11 Mar 15

Priorslee Lake: 5:28am - 9:01am

Telford sunrise: 6:33am

1.5°C > 6.0°C Clear and frosty to start with cloud soon beginning to encroach from the SW. Moderate SE wind fell away before freshening again from the S. Very good visibility.

A few numbers different but little change overall

(36th visit of the year)

- 6 Gadwall again this morning
- duck Pochard still not positively ID-ed as the previous incumbent: seen early when too dark to check; but it then seemed to disappear
- a small duck – Teal-sized – was seen before 06:00 landing with one of the long-term groups of 3 Mallard – noticeable that the groups comprises a drake with 2 ducks! But was not re-found
- at least 18 Great Crested Grebes found this morning – the water was rather smoother and the birds were sitting around more. There may have been at least one more but a very immature Cormorant confused me more than once as I did a quick sweep before that all moved again
- Sparrowhawk seen leaving its traditional nest area
- 11 Black-headed Gulls arrived and then left: later 11 present again – presumed same
- 12 Song Thrushes heard in song this morning – highest number this year: another 3 birds seen

Counts of birds flying over the lake (in addition to those on / around lake)
- 1 Greylag Goose
- 23 Canada Geese in 7 groups
- 14 Lesser Black-backed Gulls
- 4 Herring Gulls
- 12 Feral Pigeons
- c.480 Jackdaws
- 21 Rooks only
- 9 Fieldfare
- 2 Redwings
- 1 Pied Wagtail
- 1 Siskin

Counts of birds leaving roosts around the lake
- 47 Magpies exactly
- 7 Redwings

Neither roost systematically counted this morning – incomplete numbers

The counts from the water
- 2 Mute Swans
- 6 (3♂) Gadwall
- 11 (6♂) Mallard
- 1 (0♂) Pochard
- 11 (8♂) Tufted Duck
- 3 Cormorants
- 1 Little Grebe
- 18? Great Crested Grebes
- 7 Moorhens
- 66 Coots
- 11 Black-headed Gulls only
- 1 possible Yellow-legged Gull
- 1 Lesser Black-backed Gull
- 21 Herring Gulls
The moon is a-waning: here it is yesterday (10th) morning.

...and 24 hours later, today.

Today’s the red sky warning: wind and rain on the way.

Cloud beginning to move in: the 14 small dots are outbound Jackdaws in the distance (the bent vapour-trail was left by a US Air Force C-17 Globemaster inbound to Ramstein in Germany if anyone else is interested)

But still some pleasant early sun.

The fields to the E and N of Castle Farm Way: if planning permission is granted it might not look like this by the same time next year.

Here is a somewhat better shot of a flying Stock Dove. Smaller and shorter-tailed than a Wood Pigeon. Can often be noticed as they come in to land / perch with wings raised in quite a deep ‘V’, though not usually as much as Feral / Racing Pigeons.

Whereas this isn’t a very good shot at all! But what this edit does show is the iridescent neck mark; and the dark-bordered upper-wing lacking any white

A Buzzard: very fierce-looking with those piercing yellow irises.

And chased off by a Crow – as they often are.

I logged this a 1st year Lesser Black-backed Gull on the basis of the darkness of the upper wing with dark secondaries and secondary-coverts. However I was surprised at the paleness of the under-wing which I attributed to the strong light. The head is also rather pale but I assumed this was a bird moulting in to 1st summer plumage when the head would be mainly white. The photo reveals that the inner primaries are slightly paler. Upon reflection I am inclined to think this is in fact a 1st year Yellow-legged Gull. However this single shot is not going to give me a positive ID.

(Ed Wilson)


Priorslee Flash: 9:04am - 9:41am

(32nd visit of the year)

- no sign of the Shoveler today

Again very little noted flying over!
- 2 Lesser Black-backed Gulls

The counts from the water
- 2 Mute Swans
- 30 Canada Geese
- 1 all-white feral goose
- 20 (15♂) Mallard
- 1 white feral duck
- 73 (43♂) Tufted Ducks
- 4 Great Crested Grebes again
- 4 Moorhens
- 18 Coots again
- 11 Black-headed Gulls
One of these Canada Geese was showing a pinkish growth(?) at the base of the upper mandible and on the head. A normal bird for comparison. I can find no reference to any such feature on the web and am therefore mystified as to its cause. The bird otherwise looked and behaved like a normal and healthy bird.

(Ed Wilson)

On this day in 2006 and 2011
Priorslee Lake
1 Chiffchaff
(Ed Wilson)
Common Gull
1 Goldeneye
1 Goosander
1 Ruddy Duck
Water Rail
(Ed Wilson)