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, 3 January 2013

On the third day

I could get round the lake.

The levels have gone down a lot; most of the paths around the lake are accessible, apart from up at the gully, and under the feeders it's mostly just muddy.
I could top them all up this morning, apart from a couple, which hopefully I can do tomorrow.
The fallen tree has gone, and the one next to it, has been cut right back. It was in a dodgy state, but I'm told it will soon recover.

Something I've been thinking about recently, is, if you could come back as a bird, what would you choose to be?

Imagine there are no more humans left, and you get a chance to come back as a bird.
Anyone of the 300 odd ones we get here. A regal Swan, perhaps? A small songbird? Remember whatever you choose, you'll not be hunted, poisoned or shot by humans, so you could even pick a bird of prey.
You'll maybe have to think about the need to be adaptable, or intelligent.
I'll let you know my choice tomorrow.

I may well ask questions of such magnitude in the future.
I may not though, especially if I don't think of any.

But, back to today.

All the usual regulars were here on the north lake; the various tits, Blackbirds, lots of gulls, and a Crow busily harassing a Sparrowhawk overhead.

At the top end, the path by the gully was still bad, so a detour over the river, and up by the pub. A lot of Canada Geese grazing there, and pretty soon the Mallards came over, as I walked along the path.
After feeding them, I made my way towards the south lake; and the Crows.

Through the binoculars, over on the far side, I could see a pair of Goosander, lots of Tufted Duck, and quite a few Pochard.
A good number of mixed gulls too, bobbing around on the water.

A quick look in the field at the far end, had hundreds of mixed Crows and Wood Pigeons. A great sight to see.

After feeding the Robin by the bird hide, I was soon heading towards the rowing club.

I watched the pair of Goosander for a while, and noticed the female starting to lay prostrate on the water. Mating time? Well, the male seemed more interesting in preening and drinking, so no action for him yet.
I've noticed in the past though, the males seem to need a lot of encouragement; unlike Mallards that seem to perform at the drop of a hat, or bob of the beak.

The path round by the houses is now negotiable too, but not many birds in the bays; and finally I was back at the car park.

Good to be able to get right round again.

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)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
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)
British Herring Gull (Larus argentatus argenteus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
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)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  35


  1. Keith, they've certainly let the light in by removing those trees, I guess they're not going to replace them?

    Enjoyed the video and the longer walk! It's good to see the water level is back to near normal now...but for how long?..!!!

    I've given your question a good deal of though and the bird I think I'd be is a...RedKiteCarionCrowCormorantMandarinDuck....I could then soar freely and effortlessly high in the sky for hours and hours on end and then when I felt a bit peckish I could use all my intelligence and cunning to scavenge for all the best and most disgusting food I could find (I take it that there wouldn't be an easy supply of apples?) and if that wasn't enough to satisfy me I could fall back on my excellent fishing skills and then if I felt a bit down with life I could raise my spirits by looking at my beautiful reflection in the water!

    I hope that answers your question and if you come up with any more you can.......[;o)

  2. I'm told the tree that has been cut right back, will soon re-grow. I don't think any others will be planted there though.
    Interesting choice of bird lol
    On Twitter I had a suggestion of Shearwater and 'spend my life travelling the ocean'.
    I'll do mine tomorrow. :-)

  3. I would have to say is the Waxwings, they are beautiful. Second is the Bullfinch and third is Hawfinch, but I can't guess right away. That is the British ones, what about those that live in other countries. Scrub that out, I'll start again, phew, it will take a long long time.
    At last you can feed your babies, nice one Keith.

  4. Glad you got a walk. Good to see the inundation has de-inundated.
    I'm going to come back as a Mallard. Plenty of bonking and lazing around. I can shout if I want to and no other birds would take a blind bit of notice. It would be nice to be a Goldcrest or a Dipper but I'd have to spend all day looking for food.

  5. Thanks Bob. Not easy to be a bird lol

    A good choice Adrian.
    No-one has come up with my choice yet. :-)

  6. I know you enjoyed the lake today with being able to get around all of it for a change! I would love to be a snow goose! They make a fantastic migratory journey each year and they are a peacful bird that eats roots and mates for life. I have never seen one and cant wait till I Do see one!

  7. Thanks Sondra; and a great choice. A pretty adaptable bird.
    I'll reveal mine later. :-)