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, 27 July 2012

Stupidity and matches don't mix

Another warm sunny day; but just a quick visit, as I was expecting a parcel.

As I topped up the feeders, the Mallard with the ducklings, and the piebald one, gave me a treat, as they came over for some food. I couldn't resist them, and gave them a couple of handfuls for their bravery.

Walking around just the north lake, and more signs of summer vandalism.




Rubbish, and the remains of five barbecues. These mindless morons shouldn't be allowed matches; or not until they grasp the fact that a hot barbecue on a wooden picnic table, will burn.




Spoils it not only for themselves, but for others too.



The Common Terns have calmed down a bit now, after the loss of their chick.
They were still flying around, but not dive bombing me this morning.

And up by the weir, a Grey Heron stood on the railings.




I think he must have been asleep, because he didn't move as I took his picture, and some video.



Finally, back over the road bridge, and home; in time for my parcel.









Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
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 Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
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)

Total species  21


Thursday, 26 July 2012

Dive bombed by the Common Terns


Another sunny day.


After topping up the feeders, a quick look over at Cormorant island found a Little Egret up in the tree. A few Common Terns were flying around with some Black-headed Gulls, and a few Coots were just waking up over on the island.

Under the road bridge, and round the north lake.

The Oystercatcher was feeding over by the pub, along with a few Starlings, and more Black-headed Gulls were in front of the pub.

I finally reached the area opposite the boat where the Common Terns had nested, and began to get dive bombed by a pair of very distressed Common Terns. No sign of the chick. Had the chick recently been taken, and the Terns thought I was the culprit?
No idea, but they were intent on making their feelings shown. At times they were about eight feet above my head, calling noisily. Sad to see them so distressed.

Round past the pub, the Oystercatcher was still running around, and a few Greylag Geese were grazing. At the waters edge, the five grown up cygnets were feeding with dad.

Onto the south lake, and the mindless idiots have struck again.
This time a burned out motorbike across the footpath.

Three juvenile Great Crested Grebes were being fed by their parents. The success rate of their dives for fish, was 100%.

No sign of the Mute Swans with the lone cygnet this morning, but as I made my way back to the car park, the four from the island were feeding just off the edge of the island with mum.








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








Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
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)
Eurasian Hobby [sp] (Falco subbuteo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
British Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major anglicus)
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)
Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
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)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)

Total species  36


Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Sunshine, rubbish and a couple of losses



A sad fact of life is, when the sun shines, dirty buggers leave their rubbish in the countryside for someone else to pick up.


The sun shone this morning, and a quick walk round the lake revealed the usual birds, with plenty of calling/singing Reed Warblers, in the reeds by the car park.
A Song Thrush was out looking for an early worm, as I made my way under the road bridge, and a couple of Herons were hoping for fish, along the edge of the lake.

Up at the boat, with the Common Terns, it seems as though a chick has been lost already. I could only see one this morning.


By the pub, a large group of Black-headed Gulls, a couple of Cormorants, and one of the Oystercatchers.
Walking round the edge, I got my usual 'hissing' greeting from one of the Greylags.


The Crows were along the footpath of the south lake, and the warm sun had stirred the butterflies, who were fluttering around in the long grass.

The sound of more Reed Warblers coming from the reeds; one even brave enough to sit out in the open, calling. Some video, but when I reached for the camera, he decided to hide a bit.





At the far end of the lake, the Mute Swans that had struggled to raise a family of two, are now sadly down to one cygnet.

As I got past the offices, sitting on their nest was a cheeky Moorhen. I think he'll soon move when they come home.


A Sparrowhawk flew overhead, being pursued by a group of Swifts, and by the rowing club, two Herons enjoying the sun.


Finally, back at the car park, and the Reed Warblers were still warbling.








Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
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)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
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)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  38


Sunday, 22 July 2012

Common Terns have two chicks

Another sunny day. It seems summer has finally arrived.


First bird this morning was a juvenile Green Woodpecker, strutting around the car park. A very quick bit of video, before he decided to take off. Unfortunately the camera was in the boot, so no pictures.


