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



Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Two quick visits

Better late than never..............perhaps.


Going to take a break from all this for a few days, so two very quick visits today; morning and afternoon.


I just stayed around by the feeders and the road bridge for both visits, but still managed a few good birds.








Full list of today's sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Great Northern Diver (Gavia immer)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
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)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
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)
British Treecreeper (Certhia familiaris britannica)
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)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  30

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Diver still here

A lot of rain last night, but still the mist is hanging around.

I walked the south lake first, for a change.

A quick glimpse of a Little Egret, as he flew from Cormorant island, stood briefly at the new shore, and then left.

A Kingfisher sat up by the rowing club; it seems to be a favourite haunt of his recently, and further along the path, a Heron was in his favourite spot.
A couple of Mistle Thrush sat high in the trees by the railway, and the scrape had attracted plenty of Black-headed Gulls.

A small group of Shoveler flew in, and settled out in the middle of the lake, and I noticed a couple of Teal too. Overhead quite a large group of Lapwing were heading south.

As I got under the road bridge, the Great Northern Diver, was fishing as best he could.






A little harassment now and then from a couple of Black-headed Gulls, and two low swoops by a Heron; but it didn't seem to put him off. I stood watching him for a good 30 minutes. So graceful when he dives.

The top end, by the weir, had the usual Wigeon and Gadwall, along with plenty of Coots.

At the footbridge, by the bandstand, a young Heron was slowly creeping along through the reeds.




He hadn't noticed me, but another Heron soon noticed him; and chased him away from the area.

By the time I'd got back to the road bridge again, there was no sign of the diver.

Maybe he'd moved further along towards the south lake.










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)
Common Teal [sp] (Anas crecca)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Great Northern Diver (Gavia immer)
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)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
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)
British Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major anglicus)
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)
Mistle Thrush [sp] (Turdus viscivorus)
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)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  40

Monday, 21 November 2011

Great Northern Diver still here

Misty morning, but not as bad as yesterday.

A lightening visit this morning, just the north lake. A lot of things to do today.

Topped up the feeders, and noticed that they don't seem to empty as quickly, as they used to. I guess the new squirrel proof feeders are working. Worth the extra expense I think.

All the usual and regular birds this morning, but no sign of the diver at his usual spot.


But as I began my walk to the road bridge, to cross over the lake, I saw him surface in the area just outside the pub. Good to see, and I managed plenty of video.


Off to the shops, and stopped to pick up my prescription on the way home.
I stopped taking most of my tablets some time ago; didn't like the side effects.
The pharmacist asked if she could take my blood pressure.
Oh dear.
Seems it's higher than a kite on a windy day.
She suggested I see the doctor ASAP.

I think I'll cut down a bit on the drink.








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)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Great Northern Diver (Gavia immer)
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)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
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)
Redwing [sp] (Turdus iliacus)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  29

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Foggy


A very foggy start to the day this morning. Difficult to see anything on the lake, so my attention was drawn more to the trees and bushes.

Wood Pigeon, Wren, Song Thrush, Robin, Chaffinch and Goldfinch, to name but a few; and those on the water that I did see, were Tufted Duck, plenty of Coot, Wigeon and Gadwall.

The fog can sometimes bring down some extra birds; but only if you can see them.
It was quite thick this morning.

I did a circuit of the south lake first this morning, thinking that maybe the fog would clear quickly. The south lake sometimes has less species than the north; plus the diver is at the north.

The fog persisted.

I arrived at the north lake.

At the pub, a Crow was enjoying a crayfish, he had managed to catch from the edge of the lake.




The low water levels are benefiting some birds.

The fog was still hanging over the water, despite the best efforts of the sun to shine through.




Up by the weir, a good number of Wigeon and Gadwall, with the Coots, and Green Woodpeckers laughing as they cut through the fog.

I got to the spot where the Great Northern Diver has been hanging around  for a few days, but the fog was still thick, limiting what could be seen.
The only diver I could see was a juvenile Great Crested Grebe.




At least he was co-operative .


Back at the car park, a quick check on the feeders, and then back home.








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)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
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 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)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  31

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Saturday 19th November 2011


A misty start, that soon gave way to some glorious sunshine in a clear blue sky.

The squirrel proof feeder seems to be doing the trick now; thankfully.

Working my way round the north lake first, I quickly caught up with the Great Northern Diver, fishing in his usual place. It wasn't long before he disappeared though; moving out into the main part of the lake.


A couple of Crows were busily probing the muddy edge, looking for some tasty treats.




Grey and Pied Wagtails were on the newly uncovered stony edge to the lake, and try as I might, I couldn't manage a picture of both in the same frame unfortunately.



