Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Friday Lake on a Wednesday

Aah the benefits of doing a 4 day week!  Today was that day that used to belong to the man, now it's mine.  Now if something can be done about the other 4 days I will be a pig in the proverbial. Did I make the most of it? Did I cocoa!  Did it matter?  Probably not.

First up finding Friday Lake.  I once got lost here on a really gloomy day when I wasn't too familiar with the place, went around the 70 Acre lake about 3 times before I managed to find the right path back to the station. I still don't know what all the lakes are called so I asked the first birder I came across.  He said I was looking at Bowyers. OK, so that's why there were no Smew.  He hadn't seen them on Friday either.  OK!

I did. Two snorting beauties.  A few miles off granted, and doing what most ducks do all day: bugger all.

Next up Bittern.  I never for a minute thought I wouldn't see one, but then I didn't think it would such a piss poor view as it passed through the field of view of my bins never to be seen again in a patch of reed no bigger than we have at the Shoulder of Mutton. 

With Water Rail and Kingfisher also added to the pointless year list, I went looking for Goosander on Holyfield, not that I need them, I just like them. Instead of going straight to the weir hide I made for the Landgridge scrape, which is no more a scrape than the Serpentine now.  Used to be good when they first finished it, with LRP and Wood Sand, now all the islands are overgrown and fit only for ducks.  Did pick up a calling RL Partridge from somewhere in the sailing club,and a Buzzard in a tree.  Ching, ching!

Holyfield was devoid of any Goosander though I did try and ID 2 Shelduck as such (Factor would be proud).  Got a very smart drake flying towards the lake later as I walked back for some more Bittern fun. So as the sun sets slowly in the south-west-ish, I am on the side of 70 Acres hoping the bloody bird will fly around a bit while its still light. Natch it didn't. Plenty of other stuff to pass the time. Sprawk, Kestrel and a male Peregrine, 2 singing Cetti's and some "sharming" rails, while somewhere behind me the trilling of Waxwing presumably going roostward.

Not a bad little day, and the sun shone.  Strange there were no singing Song Thrush, or diving Goldeneye, in fact it's a weird place altogether.  Should be great for birds, but bar the ducks, cormorants, gulls and geese sod all about.


  1. "in fact it's a weird place altogether. Should be great for birds, but bar the ducks, cormorants, gulls and geese sod all about".

    Now you know how I feel Nick after almost every visit.
    And it's the place I call my patch!
    Every visit is more in hope than expectation.

  2. Same here, better in winter and I hope to back before the Nightingales return, and let's hope for a Savi's or something nice grunting in the reeds