Saturday, 29 November 2014

Saturday 29th. November 2014

Having read of the good array of species found by Warren / Pittswood Birds on his visit to Bough Beech , I made the journey yesterday morning , hoping that the grey skies would clear mid morning . Needless to say , it took till midday for the first signs of clearing . When I pulled up on the causeway in the gloom with the place to myself , I looked first at the North Lake and found a single Moorhen . I thought that Warren's Common Buzzard was around , but it turned out to be someone in the woods behind , shouting at the top of his voice to control his dog , that must have driven any bird in the vicinity to the other end of the main reservoir . Whilst scanning it , a male Goosander came into
view , and eventually came closer , only to be scared off by the odd passing vehicle . It was joined a
bit later by a redhead , female / juvenile , but never came into the frame together , until a tractor and
trailer thundered by , when the pair turned and headed off towards the dam . As they headed off , another visitor appeared from behind the Willows , in the channel down from the Oast house , a Great
White Egret , and at the same time a Fieldfare called and flew off , the only winter Thrush seen or heard during the visit . Another look over the North Lake found two Common Snipe , well tucked
into the bankside vegetation , and a Little Egret which flew in and perched on the scaffold pole on the culvert . A Kingfisher also briefly alighted later on this pole and was also seen in the stream that enters into the North Lake and also flying parallel to the causeway on the main reservoir . The male Goosander , or another , was seen in flight a couple of times , also a pair of Jays looking for a meal
amongst the vegetation on the concrete apron of the reservoir . On another scan , the male Goosander
was found on the left point with Wigeon , Tufted Duck , Gadwall and Shoveler and other of the more common waterfowl , and it looked like it was siesta time . With things quieting down , I decided to move on to the small reserve with feeders in the woods in the hope of finding some Siskins . On arrival , John , one of the 'main men' of the reserve , was already parked up , and with no sign of him at the hide , sure enough , I found him at the feeders with the same idea , but he had been on site for some time and although hearing Siskin , none had come to the feeders , but plenty of other species were . During my time there , the most common visitors were the Marsh Tits , impossible to be sure
of total number , but good to see . Blue , Coal and Great Tits were also present , along with Nuthatch
and Great Spotted Woodpecker , but the latter stayed high in the surrounding trees . Surprisingly , I didn't see a single Finch on the feeders , overhead a Common Buzzard passed calling , and a
Kingfisher called as it flew through . Whilst we were watching , we were being watched too .
Attracted by any spilt seeds , Bank Voles could be heard rustling amongst the fallen leaves , and
occasionally rushing out to collect a tasty morsel , before scampering back into cover . Another unanswered question regarding Marsh Tits , how many seeds can they carry at once , failed to get a
definitive answer too .


Warren Baker said...

You found one more snipe than me Greenie :-) Plus you saw the female Goosander, just males were there on Thursday. No Marsh Tits when I went, no seed in the feeders!!

NatureStop said...

Greetings from Dubai! Really enjoyed going through your blog. Have a great week ahead! Will be back soon...