Tuesday 13 July
Awoke at 8 then discovered it was only 5 o'clock! Anyway, decided to get up and by 6.30 was over at Rutland Water with just bins and small camera to check out the present situation after being away for eight months. Dry and cloudy, not particularly cold but very poor light. As I approached Egleton not just frequent Magpies and Wood Pigeons but the field next to the entrance lane held scores of jackdaws along with very many Greylag and a handful of Egyptian Geese. Also present a good number of Wood Pigeons, many Starlings and a few Carrion Crows. Continuing on the car park Blackbird, Dunnock and House Sparrow were also recorded. Considering I was the only one about not a single bird to be seen in either the car park of feeding station. Mind you, the seed hoppers had not been filled and the vegetation was quite high.
|Greylag Anser anser with Egyptian Goose Alopochen aegyptiacus (left) and Jackdaw Corvus monedula
So on to the Redshank Hide where I soon found many of the Sand Martin breeding colony along with a couple of Coot and a few Mallard. In addition, both a Gadwall and a handful of Black-headed Gulls. The Grebe Hide added both Tufted Duck and a small number of Barn Swallows but no further species from the Osprey Hide.
|Green Sandpiper Tringa ochropus
So to the Sandpiper Hide overlooking Lagoon 4. This was to be the only water with any wading habitat and, inde4ed, in general the water levels were exceedingly high with many other such sites no longer showing. More Mallards and lots of Mute Swans plus Little Egret, very many Black-headed Gulls including well-grown juveniles. Then a small number of Teal plus a couple of Green Sandpipers. The first of three Great Crested Grebes was observed and on the far scrapes Lapwings were also noted in addition to a small number of Great Black-backed Gulls. As I left the hide a small flock of Goldfinch was seen in the bushes to my right.
|Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus
Lagoon 3 from the Shoveler Hide was was exceedingly high with no waders or herons in sight. Lots of Mallard and a few juvenile Shelduck plus a small number of Pochard. There would also appear to be a healthy population of Common Tern. The remaining hides overlooking this lagoon provided nothing new albeit on the way back from the Lapwing Hide I did pick up a Wren as it crossed the path in front of me.
|Common Tern Sterna hirundo resting behind Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus
Back to the main entrance and then over to Mallard Hide overlooking Lagoon 1 from the south. Lots of Black-headed Gulls and Mallards but also a dozen or more Cormorant. Having already seen the Great I now found a couple of Lesser Black-backed Gulls and watching a "clean" bird arrive was able to confirm Common Gull. Also present a small group of Canada Geese.
At least the sky now appearing to lighten and the promise of warmer weather as I made my way round to Lyndon. But first a very short visit to the bridge over the the Manton Bay entrance where I had a Moorhen make a mad dash below me and the Osprey duly resting on a pole above its nesting site.
|Early morning Osprey Pandion haliaetus at rest
Once at the Lyndon Visitors Centre at least the seed hoppers had been filled so they were attracting lots of juvenile Great Tits along with a mix of Blue Tits, Chaffinches and even a moulting, male Reed Bunting. All but just about done as I made my way back to Stamford but, again, a very short stop overlooking the dam wall produced a handful of Rooks on the field just to the back so giving me a final total of 40 species along with a large number of Greylag accompanied be a handful or so of Canada Geese on the field to the left of the drive down to the dam itself. And as I write this blog a Red Kite is making lazy circles in the sky above the back garden!
|Teal Anas crecca
Greylag Goose, Canada Goose, Mute Swan, Egyptian Goose, Shelduck, Gadwall, Mallard, Teal, Pochard, Tufted Duck, Great Crested Grebe, Cormorant, Little Egret, Osprey, Moorhen, Coot, Lapwing, Green Sandpiper, Black-headed Gull, Common Gull, lesser Black-backed Gull, Great Black-backed Gull, Common Tern, Wood Pigeon, Sand Martin, Barn Swallow, Wren, Dunnock, Blackbird, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Magpie, Jackdaw, Rook, Carrion Crow, Starling, House Sparrow, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Reed Bunting.