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

Saturday, 31 December 2011

Last day of 2011

The weather was dull, and drizzly rain for a while; but the birds were bright.

I walked the south lake first, to have a look at the sizeable gull roost. And very noisy it was too.

Once it got lighter, I scanned through the remaining birds, but they were mostly Black-headed Gulls, and Lesser Black-backed.

A very distant glimpse of the Smew just off the island, and three female Goosander down by the rowing club. A couple of Little Grebe diving around there too.

Onto the north lake, and the Great Northern Diver was out in the middle of the lake.
Plenty of Tufted Duck, and a Grey Wagtail flying along the edge.

Up by the weir end, all the usual Wigeon, Coots and geese; and in the distance, a couple of boats heading their way. I watched as they got closer, sending all the birds skyward.

The occupants dragged their boats up the grassy slope, and I thanked Captain Ahab for clearing the water of birds.
He told me that's what the lake was for.......kayaks. He knew this, he told me, because he was part of the council.
Aaaaa, that must be a spare part  for the council then.

I made my way back towards the car park, and caught a glimpse of the 'diver', heading up towards the south lake.

I guess he was keeping out of the spare parts way.

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)
Smew (Mergellus albellus)
Goosander (Mergus merganser merganser)
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)
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)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
British Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major anglicus)
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 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)
British Bullfinch (Pyrrhula pyrrhula pileata)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  37


A sort of double post today.

I've cobbled a few of the video highlights from this year, together, and come up with the following video. It's a bit long; around 14 minutes.

Some of the other highs from the year, that didn't make it, for various reasons, (mainly I couldn't find them on my hard drive), and in no particular order, were,

The Black Swan. Always a favourite of mine, when they turn up. He appeared for 3 days in January, and once in March.
The Bittern; two appearances in January.
The Great Crested Grebe weed dance. Fantastic to watch, and so glad I managed to capture it on video. Buggered if I know where it is though.
The Water Rail, January and November, just the two appearances for me.
Black Tailed Godwit. He stayed for all of ten minutes on the 6th January, before disappearing.
The injured Common Gull. I first spotted him at the far end of the south lake, on the 22nd February. He looked as though he'd broken his wing, and I though he'd never survive the winter. To my amazement, he swam down to Cormorant island, where he stayed, and seemed to make good progress; and then after about 6 months, he just vanished.
The Black Terns. They were here for a few days in May, on the south lake.
The Lesser Whitethroat, that turned up on one day, at the end of April.
and finally the Brambling, that enjoyed the feeders by the footbridge, and stayed until almost the end of April.

Probably just as well that I didn't include them, the video would have lasted forever!


Oh yea, and the last video.
A sort of outtakes thing.
Doing a running commentary, I sometimes slip up, and the odd word slips in. Usually an expletive of some sort.
Most got sent to the bin, and a cleaner version got posted.
Some I kept for some reason. I had this idea of doing this video, mainly for myself, so if you don't like the odd word; it's usually bollocks, then don't watch it.

Anyway, have a great New Year.


  1. For some reason I managed to watch the lot today.
    I'm glad I did a wonderful end to the year.
    You have a good one this next year.

  2. A great post to end the year with Keith.

    Captain Ahab seemed to be doing a fine job of clearing the lake, at the tax payers expense!!

    And a super review video, a bumper year for birds at the lake, let's hope next year is even better.

    And the final's just a load of

    Happy New Year...[;o)

  3. HI Keith....Very good memorable videos from the year ...I loved that Blue Tits sharp looking nesting place ; } lol ....and the Dad Goosanders frenzy over the kids and the fish far to large for the poor wee
    That fish the Cormorant had today was a biggy, I have heard of there must be bigger fish in the sea, but he must be thinking there must be a smaller one lol!!
    When you came out with the Tweedledum and tweedledee statment I just lost it laughing ..the guy in the front canoe did look like them, but the guy in the back had on a helmet ..that was a killer lol!!
    Sorry ..enough
    Hugs Grace

  4. Three of 2011 are amazing, well done Keith. Have a gorgeous new year to you and Jim.

  5. Brilliant Keith..
    A big smile on my face as I bet you even edited the outtakes. ..
    My best wishes to you and Jim for 2012

  6. Thanks Adrian. All the best for 2012 to you and the canine crew.

    Cheers Trevor. Yea, this coming year is gonna have to go some to top this one.

    Thanks Grace. Glad you enjoyed it all today. I had a good time compiling everything. Lets hope 2012 is a cracker! :-)

    Thank you Bob.
    All the very best for 2012 to you too.

  7. Thanks Andrew. It's hard sometimes to keep ones emotions in check lol
    All the very best to you for 2012.

  8. Brilliant. A real triple treat today. Thanks for all the time and effort you have put in to your video clips throughout the year.

    Best wishes to you and Jim for 2012.

  9. Thanks John. A bit of a marathon today, in the video department. lol

    All the best to you and Bobby for 2012.

  10. "Works for the council" on a Saturday, a likely story. They will never make the Olympics this year Keith.

    Great Outtakes video Keith, I think you need to take more water with it.{:))

    Have a good 2012.

  11. WOW..what a great wrap up..the highlights are great--I recall seeing most of them, such fun..and the bloopers were FUNNY...that was a great idea to put that together!
    Hope this yr at the lake is a great one!!

  12. Cheers Roy. Yea, Mr. Council seemed a right prat.
    Off to start it all again soon.

    Thanks Sondra. Glad you enjoyed the videos. Can't wait to get round there again.

  13. I love these videos (and the idea of posting videos). So cool to hear your voice.
    Ignore the dumb nut 'Captain Ahab'. Winners are everywhere, sigh.

  14. Thanks Nicole.
    I came across another 'winner' today lol

  15. LOL, I'm afraid there's a bunch of them out there