Saturday 2 March 2024

Lots of corvids

An overnight frost resulting in ice on the shallow pools. Followed by a showery day with a light NE breeze.

Middleton Nature Reserve (MD)
Mute Swan 2 adult on the main pond chasing the remaining 4 immature birds around. Unfortunately 1 immature was also dead on the peninsula. Foxes had been eating it but would not have killed it.
Little Grebe 2 on the main pond.
Goosander 2 a male and a female on the no swimming pond (historically, Goosander have been very scarce here, but there has been a significant increase in recent years, no doubt related to the developing fish stocks - for years there were no fish in these ponds)
This is the female

Lots of corvid activity today, much of it to do with defining territories.
Raven 1 at least - individual bird seen on three occasions but possibly all the same mobile bird.
3 Carrion Crows managed to see off this Raven

Carrion Crow 9
No Jackdaw despite large numbers roosting overnight 
Magpie 28 including this bickering group(s) of 18
Reed Bunting 1 male
Cetti's Warbler 2 singing males (main and "no swimming" ponds)
Jack Snipe 1 - accidentally flushed from the west bank of the main pond.
Jack Snipe

South shore (MD)
Pale-bellied Brent goose 22 visible on Red Nab, but probably others obscured by the far rocks.
Wigeon 220
Shelduck 6
Eider 1 female
Shag 1 adult on the wooden jetty

This Black-Headed gull has found a fish too large for it to easily swallow

This clip shows it being chased by two other Black-Headed gulls (note the Eider on the sea at one point). But when a young Common gull joins in with the chase the BHG realises that it is hopeless and drops the fish.

The Common Gull makes off with the fish, the BHGs chase a while, then give up
The Common Gull then quickly headed out of the area to avoid the larger gulls pinching his prize.

Rock Pipit 3 - 2 and 1 along the sea wall

Imperial Rd (MD)
Again, just a quick check in passing.
Buzzard 1 flew of to SE
Greylag goose 17
Teal 4
Roe Deer 1 buck. As well as the obvious masculine features (antlers etc) you can tell he's a male as he doesn't have the white rump tuft sported by the females at this time of year.

Just out of the recording area - horse paddock behind Middleton Parish Hall

Glossy Ibis still feeding