Luke and I were down at Linacre at first light this morning to carry out this month's BTO WeBS walk. We were on site by 7.30am, and managed an hour in the dry, before the heavens opened and it poured down! Luckily, we were going around the top reservoir by then, so we didn't get too wet.
The good news is that the immature Shag was still present. I'd last seen it on the 1st, and it hadn't been seen since, but today it was back on its favourite perch on the bottom reservoir, before flying up to the middle reservoir for a spot of fishing. 2 Cormorants, an adult and a juvenile, were also seen.
October is usually the best month for ducks at Linacre, and the Mandarins in particular, put on a good show today, with an impressive 75 seen. This is the highest count of the year. 62 Mallards were also counted, along with 42 Tufted Ducks, 4 Coots, 15 Moorhens, including 6 birds in juvenile plumage, 3 Grey Wagtails, 1 Grey Heron (heard), 9 Black-headed Gulls, 5 Lesser Black-backed Gulls (flew over), 1 Great-crested Grebe and 3 Little Grebes.
Birds seen or heard in the surrounding woods included: Redwing (100+ flying over), Fieldfare (2 - the first of the winter), Great-spotted Woodpecker, Woodpigeon, Wren (singing), Robin (singing), and a nice flock of mixed tits including Long-tailed and Blue Tits, along with Goldcrest.