Monday, 23 February 2015

Sutton Bingham - Sun 22 Feb

A quick visit early morning produced a Little Grebe with a drake Tufted Duck on West Pool and nine Wigeon at the southern end, nothing much else though!
A quick update on a couple of flying visits to the reservoir over the past week...not really worthy of separate entries, but some patch year ticks were picked up. On Mon 16 Feb a single Coot was present off the northern causeway, my only one of the year at Sutton Bingham and it was gone the next day. A drake Gadwall was on West Pool with a few Mallards on Thu 19 Feb, and like the Coot did not hang around. Finally, Fri 20 Feb produced a single adult Mediterranean Gull briefly late afternoon and a Stonechat on the edge of West Pool. So three new ticks for the patch year list over the past week.
Sutton Bingham year list for 2015 now at 63 species.

Monday, 16 February 2015

Abbotsbury - Sun 15 Feb

As it was a lovely afternoon I popped down to Abbotsbury to try and connect with the Greenland White-fronted Goose that I had dipped at Radipole RSPB last month. I 'scoped the Swannery from the road and failed to locate the goose (it was viewable from Chesil Beach if only I had been bothered to trek out there!). I did, however, see the three Long-tailed Duck and a couple of Scaup, so by no means a wasted trip.
A wander around the Sub-tropical Gardens failed to produce anything of note today.

East Coker WTW - Sun 15 Feb

With a hour to kill late morning I popped in to the Water Treatment Works at East Coker for the first time in ages! It was a hive of activity and I could really have done with spending a little more time there, especially to check out the ten or so Chiffchaff present. At least forty Pied Wagtails were feeding on and around the sewage beds alongside a single Grey Wagtail and two Meadow Pipits. A Treecreeper put in a brief appearance and a single Goldcrest was also noted.

Sutton Bingham - Sun 15 Feb

I spent a good ninety minutes on the patch this morning and started off by checking out West Pool where a flock of forty Meadow Pipits were feeding and a male Reed Bunting was singing away.
I then concentrated on the southern end of the reservoir, specifically around Cotton Bridge where a small flock of six Siskin were feeding in alders with a couple of Goldfinch. A female Kestrel was another new bird for the SBR year list.
A total of twenty-eight Snipe were put up from the water's edge as I walked along, and wildfowl numbers are starting to dwindle with just thirty or so Teal and twenty-two Wigeon. A Kingfisher did a fly past and a couple of Raven passed overhead. All in all a pleasant morning on the patch.
Sutton Bingham year list for 2015 now at 59 species.

Sutton Bingham - Fri 13 Feb

I managed to pop in to the reservoir on my way home tonight and was able to check out the gull roost for the first time in a couple of weeks. Another massive count of Mediterranean Gulls tonight with a total of fifty birds of which forty-seven were adults (some of which were starting to look pretty smart moulting in to summer plumage) and three second-winter birds.
At least 150 Common Gulls, twenty five Lesser Black Backed Gulls, 700+ Black-headed Gulls and 1200+ Herring Gulls completed the roost, and more birds were arriving when I departed just before 6pm.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Sutton Bingham - Sun 8 Feb

I'd been laid up all weekend with food poisoning, but managed to drag myself out for half an hour for some fresh air (which actually did me some good). A Chiffchaff was a surprise find as it fed in willows by the outflow stream. I checked it out thoroughly, but it was not a tristis-type unfortunately.
A Stonechat was feeding at West Pool and a couple of Meadow Pipits and Grey Wagtails were at the dam. Several Redwings are still present, but there was a distinct lack of any water birds day, with the exception of Great Crested Grebes which numbered well over thirty.
Sutton Bingham year list for 2015 now at 57 species.

Sutton Bingham - Wed 5 Feb

I made a fairly short visit to Sutton Bingham mid-afternoon and despite being "on patch" for less than an hour, added three new birds to the patch year list. Firstly, a Little Egret was feeding on the edge of a partly frozen West Pool. An unusual February record, but a welcome sight. I then walked along the reservoir near the Canoe Club where a pair of Reed Buntings were seen, and as I returned to the car a Peregrine passed overhead. There was very little else about today, though a couple of Meadow Pipits were put up as I walked along.

Monday, 2 February 2015

Sutton Bingham - Sun 1 Feb

I managed an hour at the reservoir this morning and I started off with a walk around the southern end, where a total of 160 Teal were present alongside four Wigeon. With little else here I moved up to the Water Treatment Works and dam. A further 86 Wigeon were off the dam where my first patch Grey Wagtail of the year was also present with half a dozen Meadow Pipits. Another patch year tick came in the form of a Goldcrest at the Water Treatment Works as it fed with a small party of tits. A Kingfisher whizzed up the outflow stream and was the only other bird of note.