As the sun came up, there was some beautiful light.




This doesn't really do justice to the lovely light first thing.



Plenty of birds singing in the morning, and even a pair of Great Crested Grebes renewing their love, with some head waggling.






Up at the boat, at the top end of the north lake, the stars for today.





Two Common Tern chicks. The two parents were busily protecting them, while they enjoyed some morning sun. I hope these little ones make it. I suspect it's going to be tough though, as one of the adults is already chasing off any Lesser Black-backed Gulls that stray too close.



On to the south lake, and Reed Warbler was singing his little song, out in the open.




Difficult to get a picture with some detail though, as I was shooting into the sun.



The young cygnets were all out with their respective parents, along with the boats, and the naughty fishermen that don't know where they can fish; or claim to not understand when you tell them.


Finally back at Cormorant island, a Little Egret was sunning himself.





Another enjoyable visit.









Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Eurasian Hobby [sp] (Falco subbuteo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Feral Pigeon (Columba livia 'feral')
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
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)
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  38


Saturday, 21 July 2012

Yellow Wagtail, Little Egret, cygnets and ducklings.


What a morning; and the sun shone.


I checked Cormorant island, after topping up the bird feeders, and found a Little Egret preening in one of the trees.
A light mist hung over the water, as above a couple of Cormorants flew in, and some Common Terns were circling overhead.
On the island the Oystercatchers were very vocal. Eventually I got a glimpse of three. Two were running side by side, as though about to mate, but they seemed to be chasing the third. Confused. Was this two males after a female, or a pair chasing off another male?
As I left them to it, to make my way round the north lake, a couple of Green Woodpeckers were searching for food in the grass, and on a tree.


Black-headed Gulls were over by the pub, along with Starlings, Canada, and Greylag Geese; and more Common Terns circling overhead with Swifts. Blackcap calling from the bushes, and Reed Warblers calling from the lake edge.


As I got up by the island, I saw the group of five grown up cygnets.




And have they grown! As big as the adult now.



A number of Black-headed Gulls were sat on the dam, preening and enjoying the morning sun, and a Grey Heron flew overhead.




They certainly have a large wingspan.



The Common Tern was still sat on the boat, along with a couple of Mallards, but there was no sign of the Sedge Warbler this morning.


Past the pub, and on towards the south lake.

A large group of mixed geese were spread across the footpath.



Greylag Geese



Some decided to head towards the water, and the rest moved nearer the road.
No sign of the Crows this morning though. Feeding elsewhere probably.

As I reached the far end of the lake, I spotted the adult Mute Swans with their two cygnets, that had nested by the offices.




They were looking healthy and content, as they fed close to the edge.


I'd received an e-mail last night, from a couple that live overlooking the lake, confirming that there were now four cygnets left from the five that were born on Cormorant island, and there was another pair of swans that had had one cygnet, on the pools by the business park.
My first thought when I read it, was one of the two born in the reeds, by the offices, had died. Never having walked round the pools before, I decided to go and have a look this morning.
Eventually I found them.





Doesn't that cygnet ooze 'cuteness'?


Eventually I left them, and carried on back to the lake.


As I got round by the houses, I was surprised to see a Yellow Wagtail, along with a few Pied Wagtails.




And finally there were the cygnets from Cormorant island.




Sadly, now down to four, but looking a bit bigger than they did a few days ago.
Hopefully these will all survive now.


The Little Egret was still over on the island; or maybe it was another one, and a pair of Tufted Duck were diving for food in the sun.



Definitely a 'cygnet' day today.










Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
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)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
British Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava flavissima)
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)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
British Jay (Garrulus glandarius rufitergum)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  39


Friday, 20 July 2012

Quick visit


Dull, again; but it doesn't stop the mozzy's from bighting.


A quick look over at Cormorant island before I set off round the north lake, and it seems one of the cygnets has gone missing. I could only count four. Maybe the other was with his dad?


