Wednesday, 2 May 2012

New Reserve Gets Nod of Approval

Today we were able to visit a brand new nature reserve, and the morning group encountered 45 species.  The sighting highlight was a Kingfisher, probably only seen by 2 (incl the tutor); whilst the best bird heard was a Grasshopper Warbler – again only heard by 2 (incl the tutor & a different participant).  In the afternoon the Kingfisher was almost in the same place, and was seen by all but one participant.
In the morning I made the mistake of walking round the edge of the reserve, and although this yielded Willow Warbler, Whitethroat and Sedge Warbler, it would have been better to have plunged straight into the bushes by the way-marked paths.  In the afternoon we tried this method, but by that time the small passerine birds had largely vanished.  The strong winds prevented many birds from being tempted to sing high from exposed song-posts.  One notable exception were the Linnets, which on today’s showing seemed to be the most ubiquitous species, as we came across them everywhere throughout the northern section of the site. 
The Kingfisher was in the area of the pumping station, and near here were breeding Tree Sparrows and Swallows collecting mud.  A Lesser Whitethroat was heard singing and was even observed by the afternoon group.  The Sedge warblers were much quieter after lunch, and the Grasshopper and Reed Warblers remained completely silent.
Les spotted a large female Sparrowhawk which gave good views before disappearing towards North Bransholme.  The only other raptor species seen was a Kestrel in the morning & a pair near the parking area during the last part of the lunch hour.
The morning group, especially, were much impressed with the site, and are keen to visit again without a biting north-easterly wind.

Sedge Warbler
 Linnet [male]
 Linnet [female] (c) 2012 Tony Robinson
 Reed Bunting
 The Duck which Cannot be Named
 Small Tortoiseshell [very worn]
Immature Gull Trying to Devour a Fish 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good stuff! Great to read the kingfisher and gropper info turned up the goods. Don't forget to walk up the access road to the drain/pumping station and scan the field on the left for breeding lapwing and passage chats/wagtails. You can also scan this field from its SW corner, or the small hill overlooking it. Scanning the playing field from the SW corner of the reserve might also turn up wheatears, as well as various gulls. RB