5 Apr 15

Priorslee Lake: 05:37 – 07:00 // 08:25 – 09:19

Telford sunrise: 06:35

6.0°C > 7.5°C Yet another day off low overcast. Moderate N wind. Mostly poor visibility, better at Trench.

Highlights this morning were
- >200 Meadow Pipits passing N: by far my largest-ever number on passage here. There seemed to be no other species involved in the movement
- Swallow(s?) and single House Martin at the lake were my first of the year

(41st visit of the year)

- back to just one pair of Gadwall this morning
- 1 Great Crested Grebe seen flying apparently from The Flash to the lake while I was walking the other way. There was one ‘missing’ from The Flash but no obvious extra bird here
- the 12 large gulls were in a single party cloud-hopping. Although they were calling I am not confident about separating Lesser Black-backed and Herring Gulls on call
- Raven calling again from trees on N side: later 3 flew N
- 3 Sand Martins with the Swallow and House Martin
- probably 2 single Swallows as one noted with obviously long tail streamers
- noisy Nuthatch calling alongside Teece Drive again: and equally persistent, if somewhat quieter, Treecreeper
- 11 Song Thrushes singing this morning
- 1 Mistle Thrush singing well to the SE of the lake: usually these are to the far W
- just 20 of the Meadow Pipit were over here
- my first moth of the year in the Priorslee Avenue tunnel. With all the building and road works all the street-lamps both along Teece Drive and the footpath at the W end of the lake are inoperative and I am deprived of these ‘moth traps’!

Counts of birds flying over the lake (in addition to those on / around lake), again affected by the poor visibility
- 6 Greylag Geese in 4 groups
- 8 Canada Geese in 4 groups
- 3 (2♂) Mallard
- 12 large gulls
- 1 Stock Dove
- 2 Feral Pigeons
- 113 Jackdaws
- 5 Rooks only
- 2 Pied Wagtails
- 20 Meadow Pipits

Counts of birds leaving roosts around the lake
- 33 Magpies

Count of singing warblers
- 7 Chiffchaffs again

The counts from the lake area

- 2 Mute Swans: pen on nest
- 2 (1♂) Gadwall
- 3 (2♂) Mallard
- 23 (15♂) Tufted Duck
- 1 Grey Heron
- 3 Cormorants
- 11 Great Crested Grebes again
- 14 Moorhens
- 51 Coots
- 1 Herring Gull

I found this single large Primrose plant well inside the trees along the N side. Odd that it is an isolated example and in deep shade but it seems not to be a cultivar and likely genuine. I do not have comprehensive plant records for the site but as far as I recall my first here.

I am sure we can do better than this over the coming weeks: a male Chiffchaff – a male because it is singing.

(Ed Wilson)


Priorslee Flash: 07:10 – 08:15

(37th visit of the year)

- Mallard all over the place today: at least 4 on house roofs and several asleep in the roadway
- I am told that the council(?) treated the goose eggs on the island yesterday. I was also told that a party of 3 goslings has been taken by a local ginger cat
- another Heron sighting though this bird was flying high over and cloud-hopping
- extended visit while I counted the passing Meadow Pipits: passage seemed to more or less stop after 08:05 when I had 192(!) in the log. What a way to get a site year-tick!

Noted flying over
- 1 Grey Heron
- 4 Feral Pigeons
- 192 Meadow Pipits

Count of singing warblers
- 4 Chiffchaffs

The counts from the water
- 2 Mute Swans
- 5 Greylag Geese
- 29 Canada Geese
- 1 all-white feral goose
- 17 (14♂) Mallard
- 1 white feral duck
- 29 (19♂) Tufted Ducks
- 2 Great Crested Grebes
- 3 Moorhen
- 14 Coots again
No gulls here

Nesting time is it? This female Blackbird has a mouthful

Why do they do this at this time of year: a drake Mallard on a house-roof at The Flash......

... and a duck Mallard as well 

All that chasing after ducks is exhausting work but this is perhaps not the best place to go to sleep!

(Ed Wilson)


Trench Lock Pool: 09:28 – 09:47

(20th visit of the year)

Very quiet with no hirundines seen: this is often a good location for early birds

- 3 only Great Crested Grebes seen again but another may have been on a nest somewhere
- 1 Song Thrush in song was my first of the year at this site
- 5 Goldfinches with single pairs of Blue and Great Tits were excitedly calling and jumping around on branches of a tree with an ivy-covered trunk. Their behaviour suggested they had found a roosting Tawny Owl: if so it was staying hidden and not about to fly off!

The counts from the water
- 2 Mute Swans
- 6 Canada Geese
- no ‘real’ Mallard
- 3 feral Mallard-type ducks
- 11 (7♂) Tufted Ducks
- 1 Little Grebe
- 3 Great Crested Grebes
- 3 Moorhens
- 54 Coots
No gulls here

A difficult shot: this small moth was silhouetted against the lit strip light in the Priorslee Avenue tunnel. Forcing the flash on the camera allowed some detail to be seen – mainly the discal spot which is common on many species of pug moth. However I think this is a rather worn Brindled Pug from a combination of wing-shape and flight time. Note the small plumed midge sp. at the bottom of the shot.

(Ed Wilson)


On this day in 2006 and 2011
Nedge Hill - Map
Ring Ouzel
60 Golden Plover
20 Yellowhammer
Willow Warbler
4 Stock Doves
(Andy Latham/John Isherwood/Ed Wilson)
Ruddy Duck
36 Sand Martins
1 Swallow
2 Blackcaps
6 Chiffchaffs
5 Willow Warblers
Barn Owl
Ruddy Ducks
(Ed Wilson/Martin Adlam)