Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve - After the storm

Awoke to a surprisingly dry morning so headed off down to the park first thing. It was still quite windy and very mild. The ground is saturated so if you are paying a visit make sure you have waterproof footwear and avoid trying out your brand new trainers down here tomorrow unless you really don't like them!

Met up with DK again and we went down to check out the Little Egret roost but could only find 3, a bit disappointing after the 12 we had yesterday morning.

Once again we failed to find the Shag which was first spotted on Sunday morning but we met up with TP who said he had seen the bird the previous day in the north east corner of the main lake. I think everybody else who came down yesterday failed to find it myself and DK included.

We found half a dozen Shoveler on Fingers including 2 males. There were also at least 2 Little Grebes a and a single male Gadwall. Most of the ducks now seem to be on the main lake. We had a small party of Wigeon over north east early on.

On the main lake there were 13 Pochards, 28 Tufted Ducks and 20 Gadwalls. There were also 2 more Little Grebes.

Those were the highlights in the park but I popped down to Meadow Lane afterwards and located a nice mixed flock of Tits, Chiffchaffs and this Goldcrest:

It was a male as I could see some orange/red in the crest in one of the other photographs.

There were at least 2 Chiffchaffs along Meadow Lane and a third along the the cycle track between the STW and Meadow Lane. This last bird looked quite grey initially but it didn't stick around long so I didn't get a chance to look at it closely. All the Chiffy calls I heard today were the normal one.

Earlier we had seen good size flocks of Golden Plovers and Lapwings over 100 Acre so I popped down to the crop fields by the bypass and found ~500 Golden Plovers and ~200 Lapwings. There was a Kestrel over 100 Acre when I made my way back along the cycle track to my car.

There is a guided bird walk, weather permitting, on Sunday 29th December. Meet at the visitor centre at 9am. Weather forecast looks OK at the moment so finger crossed for a nice mornings birding.