Saturday, 12 October 2013

Lonesome WeBS counting

The weather forecast for today was wet and windy, and unfortunately they got it right! No ringing, so instead I headed down to Linacre to carry out the monthly WeBS count. I was on my own this month, presumably because of the weather and holidays for some lucky people, and again, because of the weather, I only spent one and a half hours going around all 3 reservoirs.

The first birds I spotted through the drizzle and wind, were a flock of Carrion Crows in the field by the main entrance. No Pied Wagtails today, though. A flock of approximately 30 Redwings that flew over the bottom car park, were my first of the winter period, and were quite expected, as there have been several thousand arriving in the country this week. (see here). Here's a picture from last February, when the weather was a bit better.


Down on the bottom reservoir the Little Grebes were very active, with 2 juveniles and an adult seen, a Kingfisher flew the length of the water and the first of 40 Tufted Ducks were seen. Mallards and Mandarin Ducks were also in good numbers today, with 67 and 58 respectively seen. The biggest surprise, however, was the flock of 6 Teal that were found on the bottom reservoir. This species isn't recorded every year, so any record is very well received. The Wigeon was also still present on the middle reservoir, along with 1 Grey Heron, 1 Cormorant, 2 Great-crested Grebe, 11 Coot, 1 Canada Goose, 7 Moorhen (5 adults and 2 brown juveniles on the bottom reservoir) and 4 Black-headed Gulls.

The usual woodland birds were about, and the Crossbill flock was heard, but not seen.

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