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



Friday, 5 February 2016

Ferruginous Duck



Myself, Whisky and Trevor, took a walk round the lake this morning.



I'd received an e-mail last night from someone who lives by the lake, that he'd seen a rather special duck there yesterday.

Just had to go and look.





A rather stunning male Ferruginous Duck.










A real treat to see. We spent a few hours there this morning photographing this beauty.







And some video too.







A bit of an overload of pictures this post, but it was a rather special duck.





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)
Red-crested Pochard (Netta rufina)
Ferruginous Duck (Aythya nyroca)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
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)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
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)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  37





Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Red Crested Pochard




Dull and cloudy to start, few spots of rain here and there, and by the time we were headed home, the sun came out. Oh well.


Whisky had a great time today. He met a few dogs that he knows, and he wore himself out.


There were some good birds today too.

By the car park a Song Thrush was singing heartily, while down below a Redwing was foraging in the leaf litter.





In between a party of Long Tailed Tits were sweeping through the branches.



Under the road bridge, and on towards the north lake, and the gang of Mallards spotted me; so a quick feed for them, and we carried on.


We soon met up with Whisky's 'friends', so not many pictures or video for a while.


At the top end of the north lake, a Little Egret was along the side of the river, and a Little Grebe was swimming around amongst the Coots and Wigeon on the lake.




On towards the south lake, and I found my first Cowslip of the year pushing its way through the grass.


At the far end a Kingfisher, and after feeding the Robin, we made our way towards the car park.


And, there it was; a Red Crested Pochard.






Took a few pictures, and then as we almost reached the car park, the sun came out.



A quick look round the bushes opposite the car park, and we found this Robin happy to pose in the sunshine.






Great visit, as always.










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)
Red-crested Pochard (Netta rufina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
British Herring Gull (Larus argentatus argenteus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
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 Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
Redwing [sp] (Turdus iliacus)
British Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus rosaceus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
British Coal Tit (Periparus ater britannicus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  33



Sunday, 17 January 2016

Black on White




Could be the title of a porn movie, but sorry if you're disappointed; it just refers to a Black Swan, and the first snow of the year here.


A very small portion of the north lake today, as it was incorporated with a much larger walk with Whisky this morning; but I felt it was worth a post, if only for the returning Black Swan.






No video today.


That's it.



Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
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)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)


Total species  25



Friday, 25 December 2015

Black Swan, Goosander and Lesser Redpoll


After myself and Whisky had our usual early morning walk, I decided we'd take a wander over the lake.


Cloudy start to the morning, with a chill in the air.





Not many people about this morning, but we did meet a couple of early morning dog walkers, so Whisky had a good time running around.


There's been a Black Swan here for a few days, so I managed a couple of shots.





A shame the sun wasn't shining.



Shortly after seeing him/her, I spotted 3 Goosanders ............. 2 males and 1 female.

While I was doing a bit of video, a Kingfisher happened to fly into view too.


One of the strangest things I saw this morning was a Musk Mallow, in flower, on Christmas Day.



 These usually flower in June. The weather really has gone crazy.




Quite a few Canada Geese around this morning, plus the usual group of Mallards 'quacking' for some food. Good that Whisky doesn't go charging after them either.



Not very much else as I walked the south lake, until I reached the far end.

I decided to walk alongside the bushes by the railway line for a change; glad I did.


A small group of Lesser Redpoll were feeding on some seed heads of what I think was Rosebay Willowherb.






By the time I reached the rowing club, it was starting to rain, thankfully not too much.


A quick look round the hedges back at the car park, but nothing extra to see.
One thing though. This time of the year, the cold and frost, would have killed of the growth of nettles. Not at the moment though.
The grass was full of new shoots of nettles pushing through. Makes me wonder if it will smother the  Primroses and Cowslip in the spring.













Full list of today's sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
British Herring Gull (Larus argentatus argenteus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Fieldfare (Turdus pilaris)
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)
Lesser Redpoll (Carduelis cabaret)


Total species  31




Sunday, 20 December 2015

Goosander, Lapwing and Daffodils



A very quick visit to the south lake today, after our usual early morning walk and run, in the hope of getting a half decent sunrise.




