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

Monday, 19 March 2012

Goosanders mating, Kingfishers and Blackcap.

A frosty start to the morning, but it soon gave way to some glorious sunshine, in a clear blue sky.

After topping up the feeders, which seem to be going down very quickly now, (I think the squirrel has perfected the art of sucking it out from the holes), and  feeding the Mallards under the road bridge, I mad my way round the north lake.

I spent a long time watching the activity of the Kingfishers, which seemed very busy getting on with things. At one point there were three. Maybe another male trying to muscle in on territory?

 These are very heavily cropped images.

A Grey Heron stood on the bank, sunning himself.

 Or maybe he was 'flashing' to two very disinterested Canada Geese, that happened to be swimming past.

There's a female Mallard, that is gradually getting used to me, as I walk past her every morning. A shame to see her struggle to get into the water usually.

 She's lost most of her left leg; but does seem to be managing quite well.

Up at the top end of the lake, a pair of Goosander were swimming around.
Well, actually the male was swimming; the female was lying prone in the water.

A quick picture, and then some video. I had a feeling there was going to be some mating, and I wasn't wrong. Captured it on video.
Three more males soon appeared, and lots of chasing in the water followed.

Further round the lake I could hear a Chiffchaff calling, and then noticed two birds fly into one of the trees. One left pretty quickly, followed by the other one.
I did manage a brief clip of the second one though........a female Blackcap.

The Crows on the south lake had their apple pieces and core, and at the far end, another Goosander and a couple of Little Grebes.

At the bird hide, I fed the waiting Robin, and then met someone I've got to know from walking round the lake; Graham. (not sure if I've spelt that right)

We stood chatting for a while, and trying to photograph a couple of elusive Little Grebes, when I got a phone call. Someone else I've got to know; Alan.

He told me that up on the north lake, a fox was busily sunning himself on the island.
This must be the same fox that Trevor had photographed a few weeks ago, on the island.

We quickly began to make our way there, stopping briefly to look on Cormorant island for the Oystercatchers.

 Another heavily cropped picture, but it looks like they've found their 'spot'.

Finally we met Alan, but about 10 minutes too late for the basking fox.
I did manage a poor shot of him in some undergrowth though.

He was busily staring at a group of Canada Geese, that were busily staring back at him. I don't think they'll be nesting on there this year; or if they do, I doubt they'll be very successful.

Last picture, for now, of a very obliging Reed Bunting.


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)
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 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)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
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)
Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  37


  1. Good to have a look around the lake again. Thanks.

  2. Cheers Adrian. Good to see you again :-)

  3. Ah, the mating season for birds, or pornithology as it's otherwise known!

  4. It's lovely to see your Kingfishers nest building.. I have a Robin building a nest in my garden... here's hoping.

  5. The two Goosanders were a bit shy, well the male does, it certainly seemed that way. Beautiful photos.

  6. Good title Graeme.
    I might do a compilation of all the various 'love' clips, and call it that. Post it, and see how many 'hits' I get :-)

    Thanks Andrew. It'll be interesting to watch the Robins progress.

    Thanks Bob. It did seem that the male was more interested in making himself look pretty at one point lol

  7. Lovely post again Keith. I still like the old boy in the raincoat whatever he was up to ;-)

    Poor Mallard, I wonder what happened there, it's amazing how adaptable they are though!

    Lovely photo of the Reed Bunting and good to see some lively, early Springtime activity on the lake.

  8. It's no good Keith. You will just have to beg, borrow or steal a longer lens so we can have closer views of the Kingfishers lol.

  9. Thanks Jan. Those Herons crack me up when I see them doing that lol

    John, if I could, I would.
    Hoping for a really sunny morning to try some with the 2X converter.

  10. That was a some great shooting Keith to get those KF going to the nest hole.

  11. That was a some great shooting Keith to get those KF going to the nest hole.

  12. Cheers Roy. A bigger lens would be good lol