As I began to go under the road bridge, a couple of Reed Warblers caught my attention, as they noisily made their way through the reeds. I think they were probably young ones.

The Common Tern still sits on her nest; today in the company of three Mallards.

Up towards the pub, and a juvenile Green Woodpecker caught my eye as he probed the grass, and went from tree to tree in search of food.




A few geese were grazing as I walked down towards the pub, and a group of Greylag's were along the edge of the path. Amongst them, a Cormorant.





As I made my way closer, he seemed a little wary at first, and then as the geese began to move away, he decided his cover had been blown.






Over the road bridge, and back to the car park.




Quick visit this morning. Doctors later; it's called a cardiac clinic, where I get the results of the blood test, and a lecture about my lifestyle.









Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
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 Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
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)

Total species  27


Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Common Pochard


Dull, and spitting with rain for a change today.

A rushed post this morning; lots to do.

Down by the bird feeders, a female Mallard was showing off her new brood; amongst them a lovely marked duckling.
On the way to the road bridge, the five cygnets and mum, from Cormorant island, were busily feeding.

Towards the dam. the Canada Geese were grazing, a bit further from the edge than normal, and the Common Tern was still sitting tight on the boat.


A Marbled White was clinging onto some grass, and blowing around in the wind.




Hoping for some sun I would imagine.



By the pub, the two Oystercatchers were feeding, a group of Greylag Geese were stretched across the footpath, and Swifts were flying overhead.


The Crows were waiting on the south lake, for my apple core, but very little else until I got to the far end.
There, with a group of Mallards, was a Pochard.




A little surprised to see one this time of the year; although after checking my lists for the lake, I found I'd seen one here on 12th July, two years ago.
Still, a reminder that winter isn't too far away I suppose.






The two new born cygnets were safely tucked under mums body, on the nest, whilst the proud dad stood guard.

More Swifts flying overhead as I passed the houses, and then finally back at the car park.







Full list of today's sightings



Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
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)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
British Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major anglicus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
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)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
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)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)


Total species  35



Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Sun on the cygnets


After spending most of yesterday picking up my new car with Trevor, and driving up and down the motorway in the rain, it was good to get round the lake in some sunshine this morning.


A few juveniles were around by the footbridge, enjoying the early rays.




Blue Tit



And as I made my way towards the road bridge, the swans from Cormorant island were out with their five cygnets.
Over by the pub, the two Oystercatchers were busily searching for some breakfast, and a few Common Terns were flying around, and swooping down to the water.

The group of Canada Geese were grazing in their usual spot, on the way towards the dam, and overhead a large number of Swifts flying above the tree tops.

The Common Tern was still sat on her eggs; or maybe a chick or two?
Hopefully soon.


On to the south lake, and a few butterflies flying amongst the wildflowers down by the footbridge, over the river.




Marbled White.



Along the edge of the river, a female Mallard was with her lone duckling.





As I reached the palette 'hide', the female Mute Swan was swimming with her two cygnets.




Lovely to see them enjoying the sun, after all this heavy rain.
The real stars of the lake, for me, at the moment.

As I made my way towards the rowing club, a Blackbird was singing in a tree, being warmed by the sun.


Finally, opposite Cormorant island, a couple of House Martins flying overhead, and sat on the edge of the island, a pair of Tufted Duck.










Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
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)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes indigenus)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Mistle Thrush [sp] (Turdus viscivorus)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
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)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  34


Sunday, 15 July 2012

The cygnets are born.

A beautiful sunny morning, for a change.

I haven't visited here for a couple of days, so the feeders needed some attention.
After filling them, I had a quick look over at Cormorant island, before setting off round the north lake.
Out in the distance, one of the Mute Swans was swimming with her five cygnets.




I breathed a sigh of relief, because a couple of days earlier, after a very quick visit, I'd spotted a lone cygnet swimming around, very early in the morning. I wondered if it would survive on its own, so early. I watched it for a while, and it seemed to be swimming towards the island, eventually. I hoped it would quickly get back to the safety of its nest.


