Monday, 18 November 2013

Old Red Eyes is Back

On Friday we revisited one of the most popular and successful spring time locations. This time rather than meeting in the village we met at the railway line and crossed it in between the roaring trains and began the long walk to the Humber bank. In the spring the bushes and fields are teeming with Warblers, Yellowhammers and Linnets, but at this time of year there is much less to see. However, when we reached Yellowhammer Lane in the afternoon we did manage to spot a single Lesser Redpoll.
Old Red Eyes

Lesser Redpoll
When we reached the ponds then the wildlife became more noticeable. In the morning the whole area was awash with dog walkers, but the advantage with the afternoon was that these were completely absent. As we looked in the first area of water, only to be rewarded with Mute Swans and Moorhens, I did hear a Bullfinch, which Bob managed to locate for most people to view. The anglers had been increasing the height of their banks, so it was quite difficult to see the waterfowl on them. We did manage to see some Wigeon. 
Heron on the Humber

There was absolutely nothing to see on the Skiing Lake in the morning, but in the afternoon there was a female Goldeneye and a mysterious very distant brown duck. Unfortunately, the previously resident Kingfisher or the other week's Grey Wagtail were absent. On the river bank we could hear Reed Buntings, but they remained concealed in the reedbeds. From the bank we had a better view into the main angling lake, which was replete with wildfowl including more Wigeon, plus Tufted Duck, Cormorants, etc.
Strange "Birds of Prey"

In the morning on the exposed mud were several Bar-tailed Godwits, plus Lapwings, various gulls, and a single Heron. In the afternoon the tide had come in, and there wasn't so much to see here. In the morning we tried to peer into the distant marsh, but there was no wind, so the reeds were at their full height, and it wasn't possible to see large areas of water. Consequently we didn't see a single bird there. There were a few Curlews in front of the marsh in the afternoon as a result of the high tide. 
When we returned along the Boating Lake towards our cars, a few water skiers had taken to the water and the odd brown duck had moved near to our position. We walked along the lane concealed by the trees and when we emerged it was possible to see it was a Common Scoter. As soon as it spotted us it flew to a halfway position between us and the water skiers, initially taking refuge with a pair of Friday Unmentionables. 
Common Scoter
 Common Scoter
 Common Scoter
 Long-tailed Tit
 Lesser Redpoll
 Lesser Redpoll

When we reached Yellowhammer Lane a Redpoll was still present, but this one seemed to have a much deeper red head than the one we had seen earlier - again it was alone. Was the apparent change just a trick of the light?

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