 Pied Wagtail


Up by the steps, I caught up with the diver again, out in the main part of the lake; but he soon went back to his usual spot once the boats got out.
Hopefully they won't scare him off over the weekend, with their noisy tooing and frowing.

By the weir, the usual crowd of Wigeon, Gadwall and Coot; and a Kingfisher flying across the lake.
A lone Lapwing flew slowly overhead, then turned, and flew back.

Round the south lake, at the far end, the new wader scrape is still host to numerous Black-headed Gulls, and the odd Common Gull.




I noticed four Little Grebes swimming around too, but always too far away for pictures.

Past the rowing club, and back towards the car park.

Just in front of Cormorant island, a Great Black-backed Gull took to the air, disturbed by the boats.



 Arty? Or farty?


A couple of male Mallards were having an argument,




which gave me an excuse to try more arty farty shots.


A quick check on the feeders, and things were quite busy with Goldfinch and Greenfinch.
In the shallow area of the water, a Siskin was bathing alongside a couple of Goldfinch.

A long walk round this morning, stopping to talk to lots of people; but very enjoyable in the spring like sunshine.








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)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
British Herring Gull (Larus argentatus argenteus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
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 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)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Eurasian Siskin (Carduelis spinus)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  41


Friday, 18 November 2011

A quick visit

Just a dash round the north lake this morning; a vet appointment for Jim later.

The Great Northern Diver is still around, and it was good to get a few pictures in some sunlight.




Because they have such a dark eye, I was determined to capture a shot or two that had a catchlight in the eye.
I think I succeeded.

A Kingfisher was again up by the weir, but no pictures today. I was on the phone to the vet.

The adapted squirrel proof nut feeder is in place, so I'll have to see if it has worked tomorrow.








Full list of today's sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Great Northern Diver (Gavia immer)
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)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
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 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)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  32

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Update on Jim.

He's on some tablets, to try and help with his breathing. He's had a problem for a while now, but usually seems worse in the hot weather. Constantly panting, until he gets cooler.
If the tablets don't help, then it's a very complicated and expensive operation, which isn't guaranteed anyway.
Plus he's old like me; but his heart is stronger than mine.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Great Northern Diver


Undoubtedly the star of Caldecotte Lake at the moment, is the Great Northern Diver.




A celebrity like this, certainly brings the twitchers out of the woodwork. I've never seen so many binocular/camera carrying folk in a morning. I suppose once the novelty wears off, they'll all disappear back whence they came.

Up in the tree tops, a group of about 30 Siskin briefly dropped in, before making their way further north.

Moving on from the Great Northern Diver, I made my way up to the top end of the north lake. Thankfully the water level hasn't gone down anymore, so I guess we just have to wait for a hefty downpour of rain for a few weeks, to bring the levels back up.

A quick fly by of a Sparrowhawk, before he descended in a hurry into some trees. He must have spotted breakfast.

By the weir, a Kingfisher sat in a bush, and then made his break across the lake.
One day.....


Swimming around with the Gadwall and Wigeon, was a male Shoveler, in fine plumage. A Little Grebe was harassed every time he surfaced, by a Black-headed Gull. I guess the gull thought he had a fish every time he surfaced.
On the steps, a Grey Wagtail was foraging, but was soon chased off by a Robin.


The morning had promise of some finer weather as I made my way round the south lake; shame it didn't happen though.

The new wader scrape, thanks to the water loss, still holds some great promise; although it's mostly attracted Canada Geese and Black-headed Gulls at the moment.
One jewel amongst them all, was a very distant Water Rail.




The lower water level has forced him to come out into the open a bit, and away from the shelter of the reeds.


Back at the car park, a quick check on the feeders, found this.



 So much for the chilli powder, that is supposed to deter these little buggers. He was positively revelling in it.


Hoping for a brief bit of sun, I made my way round to where the celebrity was, but the promise of sun soon turned to hefty shower.


I did bump into Trevor though, of Three CountiesHerald.










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)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)
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)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Water Rail [sp] (Rallus aquaticus)
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)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
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 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)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Eurasian Siskin (Carduelis spinus)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  39


Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Where has all the water gone?

A bit of a shock this morning to see the water level dropped at the lake, by at least two feet.




I walked the north lake first, after topping up the feeders. The squirrel continues to wreak havoc on some feeders, unfortunately.
Under the road bridge, a Grey Wagtail was foraging in the new lakeside muddy shallows.

A small group of Siskins were a good sight to see, but the main concern this morning, was the big drop in water levels overnight. A lot of people stopped to ask me if I knew the reason why.

