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

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Sand Martins

Spring is officially here now, with the arrival of the first Sand Martins at Caldecotte.

I counted 5 altogether, on the south lake, this morning. A great sight, to see them hunting over the lake, after their long journey here, from Africa. Ain’t birds brilliant!

The usual suspects were at the footbridge; even before I started to put some seed down, and then I was off to see the Sand Martins, over the south lake. I could have watched them for hours, as they refuelled on the insects over the lake, after their long flight here.
Swifts, House Martins and Swallows next!

A Buzzard dared to fly over the lake, but was soon escorted away by a lone Crow; and at the far end of the south lake, a couple of Little Grebe, in their usual place. A pair of Shoveler were a surprise find, as I made my way back towards the car park, and it was good to see the Common Gull still hanging in there, at the Cormorant island.

Around the north lake, and at the top end, three female Goosander were making themselves look even greater, on the old boat used by the Cormorants.

 Two of them.

A lone Wigeon, a pair of Pochard, and a few Tufted Duck, is all that remains of the winter ducks now. I guess their absence makes way for the spring migrants.

Back at the footbridge, a Chiffchaff was calling, but being difficult to photograph; but a Treecreeper was a little more obliging.

An excellent morning again.

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)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Goosander (Mergus merganser merganser)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
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 Gull (Larus canus canus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Sand Martin [sp] (Riparia riparia)
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)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  38


  1. The Tree Creeper is superb and the video is just brilliant as usual.
    Human is awful. in some ways better the snow and fog.

  2. Good for you with the Sand Martins, but, what a work of art, the Treecreeper, you've done it.

  3. Two super photos Keith.Lovely Tree Creeper :0)

    And the first Sand Martins of the year, wow, the epic journeys these little birds undertake every year just amazes me!

    And a nagging Mallard just for good measure.Lol.

    An excellent post.

  4. What a fantastic Treecreeper photo Keith!!! You must be really pleased with that. Lovely photo of the Goosanders too.

    Good news about the Sand Martins, things are really moving now :)

  5. PS. Good title............I'll remember that one. Sand Martins You Saw!.....I did catch a glimpse.
    Glad you have your humour back.

  6. Thanks Adrian. Glad you spotted the Sand Martins :)

    Thank you Bob. The Treecreeper posed beautifully ;)

    Thanks Trevor. Quite a journey these little migrants make isn't it.

    Thank you Jan. I was pleased with today's efforts.

  7. Thats a great Treecreeper shot Keith,

  8. Thanks Roy. I was pleased with this one.

  9. HI Keith...well I hate to sound like a broken record, but I'm sure your not tired of hearing what a wonderful photo you have here of the Tree Creeper..real nice!!
    You sounded like you was in a real chipper mood today. ; } Very good video!!
    What this nagging stuff lol Perhaps the Mr. needed a talking to!!! lol
    Hugs my friend!!

  10. Thanks grammie. I've a couple of pictures of the Treecreeper I was pleased with. Maybe another on my other blog, if the computer holds out. It's temperamental when it eventually boots up.

    Probably not so chipper this week; I'm on earlies, and working every day till next Monday lol

  11. Fantastic birds and captures. Im still waiting for the birds to come home to the North from the South.. No geese yet or cranis and they come first with the ducks and swans. I cant wait. I may not capture them like this but I will sure be outside to welcome them home.

  12. Wonderful photos .. love seeing the birds and learning a little more .. the tree creeper .. no wonder he's called that.

    Birds are truly amazing aren't they - their travels around the world ..

    Cheers - Hilary

  13. A lovely time of year Lisa, with all the new arrivals.

    Hilary, thank you. Birds certainly are amazing.

  14. Wonderful BIRDS on your list for this post--ITS always fun to see the spring arrivals come in--
    Excellent photo of the creeper--and the goosanders too!!

  15. Thanks Sondra. I think this and a few others were my best efforts with the Treecreeper.
    A great time of year now for the birds.

  16. Hundreds of Sand Martins arriving on my patch in Cheshire (sunday the 27th) a beautiful sight to see.

  17. Nice one Andrew.
    I'm looking forward to getting back round the lake properly soon, and see what other birds have arrived.