A sizeable gull roost stretching between the two islands this morning, but too dark in the early light to see much. The boats were making an early start too, and by the time it was light enough for pictures, the gulls had left.



On to the field under the railway arch for the sunrise, and another disappointment.


No where near as good as I'd hoped. Oh well, at least Whisky was getting a good walk this morning.


I started to walk back to the car park, and overhead about 40 Lapwings were circling around. A nice surprise.




 Maybe they'd flown over from Willen Lake.




Around by the houses and my second surprise of the morning.




A male Goosander.


I hadn't noticed him earlier when I walked down to the far end of the lake.
Just the one today; the early light not as good as it is now .................... bright sunshine as I do this.




Finally, almost back at the car park, and a group of Daffodils caught my eye.




 Spring bulbs in December, crazy.


The weather has gone mad this year, it's been so mild.



Someone who's probably enjoying the mild winter weather at the moment though, along with his pals, was this Robin.




 No snow yet. Something to sing about.











Full list  of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Gadwall [sp] (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Goosander (Mergus merganser merganser)
Common Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
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)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)


Total species  25




Friday, 4 December 2015

Goosanders



Myself and Whisky had a very long walk around the lake today.


A four hour journey that was twofold.


Someone I've met when I've been walking the lake in the past, asked me if I could take some pictures of her for a project she has in mind. Of course I said I would, so 2 hours before we were due to meet, myself and Whisky decided we would go round the lake first, to see what was about.


All the usual suspects, and now 2 male Goosanders on the patch.






Both lakes completed, we then met up for our photography project, and walked the south lake again.



Nothing extra seen, but an enjoyable and different day.



No video today, but here's a Full list of birds seen.


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)
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 Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
British Herring Gull (Larus argentatus argenteus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
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)
British Treecreeper (Certhia familiaris britannica)
British Jay (Garrulus glandarius rufitergum)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)


Total species  32



Thursday, 26 November 2015

Goosander



An enjoyable walk round the lake this morning, and despite the dull conditions, managed to see some good birds.



After leaving some leftover grapes and bread for the birds on the grass in front of the car park, myself and Whisky headed for the north lake.
A Buzzard flew over heading north, and shortly after a Red Kite was flying in the opposite direction. A good start.



Plenty of Herons about.





Whisky seems fascinated by these large birds.




I began to meet a few other dog owners as we made our way round, which is good for the boy to socialise with other dogs. All of today's dogs were friendly, but sadly sometimes the odd few aren't so pleased to see other dogs.



At the top end of the north lake, a few Wigeon; but nothing like the usual numbers at this time of year. Some Tufted Ducks, Coots and a few Mallards were the rest, and at the gully, near the weir, a Grey Wagtail.


As I got passed the pub, amongst a group of Canada Geese, was a lone Barnacle Goose.




 I'd seen him here a couple of days ago, when I walked over here with Whisky.




A group of Mallards flew over, apparently recognising me as the 'seed man'.
A couple of handfuls for them thrown on the ground, and as we walked away to let them feed in peace, they were quickly joined by some Crows.




Up to the south lake, and a couple of men with some measuring instruments were looking busy.
Surely not surveying to build houses?
My curiosity got the better of me, so I asked.
Seems they were from Anglia Water, and they measure the dam every year about this time, to see if it has moved. I was surprised to learn that the 'dam' was the grass bank we were walking on.
Well, you learn something every day.



At the far end, an orange flash caught my eye.
A Kingfisher flew into one of the bushes at the side of the water.




Not the best of shots, but you can see what it is. I'm not one to pay money and sit in a hide to get close.



I walked up to where I used to feed the Robin, to leave some seed for him.
No sign of him, but I left some seed anyway. Something will eat it.



Towards the rowing club, and a group of Tufted Duck were swimming away from the edge as I got nearer.




A single male Pochard was with them.




As I neared the big houses, and the end of our walk, out amongst the gulls and Coots on the water, was a male Goosander.





As I walked round to the side where he was, he inevitably drifted back to the side I'd come from. Typical!!



I watched him for a while, and a group of House Sparrows taking a bath in a puddle,





and then it was time to head home.










Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Barnacle Goose (Branta leucopsis)
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)
Red Kite [sp] (Milvus milvus)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
British Herring Gull (Larus argentatus argenteus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
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 Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)

Total species  34