I decided I'd ring the Parks Trust at 9 a.m.




Up at the weir, the water was gushing quite a bit, and the level of the river beyond the weir, was very low.
I decided maybe Anglian Water had opened the sluice gate, to draw some water from the lake, to the river. It seemed a reasonable explanation to me, but I decided I'd still ring the Parks Trust anyway.
Wouldn't want Caldecotte Lake, to become Caldecotte Puddle in a few days.

On round the south lake, and my Crows were happily escorting me on my way.

At the far end, the low level of water had created something I've always felt this lake had lacked. And in the perfect place too.



 A Wader scrape.


Filled with mainly Black-headed Gulls at the moment, but I'm sure something of a permanent nature would certainly bring in plenty of birds.

I rang the Parks Trust.

"Morning, Parks Trust."
"Morning, I'm at Caldecotte Lake, and.........."
"Yes, the water level is low. We've had a few calls."
"Do you know why?"
"No, but we are looking into it."


I suggested they try Anglian Water, since it seemed the water was being drawn from the lake, into the river.
I was thanked for my call; end of conversation.

This Heron seemed rather bemused by the whole thing, and was content to observe from a high vantage point, in the trees.




Back at the car park, a quick check on the feeders;



 very busy, and then home.


I do hope they turn the tap off soon. Caldecotte Puddle doesn't sound quite right.










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)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)
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)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
British Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major anglicus)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
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)
Redwing [sp] (Turdus iliacus)
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)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Eurasian Siskin (Carduelis spinus)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  38

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

An update on the situation. 


After a text from a local birder at about 3:30 p.m. that there was a Great Northern Diver spotted at the north lake, I made my way there in search of it. Found it, but the light was pretty dire by the time I got there.




I also got a phone call from Dawn, at the Parks Trust, to let me know the reason for the low water level.
It seems the computerised sluice system malfunctioned, and kept the gate open overnight. It's been fixed now, but the water levels will take some time to get back to normal.


Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Tuesday 15th November 2011


The morning started grey and cloudy, but got better as I left.

I checked the feeders, topped them up, and made my way round the south lake first. I fancied a change.

The Crows soon recognised me, and began following me to the bottom end of the south lake.




A large number of Cormorants left the roost, and headed off towards the west, while Jackdaws were flying east. The sky was busy.

At the far end, the Little Grebes were being their usual elusive selves, whilst the Coots, were their usual belligerent selves.

Making my way towards the rowing club, I could see a Kingfisher in the distance, sitting by the side of the lake.




As I filmed it, from a fair distance, he suddenly shot into the water; and just as quickly, back out. I couldn't tell at the time, but he had caught a fish.
If you watch the video carefully, you can make out the fish wriggling in his beak.
He certainly lived up to his name.

A brief stop at the feeders, to see what was about, and then on round the north lake.




Plenty of Black-headed Gulls, Tufted Duck and Coots. As I got near the top end of the lake, I disturbed a Heron, with a large fish in his dagger like bill.



 Unfortunately the only picture was of him disappearing across the lake.


At the weir, a Grey Wagtail, and a few Wigeon and Gadwall.

By the time I was back at the car park, the sun was beginning to shine through the cloud.




~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~







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)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)
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)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Grey Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla cinerea)
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)
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)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
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  39

Monday, 14 November 2011

Feeders at the lake

I received an e-mail yesterday from Dawn, at the Parks Trust.

It seems that some people are still complaining about the rats; one person even complained to the Milton Keynes pest control team.

This morning I made a quick visit, and took all the feeders down near the footbridge, and put them in the new area.



I hope these people are happy now.


Sunday, 13 November 2011

Sunny Sunday

It looked like it was going to be a misty morning, but the sun soon shone through that; and there were blue skies.

Boats, joggers and cyclists too.

The footbridge attracted over half a dozen reed Buntings, and Chaffinch, along with the regular tits and Goldfinches on the feeders.
A party of Long Tailed Tits dropped in for a while too.




The new feeding area is also attracting plenty of birds; Goldfinch, Greenfinch, and tits.


The north lake had the usual, and a Kingfisher by the weir.




An electric blue flash was all I could capture, as he disappeared in some bushes behind a Heron.


Plenty of Tufted Duck and Wigeon at the far end too, away from the boats.

As I made my way round the south lake, a single Greylag Goose amongst a group of Canada Geese, was giving me the once over, as I passed.




At the far end, another Kingfisher, and some Little Grebe, along with the Coots and Gadwall.

And of course, the ever present Crows.



An enjoyable morning in the sun.










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)
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)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
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)
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 Jay (Garrulus glandarius rufitergum)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  41