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

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Great Northern Diver

Undoubtedly the star of Caldecotte Lake at the moment, is the Great Northern Diver.

A celebrity like this, certainly brings the twitchers out of the woodwork. I've never seen so many binocular/camera carrying folk in a morning. I suppose once the novelty wears off, they'll all disappear back whence they came.

Up in the tree tops, a group of about 30 Siskin briefly dropped in, before making their way further north.

Moving on from the Great Northern Diver, I made my way up to the top end of the north lake. Thankfully the water level hasn't gone down anymore, so I guess we just have to wait for a hefty downpour of rain for a few weeks, to bring the levels back up.

A quick fly by of a Sparrowhawk, before he descended in a hurry into some trees. He must have spotted breakfast.

By the weir, a Kingfisher sat in a bush, and then made his break across the lake.
One day.....

Swimming around with the Gadwall and Wigeon, was a male Shoveler, in fine plumage. A Little Grebe was harassed every time he surfaced, by a Black-headed Gull. I guess the gull thought he had a fish every time he surfaced.
On the steps, a Grey Wagtail was foraging, but was soon chased off by a Robin.

The morning had promise of some finer weather as I made my way round the south lake; shame it didn't happen though.

The new wader scrape, thanks to the water loss, still holds some great promise; although it's mostly attracted Canada Geese and Black-headed Gulls at the moment.
One jewel amongst them all, was a very distant Water Rail.

The lower water level has forced him to come out into the open a bit, and away from the shelter of the reeds.

Back at the car park, a quick check on the feeders, found this.

 So much for the chilli powder, that is supposed to deter these little buggers. He was positively revelling in it.

Hoping for a brief bit of sun, I made my way round to where the celebrity was, but the promise of sun soon turned to hefty shower.

I did bump into Trevor though, of Three CountiesHerald.

Full list of today's sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Gadwall [sp] (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)
Great Northern Diver (Gavia immer)
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)
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)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
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)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
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)
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  39


  1. A wonderful trip round today.
    That squirrel is a real star. You'll have to drill a hole in the can and put a long nail through.

  2. Cheers Adrian. Strangely enough, a nail; that's exactly what Trevor suggested. :-)

  3. HI Keith..first I have to say ,,,good going on keeping the profanity that you would have liked to expressed at a "G"level for general!!! ; }
    That last shot is histarical...I can't believe he got that can of there ...
    Try tying one of your dirty socks it! ; }
    That worked to keep the deer out of one of my plants they where eating lol!!
    Good thing they got the water problem taking care there a Dutch boy with his finger in the!!
    The Great Nothern Diver is a beauty..will he stay around...or is he just a visitor?

    Would you mind stopping by my post..I wondered what it was that
    made you aware of your heart problem in the begining!

    Hugs Grace

  4. Alternatively, just get one of those Paint kettles decorators use and let it have it's own supply. They are very bright wee things.

  5. Hi Keith.Great picture of the 'celebrity' and well spotted with the Water Rail.

    It was nice to catch up for a little chat, shame about the rain!

    After you left I decided to have another look at the 'Diver...and guess what?...the sun came out, It didn't help the picture taking any though!

    Now that's one smart Squirrel!!.....What I would suggest is you make a hole in the can and push through....ah!!

  6. Thanks Grace. The 'diver' could potentially stay until March; or be gone by tomorrow. I guess it's up to him. There are plenty of fish in the lake though, so he may stay a while.
    My heart attack just happened; no warning. But I did smoke a lot. lol

    Adrian, if I thought that would work, I'd try it. lol

    Cheers Trevor. I sat at home doing this blog, and noticed the sun shining outside. I forget now what I said.
    I think that squirrel is possessed!

  7. Oh Keith, the Great Northern Diver. That is a first time if I could have seen one. Never mind, at least you did.

  8. I had to laugh at the determination of that dear little squirrel, bless its heart.

    Such a joyous place you have to wander. ..

  9. Lovely to see you have the GN Diver Keith I have only seen them in Scotland although they have been seen locally...
    I can't remember the last time I burst out laughing (loudly and uncontrolled)as I have just done when viewing the squirrel head first in the feeder... Please send it into Autumnwatch and Birdwatching Magazine they will have to share it..
    Still laughing ..

  10. That is one smart squirrel. I thought maybe a screw would keep the lid on, but the nail is more that likely all you need.
    The Great Northern Diver looks a lot like our Loons.

  11. OH the squirrels cant be stopped no matter what you may as well get used to that...IVE been trying for years and still they are here TRYING all the time.
    SO the GND is the star of the show it is a beauty.

  12. Thanks Bob. It was a lifer for me.
    A great bird to watch.

    Thanks Gemel. That squirrel is certainly determined lol

    Andrew, the 'diver' is a great visitor to the lake. Attracting a lot of local birding interest.
    Hmmm, I'll think about sending the picture on. Especially Autumnwatch, since they suggested chilli powder, and there's loads on the nuts. lol

    Thanks Horst. I think the diver is the same as your Loons over there.
    Same family; we call them something different. Don't know why.

    Thanks Sondra. Yea, that squirrel and me are having a battle of wits. He seems to keep winning, at the moment lol