At the footbridge, by the car park, an unusual sight this morning.




A Treecreeper, investigating the wooden structure for insects.


The Oystercatcher flew in by the pub, and joined a few geese there. Lots of Starlings too, and quite a build up of Black-headed Gulls now; including some juveniles.

As I passed the island, that had the nesting Kingfishers, until they got flooded out, a Common Sandpiper flew along the bank.

Further round the lake, a group of Canada Geese were grazing close to the edge, and amongst them, one poor soul with a foot missing.

Up at the boat, the Common Tern still sits on her eggs, and this morning she seemed a little upset as four Mallards began preening on the boat. I doubt they would be cause for anything untoward, but she obviously was not happy with their close proximity.

As I made my way past the pub, a Greylag Goose gave me a quick warning to keep moving.




She had a couple of young ones close by, and was being very protective.



A big group of mixed geese were on the footpath as I began my way down the south lake. They slowly moved; some towards the safety of the water, the rest went further along the grass.

The pair of Great Crested grebes with their three young ones were happily enjoying the sun, as they drifted on the water, and in the long grass and wild flowers, it was good to see plenty of butterflies.
All Meadow Browns, but still good to see them on the wing.

Finally at the far end of the lake, I spotted a pair of Mute Swans with a couple of cygnets.




Was this the pair that had a second attempt at nesting, after the first nest was vandalised?



I checked the male through the binoculars. If it was the same pair, he would have an orange band with a number, on his left leg.
He did.
It was great to see this pair with two healthy looking cygnets, after their earlier setback.
I watched them for ages, and felt so pleased that they had finally been successful.




A very good pair of parents; last year they successfully raised some young cygnets, and this year they had done it again, despite human intervention.


I finally made my way back towards the car park.


As I passed the town houses, a small group of Swifts were flying overhead, and with them four House Martins. Only four. Previous years have seen a big number of these birds at this time of the year; sadly, not this year.


The boats were starting to come out on the water by now, and a few joggers jogging; but I'd had a great morning.









Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
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 Kestrel [sp] (Falco tinnunculus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Treecreeper (Certhia familiaris britannica)
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 Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  35


Wednesday, 11 July 2012

New cygnets


The squirrel has been at one of the feeders again. I found a nut feeder at the waters edge, but luckily enough he hadn't managed to get the tin can top off this time.


Before walking the north lake, I usually have a quick look on Cormorant island, to see what's there. This morning, the pair of Mute Swans that have nested on the island, have five young cygnets. Both adults were having an early morning swim with their new babies. Lovely to see a success like this; the first nest was washed away when the water level rose back in May. Let's hope they all make it now.


The Oystercatcher flew over the road bridge, and settled by the pub, to search for some food, along with a large group of grazing geese. And the Black-headed Gulls were sitting on the boat jetty, as a couple of Common Terns were flying around over the lake.


At the top end, more Black-headed Gulls on the dam, and a large number of Swifts flying overhead.


On the boat, the Common Tern was joined by her partner, but unfortunately she didn't move. Would have been nice to see how many eggs she had.


As I made my way past the pub, a couple of Pied Wagtails watched me intently as I passed.




As I made my way under the road bridge to walk the south lake, the sun came out. What a lovely and unusual sight that was.



At the far end a pair of Great Crested Grebes were busily fishing for breakfast.
One had managed to catch a very large Crayfish,




and I watched as he seemed to struggle with it for some time.




Undeterred by its size, he persevered, biting at it, and shaking it,




until it seemed to break in half. 
Finally he finished it off,




and it seemed his mate had the other half.



The Mute Swan up by the offices is still sitting on her nest, and this time the male was in close attendance. I watched for a while, but no movement from the nest. Maybe the new cygnets were under mum, or close to hatching.


No sign of any ducklings this morning, and as I got level with Cormorant island once more, a quick look through the binoculars found the little cygnets settling down on the nest with mum. Dad was busily preening further along.


And the sun still shone.








Full list of today's sightings


Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
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)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
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)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  36