Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Filling a gaping hole

24th September - some rain this morning made a change and I was, as always, optimistic that it might produce something at the lake.  However, with a strongish breeze from the NW, conditions were obviously not optimal and my vigil produced very little.

Swallows were moving steadily NW into the wind at a rate of about 100 per hour and I saw about 200 during my watch.  House Martins were much less plentiful, only about 40 of these.  Meadow Pipits were passing over in 1s and 2s and probably numbered about 20 birds in total.  There were a few Snipe feeding along the edge of the spit and also into the vegetation, so there could have been more than the 9 I saw, 4 of these were seen to fly in from the south and may have been feeding on Cock Marsh.  5 Shoveler represented a slight increase and a 2nd summer Common Gull was the only gull of interest.

The male Firecrest remains faithful to the hedgerow along the concrete road and was seen again with a Goldcrest, located as always due to being very vocal.

I have been conscious for a while that I still haven't seen Coal Tit for the year.  This is a slightly tricky bird to get around the lake - I usually see it during the Winter when forays are made to the feeders in the cottage gardens, but I had missed out during the first Winter and the small stand of conifers which it liked have recently been cut down.  So I decided to pay a rare visit to the churchyard where there are several big yews and other conifers - I had been a couple of times in the Spring to no avail.  However, today, as soon as I got of the car I could hear Coal Tits calling from the large trees by the entrance to the manor and soon enough, a single bird flew down into the yew by the latch gate fed for a while and then flew back into the grounds of the manor.  Success and another one for the list.

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