Sunday, 28 December 2008

Sunday 28th. December 2008

Couldn't help but notice this morning , every time I looked at the feeders for that Winter rarity , in my dreams , a Dunnock , usually a secretive , retiring bird , was sat watching how the others were doing it . He occassionally hopped down to do a bit of clearing up under the feeders , but then returned to his 'watching perch' again .
Eventually , when the Finches retired to digest their meals , he made several abortive attempts to perch on the feeder . In the end , he managed to hang on , and was treated to a top class meal , rather than relying on scraps from the top table .
Needless to say , no Winter rarities turned up .
After lunch I set off for a look around Hayes Farm , not so much a working farm these days , it hosts Boot Sales throughout the year , and livery for many horses . It also has a small Trout fishery tucked away in the middle , and even on this cold afternoon , three intrepid anglers were trying their luck . I was cold enough walking around , never mind standing still in that biting wind , that takes dedication . On the said fishery there were Mallard , Coot , Moorhen , pure white Geese , a pair of Little Grebe and three strange looking ducks , white ground colour with black markings and yellow bills . Positively not male Smew or Goldeneye , but they never came close enough for a photograph . I shall have to pop back there again soon .
Walking around the fields , I came across another eight Rose Ringed Parakeets in an Oak tree , getting the last of the sun's rays . It is almost impossible to go out without seeing/hearing these birds anywhere around this area .
Large numbers of Woodpigeon were feeding on the ground in the horse paddocks , and a flock of about 50+ mixed Linnets and Goldfinches were constantly feeding and then retiring en mass to a tree behind some houses , before swooping down to feed again .
A small flock of eight Redwings flew over calling , but the flew on over the wood and disappeared from view .
Headed home by way of Keston Ponds to see if the Ringed Teal - thanks again Ken - was still about . There was no sign of it on the middle pond , where it was yesterday , but there was another strange looking duck . It will probably turn out to be some sort of Mallard hybrid as it was closely attended by a drake Mallard , but I haven't seen one like it before . I had a look at the lower pond , and found the Teal there , where it seems to have tagged on with the Mandarins .


Warren Baker said...

Has someone got a duck collection nearby Greenie ? That pond seems to be attracting some different wildfowl.

Ken said...

Hi Greenie.
Can you give me any more clues about these 3 ducks you saw,ie was they divers of dabblers, and what sort of size were they? Was the head completely white, was the bill all yellow? You have a great collection of wildfowl where you go, lucky you..P.S. Can't help you with the other duck

Ken said...

Hi Greenie. You can always email me at with any details. Ken