25 Nov 16

Priorslee Lake

Afternoon Update: 13:40

1st-winter drake Scaup still present. Via BirdGuides Here

Morning Report: 07:20 – 09:35

Sunrise: 07:50 GMT

1°C > 4°C: Fine, clear and frosty. Light N wind. Very good visibility

(156th visit of the year)

I was told this morning that a Tawny Owl has been calling from the copse between Teece Drive and the Ricoh area over the last few nights. I was told the same thing a few years ago, but nothing came of that. Will pursue. It has always seemed to me that there ought to be a Tawny Owl somewhere around the lake area: I have only ever seen one bird and the fishermen, who often spend nights here, tell me they never see or hear owls

There was some activity on the old Celestica site today but as far as I could see it was likely that the contractors working on the Castle Farm Interchange improvements were using it to store their vehicles and other equipment.

Notes from today
- a drake Shoveler was new in: as with the last one it had nothing to do with the duck that stayed with its friends the Gadwalls
- of the 6 drake Pochard, one was a 1st winter bird
- lots of Goosanders today: a brownhead and two drakes flew E; then 5 birds seen circling low over the lake, with 2 breaking off and leaving to the E and the other 3 flying off E; later 6 more (2 drakes) flew W; much later a brownhead flew W
- two Little Grebes today: one in the NE as usual; and one in the NW area
- not sure many Lapwings there were: 1 flew E; some time later 3 flew W then S; and later again 5 flew E: the same birds?
- 77 of the over flying Wood Pigeons were high-enough in 6 groups to be considered ‘migrants’ as opposed to local movements
- 3 Grey Squirrels: are they not supposed to hibernate?

Counts of birds flying over the lake (in addition to those on / around lake)
- 15 (>4?) Goosanders (see notes)
- 2 Cormorants
- 5? Lapwings (see notes)
- 7 Black-headed Gulls
- 35 Lesser Black-backed Gulls
- 1 Herring Gull
- 5 Feral Pigeons (1 group)
- 107 Wood Pigeons
- 133 Jackdaws
- 6 Rooks
- 13 Redwings
- 3 Pied Wagtails
- 3 Greenfinches
- 5 Goldfinches
- 7 Siskins
- 2 Linnets
- 1 Yellowhammer

The counts from the lake area
- 2 + 1 Mute Swans
- 4 (2?) Gadwall once again
- 6 (5?) Mallard
- 2 (1?) Shovelers
- 7 (6?) Pochard
- 109 (67?) Tufted Ducks
- 1 (1?) (Greater) Scaup
- 1 Grey Heron still
- 2 Little Grebes
- 8 Great Crested Grebes
- 10 Moorhens again
- 63 Coots
- >165 Black-headed Gulls
- 24 Lesser Black-backed Gulls
- 3 Herring Gulls

A good sunrise this morning.

Arty: what!

Here is this morning’s drake Shoveler: has been a good Autumn for records of this species.

Here the first winter drake (Greater) Scaup can be directly compared with an adult drake Pochard – note the red eye on the Pochard.

The pale back on this bird invites comparison with the (Greater) Scaup. It is in fact a duck Pochard, evident from the ring around the eye with a thin line running back from it. Had the bird been alert the shape of the head and the bill would have identified it easily.

Three fiery Tufted Ducks.

Well the camera never lies. Through the binoculars I thought these were 3 brownhead Goosanders. A grab shot in poor light reveals two drakes and 1 brownhead.

These two Cormorants – an adult and an immature with the white belly – looked at the lake but decided not to come in.

(Ed Wilson)


The Flash: 09:45 – 10:05

(116th visit of the year)

- Herring Gulls are not that common here: this 2nd winter bird joined in with the Black-headed Gulls harassing the Goosanders and Tufted Ducks that were trying to feed before turnings attention its to the Grey Heron that protested loudly
- the sun was shining strongly and I again checked the ivy: a VERY late wasp sp. as well as the usual flies

Over-flying birds noted

The counts from the water
- 2 Mute Swans
- 3 Canada Geese
- 1 all white feral goose
- 24 (17?) Mallard
- 23 (16?) Tufted Ducks
- 8 (2?) Goosander
- 1 Grey Heron again
- 4 Great Crested Grebes
- 5 Moorhens
- 13 Coots again
- 35 Black-headed Gulls
- 1 Herring Gull

Proof: a wasp sp. on 25 November!

(Ed Wilson)

On this day in ...........
Priorslee Lake
6 Gadwall 
1 Teal 
2 Pochard 
99 Tufted Duck
225 Coots counted 
1 Woodcock 
6 Herring Gulls
1 Great Black-backed Gull
Green Woodpecker
231 Fieldfare
66 Redwings 
c.375 Jackdaws
2 Redpolls
5 Siskins
(Ed Wilson)

Priorslee Lake
31 Greylag Geese
3 Gadwall 
8 Pochard 
23 Tufted Duck
143 Coots
1 Yellow-legged Gull
19 Redwings
2 Fieldfares
259 Jackdaws
(Ed Wilson / Allan Heath)

Priorslee Lake
206 Starlings going to roost
C.500 Lesser Black-backed Gulls
10 Herring Gulls
1 Yellow legged Gull
1 Caspian Gull
c.700 Black-headed Gulls
(Martin Adlam)