Friday, 20 March 2015

Birding eclipsed

Long overdue but something a bit more varied to write about than of late.

Both the 2 White-fronted Geese and Pink-footed Goose were in the field next to Toft Cottage Farm along the Southam Road from Dunchurch. They seem to like this field in the morning recently before moving closer to Draycote Water later in the day but the Greylag flock is dwindling with only 40 birds present today.

On the reservoir itself then the Black-necked Grebe was off farborough bank while overnight a good number of duck arrived and were resting out in the centre with 50 Teal, 30 Wigeon, 3 Shoveler plus male and female Pintail before the first fishing boats of the morning flushed them off. Still 20+ Goldeneye and a single Pochard male. No sign of any Little Egrets as we peered through the gloom though 3 were present yesterday near the valve tower but with high water levels they are easily spooked by the first walkers or runners of the day.  Other sightings included Chiffchaff, 40 Fieldfare and 30 Meadow Pipit

Having taken an hour to reach the spit we changed our attention away from the birds to the eclipse and with a bit of a heath robinson idea from Dave we used our scopes and paper to follow its progression over the next hour.

After the eclipse we moved on to Napton on the Hill where there were still a few Redwing, 5 Raven, 7 Buzzard, Great-spotted Woodpecker and a Coal Tit before ending up at Napton Reservoir which was inundated with Common Gull with at least 700 present along with 7 Teal, Raven and Green Woodpecker. With the temperature rising we were lucky enough to see Brimstone butterflies at Napton on the Hill, Broadwell, Dunchurch and on my estate in Rugby.