenty of Mute Swan around the lake too. Many of them look to be quite young.



The Black Swan has turned up again, on the south lake, but a lot of boats out in the early morning sun, so he might not stay. Half a dozen Chiffchaff seen and heard right round the lake this morning, and plenty of Herons too. Cormorant numbers are steadily building up, but only saw 5 Little Grebes today. Maybe one has become lunch for someone. And the Starlings are building up numbers too, around the pub.

A couple of Grey Wagtails with the large numbers of Pied Wagtails on the grass in front of the pub, and the Black-headed Gulls are favouring one of the boat jetties nearby.
But for sheer numbers, at least on the water, it has to be the Coots.




A good morning. Hope everyone has good weekend.


Full list of birds for today

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Sand Martin [sp] (Riparia riparia)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
British Bullfinch (Pyrrhula pyrrhula pileata)

Total  35 species
 

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Good birds, crap pictures

Still plenty of House Martins flying round the lake this morning, with Swallows, and I did find one Sand Martin mixed in with them. I’m sure they will be making their long journeys soon, so I’ll enjoy them while I can.

The light this morning was amazing, although only briefly, and this picture does not do it justice,



but believe me, it was worth getting up for.

It was good to see Kingfishers too, this morning. Five altogether, two were busily chasing each other round one area of the lake, so I’m guessing an adult bird moving on a youngster?
 

A crap picture of a stunning bird. One day I’ll get a decent shot of a Kingfisher, but I’m happy to just see so many round the lake at the moment. I’m sure their numbers took a heavy knock during the winter, so it was good to see 5 of them this morning.


Another crap picture today, of the Grey Wagtails.


 
Quite a few of these round the lake still; not as many as the Pied Wagtails, but certainly more than I’ve noticed in the past. The Little Grebe’s are still at the south lake, and the Coots are building up their numbers, along with the Tufted Ducks.


Todays list of sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Sand Martin [sp] (Riparia riparia)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Willow Warbler [sp] (Phylloscopus trochilus)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species 33

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Where are all the House Martins?

They’re all here! Hundreds, literally, this morning. All around the lake, the sky was full of them,


(Doesn’t really do the numbers justice)
 

and at the north end, close to the weir, I stood, as they swooped and dived all around me, skimming past my head with inches to spare. A good number of Swallows mixed in with them too. Amazing to just stand, and have them flying all around.

At the pub, the usual numbers of Pied Wagtails, with about 3 Greys with them. The Coots are still the probably the most numerous on the lake, although the Canada Geese seem to be catching them up in numbers. A few more flew in this morning. 


(not sure what the twisting is in aid of)

At the south end, there are now 6 Little Grebes, swimming by the small island, and plenty of Herons all around the lake, silently fishing; but very vocal when disturbed.

   

Both ends of the lake still have small groups of Tufted Duck, and I expect these numbers will begin to increase over the weeks.

  


Full list of sightings today

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  32
 

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Saturday

I deserted the local yesterday, and went to Sandy. A wet day there, and not much better here this morning. A drizzly intermittent rain; but I persevered, and did a slow walk round.
It didn’t seem as though I saw many birds, and I was surprised when I got home, that I hadn’t taken any pictures. 
Plenty of boats out on both parts of the lake, and joggers jogging round, and dog walkers walking round.

A full list at the end of the birds I did see; probably the highlights being a beautiful Hobby just cruising overhead, and also the blue flash of two Kingfishers.

There were plenty of House Martins high above the fancy houses at the south lake, and the north end of the lake had a good few Swallows and more House Martins. No sign of the Wheatear though.
Good to see the Little Grebes still around, and quite a few Tufted Duck gathering now on the north lake. Pied Wagtails still on the grass outside the pub, and a couple of Grey Wagtails flew over.



 Full list of today's sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Eurasian Hobby [sp] (Falco subbuteo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  30

Thursday, 9 September 2010

A first at the lake for me

I nearly didn’t go round the lake today; I almost went somewhere else.
And I nearly didn’t do the north lake; I almost went home.

Glad I didn’t on both counts.

What started as a cloudy morning, soon brightened up, and the sun came out; bringing with it a few birds. I spent a long time just by the car park, watching Blue, Great and Long Tailed Tits.


Blue Tit, playing in the long grass.

A family of Bullfinches, with young, a Wren, a Chiffchaff and lots of Cormorants flying overhead, I wondered if I should just stay put, and let the birds come to me.

Well, eventually I made my way round the south lake, adding to the list as I went. Canada and Greylag geese, Swans, the armada of Coots; and right at the bottom end, the Little Grebes. No sign of the Wigeon today, but overhead a few Swallows and House Martins. And then in flew a Little Egret, and perched himself up in a tree, on the little island.


A long way off, and the best I could manage.
 
Well, then it was decision time. Do I go back, or carry on round the north lake. My feet were aching, I felt tired………….I carried on.

Overhead a Buzzard was riding the sky, a great sight to see, and a small flock of Pied Wagtails on the grass in front of the pub. Past the Cormorants sunbathing on the boat jetty, and up towards the weir. About half a dozen Tufted Ducks moved towards the centre of the lake, and as I reached the steps to climb up, down, and finish my circuit, something caught my eye ahead. 
Something I’ve not seen here before. 
A first for me, here.




A Wheatear. What a nice surprise that was. You get two pictures of this one, ‘cause I was so pleased to see one.



And the full list for today, follows.


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Northern Wheatear [sp] (Oenanthe oenanthe)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
Willow Warbler [sp] (Phylloscopus trochilus)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
British Bullfinch (Pyrrhula pyrrhula pileata)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)
   Total  34 species

Enjoy your day.