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, 15 December 2011

Dancing Woodpeckers

A cold morning, early rain, still a bit breezy, but the sun managed to come out eventually.

The Great Northern Diver was in his usual spot opposite the pub, as I made my way round the north lake first. Tufted Duck, quite a few Coots, and Great Crested Grebes made up the main numbers, along with a few Cormorants fishing for breakfast.

Up by the weir, Gadwall and Wigeon, along with some Canada Geese and Coots.
About twenty Canada Geese were grazing on the grass by the edge of the lake, along with two Lapwing.

A Grey Wagtail flew along the shoreline, as I made my way up towards the pub.

A group of Cormorants were lazing on one of the boat jetties, and a lone Little Grebe was diving in front of the pub.

Apple time as I made my way towards the south lake, and the Crows appeared as if by magic.

On the grass ahead, I watched as two Green Woodpeckers performed a head wagging routine; almost like a sword fight with the long bills.

I'm guessing a territory dispute. The only similar sight like this I've seen before, was two Robins doing the same thing.
Fascinating to watch. Eventually one flew off, and left the other to continue feeding.

At the far end of the lake, a couple more Little Grebe, and a host of Black-headed Gulls on the wader scrape. Twenty or more Redwing were up in the tree tops,

much to the annoyance of a couple of Blackbirds.

Eventually I made my way to the feeders by the car park, for one last look before heading home. It was quite busy, with Blue Tits, Great Tits, Goldfinch and Greenfinch.
And a lovely Siskin too.


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)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
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)
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)
Redwing [sp] (Turdus iliacus)
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  38


  1. Excelled yourself today. One green woodpecker is a treat but watching two is fantastic. I suspect you can expect a few little woodpeckers.
    Send this to autumn watch and make them pay.
    I think you should be on the idiot lantern as you know. Sorry I should have said serious television. Makes you sound a bit daft put that way. Keep them coming it brightens a dull day.

  2. Truly beautiful woodpecker dancing.

  3. Thanks Adrian. It was fascinating watching these woodpeckers.
    Glad you enjoyed the video. I enjoy doing them.

    Thank you Bob. Something I've never seen before, so I was glad to capture it.

  4. Wonderful to see Keith... the Woodpeckers are lovely birds to see And I have never been that close and the Siskin is a lovely little bird to see.

  5. Excellent video Keith, great interaction between the Green Woodpeckers, well captured. And what stunning colour on that Siskin...{;o)

  6. The GW Behaviour. I just found another video on the net with similar behaviour and it was two males, I cant make out if yours were Keith. Perhaps its some kind of territorial marking.
    Rapiers at dawn, on guard and all that stuff.{:)) Brilliant. What a beautiful bird, the Male Siskin.

  7. Strange Behavior!! NICE that you witnessed it!! Very nice weather right now I have one more weekend of painting to do then IM done..

  8. Thanks Andrew. it was a good mornings outing.

    Cheers Trevor. Definitely a right place/time moment for the woodpeckers.

    Thanks Roy. Looking at some of the still pictures I took, one bird is certainly a male. I'm guessing it was two males, and a territory dispute. The Siskin was such a vivid colour. A real beauty.

    Thanks Sondra. It was fascinating to see. First time I've ever seen it. Glad you're weather is good; it's snowing here lol

  9. RE the woodpeckers - an interesting read here:

    Fascinating to watch.

  10. Thanks for that link John. Like you say, interesting read.
    A real special moment. I've uploaded a separate clip just of that, on YT.