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



Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Oystercatchers

There were seven Mallards around the car park this morning; word is spreading.

Topped up the feeders, fed the Crows, Magpies and Mallards, and then made my way to the north lake. The regular pair of Mallards were waiting, and as I started to feed them, an Oystercatcher flew over the road bridge, towards Cormorant island.
First one I've seen at the lake this year. Maybe they will breed again?

On towards the island on the north lake, and a single Kingfisher was sitting in the trees, by the edge. It would be great if they bred here too.

At the top end of the lake, not so many waterfowl as usual; but I did see a pair of Goosander. Up on the ivy clad wall, a female Mallard was wandering through the ivy looking for food, I presume.



 Her mate just stood watching from a distance.


A group of Wigeon were grazing as I made my way towards the pub, when I suddenly caught sight of another Kingfisher, just a few feet away.
Too late; he'd spotted me, and all I got was a fleeting piece of video, as he made his way across the lake. Hmmmm, one day!

A couple of Pied Wagtails in front of the pub, another pair of Goosander, and Mr and Mrs Mallard began swimming alongside, following me.

Onto the south lake, and no sign of the Crows this morning.
I felt let down in a way; I hope they're OK.

At the far end, to make up for it, the Robin was waiting by the bird hide. He still seems a little shy, but I guess he'll soon get over it. At least he knows I've got food.

Eventually I was level with Cormorant island, and able to have a good look for the Oystercatcher. I was in luck. Not one, but two; and they mated.
Now according to some software I have, they will start egg laying Mid-April to June, and usually lay  2, 3 or 4 eggs. If it's the same pair from last year, which is quite possible, they only successfully raised one chick. It's going to be good to follow their progress this year.


Back at the footbridge, a quick look round, and an inquisitive Blue Tit caught my eye.




A last look at the feeders, but not very much happening there.



Seems the islands have all the action at the moment.










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)
Goosander (Mergus merganser merganser)
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)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
British Herring Gull (Larus argentatus argenteus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
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)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  36


12 comments:

  1. It looks as if spring is well on the way with you. I wonder where the Crows have gone?

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  2. I love the spring Adrian.
    I think the Crows were probably tormenting yesterdays Magpies.

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  3. Looking forward to the patter of tiny Oyster Catchers.

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  4. John, I'm very excited myself. It's great to hopefully be able to see a side of nature that a lot of people don't get to see.

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  5. Looking forward to more on the Oystercatchers and nice to see a Heron again. You see more Kingfishers in a week than I've seen in my life so far!

    Mrts Mallard was very adventurous with her mountaineering ;-)

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  6. Hi Keith...You sound quite chipper this morning ; } lol!!
    Your are pretty excited about the Qyster Cathers..I have to do find out something about them...!
    The Kingfishers in yesterdays post where such a lovely color ..I hope You get a chance to get that good shot you want !
    Your Mallard just crack me up..now there playing King and Queen of the mountain..what in the world is with that lol...
    Hugs
    Grace

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  7. Nice to have met you the other day saw the pair of Kingfishers flying low over the water near the island and also watched the Grebes displaying ... but a long way out. keep up the good work

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  8. Excellent video Keith. After yesterday's Kingfishers and now today's Oystercatchers things are looking promising for a good breeding season around the lake. And I reckon Mrs. Mallard was prospecting for a nest site as well!...[;o)

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  9. The Mallard are in force, looking for somewhere to breed. And, I love the video, with a Oystercatcher at the end. Superb.

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  10. Another wonderful count today Keith..

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  11. LOVE is in the air I think....
    Time to make more birds for us to enjoy it will be fun to watch these Oystercatcher raise young!!

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  12. Thanks Jan. There's a few Kingfishers around the lake, so it's pretty much guaranteed to see at least one. That Mallard was funny to see up on that wall.

    Grace, I love seeing the Oystercatchers here. It's not really a lake that attracts shore birds/waders, and to have them breeding too, is very exciting. I've always loved this lake, and I'm loving it more every day lol

    Thanks Alan. Glad you got to see the Kingfishers and the displaying Grebes.
    Might bump into you again one morning.

    Trevor, it gets better every day here.
    I think I best make sure I keep the car door shut. lol

    Thank you Bob. The Oystercatchers were my highlight of the day. :-)

    Thanks Andrew. Hoping for a bigger count at the weekend; showing someone round the lake again. :-)

    Sondra, I think you're right. The birds all seem to be singing in the mornings, and showing off to each other.

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