9 Sep 14

Priorslee Lake: 5:40am – 7:10am / 8:20am – 9:51am

7.5°C > 13.0°C:  mainly clear but rather hazy with thin high cloud. Calm with low-level mist > light S wind. Moderate / good visibility.

The notable sighting today was an owl sp, seen wavering away over the N-side trees at just about 6:00am. I would expect a Tawny Owl to be flying through the trees and it was certainly not pale-enough for a Barn Owl. Beyond that I am not prepared to speculate. Damn!

Migrants noted were
- 8 Barn Swallows over the lake.
- 5 single Meadow Pipit overhead the lake and another over The Flash.

(100th visit of the year)

Other notes
No outbound geese seen or heard: 21 Canada Geese dropped in on their way back and paddled across to the SW grass without the cob Swan even lifting his wings
The Green Woodpecker is still around and heard calling most mornings – it was heard this morning.
Currently a small early morning movement of Pied Wagtails passing high E: too high to have been roosting in the Ricoh area, as they sometimes do. Today’s count was 9 birds but I have logged as many(!) as 15.
Common Whitethroat seen again.
Another reasonable (by recent standards) corvid passage.
Common Darter and Southern Hawker dragonflies
A Common Marbled Carpet on the roof of the Priorslee Avenue foot-tunnel

2 + 2 Great Crested Grebes
2 Swans
21 Canada Geese
11 (?) Mallard
3 (1) Tufted Duck
3 + 6 (3 broods) Moorhen
80 Coots
85 Black-headed Gulls
15 large gulls; 13 of these over
1 (0) Reed Warblers
1 (0) Common Whitethroat
1 (0) Blackcaps
10 (2) Chiffchaffs
Corvid roost dispersal: 105 Jackdaws and 54 Rooks logged.

This month there is another ‘super moon’: here it is, off-centre, and before it disappeared in to cloud before it got really big.

The lake by super-moonlight!

Can’t have a ‘super moon’ without a ‘super-sun’!

The hazy dawn.

A real autumn look (and feel) this morning.

 Worth lingering over ...

This bird was quite a puzzle. When I first saw it was the prominent supercilium, especially behind the eye, that caught my attention. It eventually called and continually dipped its tail just like a Chiffchaff and that is surely what it is. But there are some unusual features in addition to the prominent supercilium. The bill, especially the lower mandible, looks rather pale pinkish. The primary-projection gives it a long-winged appearance more like the wings of Willow Warbler which is a longer distance migrant. And the eye-ring is also very prominent. But the dark legs and feet (even Chiffchaff sometimes shows pale feet) and the brown-buff flanks seem to rule out anything else.

This view shows more clearly the length of the primaries:perhaps just an effect of the way it is holding its wing down? 

Yet another variation of Common Marbled Carpet

(Ed Wilson)


Priorslee Flash: 7:20am – 8:10am

(85th visit of the year)

Cormorant circled over but declined to drop in.
143 was the count of arriving Greylag Geese this morning.
6 adult and 1 juvenile Canada Geese seem to be birds that never fly away and are usually at the N end with the all-white feral goose. As yesterday 6 additional birds flew in.
House Martin over from time to time again: today’s largest count was 16 birds.
As highlighted a Meadow Pipit over
1 Raven flew over

2 + 1 Great Crested Grebes
1 Cormorant
1 Grey Heron
2 Swans
143 Greylag Geese
1 Greylag x ? Goose
12 + 1 Canada Geese
The all-white feral goose
29 (18) Mallard
The all-white feral duck
33 (19) Tufted Ducks
5 + 4 (4 broods) Moorhen
22 Coots
23 Black-headed Gulls
6 Lesser Black-backed Gulls over
16 House Martins
2 (0) Chiffchaff

Some of the Greylag Geese descending in to land: there are 36 in this shot.

This lot seem to be attempting to become a formation team: number 5 needs some more practice.

The pair of Swans go for a fly. Note the BTO silver ring on the right leg of both birds. Also getting in on the action is a juvenile / 1st winter Black-headed Gull. The pen is not yet a full adult (note the duller bill) and is just about 18 months old. She is in fact the daughter of the cob – oh er!

This immature Cormorant had a look and then carried on. Despite the pale on the belly this bird has quite extensive yellow around the base of the bill. Probably a 2nd or 3rd year bird.

(Ed Wilson)