13 Aug 14

Priorslee Lake: 5:01am – 6:30am // 7:25am – 8:28am

11.5°C.> 14.5°C  mainly broken cloud with a few clearer spells. Moderate W wind. Good visibility.

Best this morning was a tight party of >50 Goosander glimpsed as they disappeared to the E of the lake and hidden from my view by trees.

(84th visit of the year)

Other notes
Geese now flying in force with multiple Canada Geese parties and a single large Greylag Goose group.
2 Tufted Duck arrived while I was at The Flash.
Rather few Black-headed Gulls arrived early – just 66: but unusually a party of 115 was counted passing high E to the N. Much later 64 (more?) arrived from the E.
A single Swift this morning: rather late for this species.
c.25 House Martins over to the W were perhaps just passing as none seen around the estate.
Just 1 Song Thrush heard briefly in song today.
4 Reed Warblers at least still present: will probably leave in the nest few days.
Poor number of corvids on passage this morning and these were mainly on unusual flight-lines.
1 large bat only
No moths anywhere this morning.

2 + 2 (1 brood) Great Crested Grebes
2 or 3 Grey Heron
2 Swans
62 Greylag Geese (all 62 outbound)
113 Canada Geese (111 outbound; 2 inbound)
16 (?) Mallard
>50 Goosander
2 (1) Tufted Ducks
2 Moorhens
39 + 12 (? broods) Coots
c.245 Black-headed Gulls
10 large gulls
1 Swift
c.25 House Martins
1 (1) Song Thrush
4 (0) Reed Warblers
4 (0) Blackcaps
8 (2) Chiffchaffs
Corvid roost dispersal: 65 Jackdaws and just 14 Rooks.

This month has seen a so-called “super moon” due to its closeness to the earth. The size is always most evident when the moon is near the horizon, as it was when full on 10 August. Already the waning moon is too high in the sky at dawn for the size to be especially apparent. But is still a super sight.

Here are a party of Goosander seen briefly flying near the lake shortly after dawn.

Lurking in the vegetation and reluctant to show is this Reed Warbler. Difficult to age on this view but rather dull iris and mainly dark bill with hint of pink at base of lower mandible suggest a juvenile.

Not so bright at the moment: this male Bullfinch has probably moulted in to fresh plumage but as with all finches the new feathers have pale fringes and until these wear off late in winter the full breeding splendour is not revealed.

(Ed Wilson)


Priorslee Flash: 6:40am – 7:15am

(72nd visit of the year)

Single Cormorant over.
Most of the geese now flying and away feeding: the lone gosling not yet fledged and in with small remnant group.
Single Mallard duckling from a new very recent brood.
Juvenile Coots largely inseparable from adults now.
7 House Martins in loose group over included juveniles: seemed to be moving through, but rather too low for migrants?
Chiffchaffs the only warblers present here.

2 + 1 Great Crested Grebes
1 Cormorant over
1 Grey Heron
2 Swans
19 + 1 Canada Geese
The all-white feral goose
30 (?) + 1 (1 brood) Mallard
19 (16?) Tufted Ducks
1 + 1 (1 brood) Moorhens
19 Coots
1 Black-headed Gull
5 Lesser Black-backed Gulls over
7 House Martins
2 (1) Chiffchaffs

(Ed Wilson)