Friday, 9 March 2018

February 24th to March 9th


25th  Bullfinch near car park (PC), Sparrowhawk, redwings (TG and Su)

Long tailed tit eating fat off it's foot.
2nd   Bullfinch and 5 redpolls in car park; goosanders, siskin, jay, sparrow hawk,
         muntjac at river viewpoint; 5 robins, reed bunting, vole, lt tits, goldfinches, dunnock
         and song thrush in garden. (JAS)
Goosanders at the River Viewpoint.

3rd:  Goldcrest collecting cow hair (Great Meadow). Muntjac at Riverside,
         courting dunnocks (2m and 1 fm) on Heron trail near viewing ramp. (Sophie B).
         Woodmouse below feeders.
         Redwing under feeders. Badgers active in sett by the Hayling Lake. (JAS)

4th:  Egyptian Geese (2)  Heronry South. (TG)

A Common gull with black-headed gulls on the Rudd Pit.
9th:  Muntjac in meadow by VC. Goldeneye on Heronry North, grey heron, carrion crow,
        buzzard, stock dove, barn owl (pellets), otter spraint, singing song thrush, dunnock,
        robin and wren on the Heron Trail. Tufted ducks, gadwall, teal, mallard,
        great crested grebe, ketrel, cormorants, mute swan, coots, all around Heronry South.
        Moorhen at garden pond.  (JAS)

Sunday, 4 March 2018

Adult winter Little Gull drifted low north east over west side of Little Paxton village early afternoon. (JW)

Friday, 23 February 2018

February 4th to 23rd

10th  Robin, blue tit (Millie and Ellie)

13th  Goosander 2 males + 1 fm (SM)

15th  Raven x 2 with highland cattle. Jay x 2, green sandpiper,
         41 cormorants' nests occupied. (Neal)

Third Thursday Walk:
          Blackbird, bh gull, blue tit, buzzard, crow, chaffinch, common gull, coot,
          cormorant, dunnock, gadwall, goldfinch, gc grebe, great tit, heron, greylag goose,
          jackdaw, lt tit, mute swan, magpie, mallard, moorhen, robin, shoveler, song thrush,
          stock dove, tufted duck, wigeon, woodpigeon, Canada goose. goldeneye. (D. Wilson)

15th  Kingfisher and pochard (JK)

17th  Goosander pair at  Hayden Hide. (JEC)

18th  15 Gadwall, 3 shoveler, 82 wigeon, 16 pochard, 156 tufted ducks, 15 goldeneye,
          2 goosander, 6 skylarks, 5 reed buntings, 15 linnets, 15 yellowhammers,
         30 goldfinches, lapwing, oystercatcher, Cetti's warbler, 10 meadow pipits,
          green woodpecker, 3 bullfinches, 3 goosanders on river. (Terry Brown )

20th   Mistle thrush 2, oystercatcher, redshank, snipe 19, pintail 10 (4 drakes)
          goosander 3 (2 drakes) red kite 2, buzzard 3, grey wagtail, heron,
          muntjac deer.  (MRD and JC)

22nd  Green woodpecker 2, red kite, buzzard 2, muntjac at visitor centre (JAS)


Friday, 2 February 2018

January 20th to February 3rd

24th: Barn owl at 16:50 in the lower meadow. (NB)

25th: Fieldfare, redwing, song thrush, l-t tit, gadwall, tufted duck, goldeneye,
         common gull, skylark, meadow pipit, shoveler, teal, g-c grebe,
         g-s woodpecker, green woodpecker, stock dove, mistle thrush, jay, kingfisher,
         red kite. 40 spp seen. (Gruhum, Pam and Len)

Not a Siberian chiffchaff
 Probably 12 cormorant nests active. c 20 in the trees at 15:00. (Trevor Gunton)

27th: Great spotted woodpecker at the beach on Cloudy Pit. (NB)

28th: Stoat crossed the road by the visitor centre. (JAS)  2 red kites displaying over A1 pits.
         Cetti's warbler calling at Washout Pit. (GR)

         135 Tufted duck, 48 gadwall, 95 wigeon, 14 shoveler, 9 teal, 14 goldeneye,
         16 yellowhammer, 20 linnet, 2 red kite, 2 Cetti's warbler, water rail, 5 stock dove,
         75 wood pigeon, 6 skylark, 5 bullfinch, kingfisher, 54 common gull. (Terry Brown)
          Red kite 20 feet away in the Hayden Hide. (KMG)

          Stoat (Visitor Centre Meadow) Grey heron, shoveler, gadwall, tufted duck,
          kingfisher, mute swan, cormorant, wood pigeon, 15-20 l-t tits, b-h gull,
          g-s woodpecker, dunnock, robin, wren all at Bill's Bench. (AH)

1st    L-t tits, blue tits, great tits, dunnocks, blackbird, robin x 2, collared dove, wren,
         jackdaw. All at the Visitor Centre.

         Siberian chiffchaff at Stirtloe, (plus three other chiffchaffs) D Harlow.
         Goosander x 4 (3 m and 2 fm)

Treecreeper at Stirtloe
2nd   Stirtloe sewage works: Siberian chiffchaff still present, plus grey and
         pied wagtails, loads of goldcrests, meadow pipit, redwings, fieldfares, l-t tits,
         treecreeper and goldfinches. (JAS)

3rd    Goldcrest, bullfinch, tree creeper on Haul Road. (MK)

Sunday, 21 January 2018

January 8th to 19th 2018

Photos by Huw Lewis, with kind permission.

8th:   Jay, bullfinch, goldcrest, wren, redwings, kestrel x 2, green woodpecker,
         great spotted woodpecker all on the Heron Trail between the visitor centre
         and the river viewpoint. Black squirrel at the visitor centre bird feeder. (JAS)

Bullfinch (Fisherman's Car Park)

10th: Bullfinch, shoveler, gadwall, wigeon, teal, goldeneye (2 drakes), greylags,
         great spotted woodpecker, great crested grebe, redshank, black headed gull.
         (No winter thrushes) (BNT)

12th: Shoveler, teal, wigeon, green sandpiper, goldeneye, great spotted
         woodpecker, green woodpecker.

Great spotted woodpecker male.
Hayden Hide.
13th: Jay x 2, great spotted woodpecker, both on quarry road north of
         Rory's Wood. (NB)

14th: Goldeneye, goosander, green sandpiper, song thrush. (Island Pit) (PC)
Long-tailed tits. Hayden Hide.

15th: Redpoll x 3, treecreeper. (River viewpoint) (AB Hale).

16th: Cormorants, 6 nests occupied and birds displaying on sides of nests.
         (T&V Gunton)

18th: Third Thursday Walk: Blackbird, black headed gull, blue tit, bullfinch,
          crow, chaffinch, common gull, coot, cormorant, dunnock, gadwall,
          great crested grebe, great tit (singing), heron, greylag, jackdaw, little grebe,
          long-tailed tit, magpie, mallard, moorhen, mute swan, robin, shoveler,  starling,
          stock dove, teal, tufted duck, wigeon, wood pigeon, goldeneye. (31 spp.)
          (D. Wilson.)
Wigeon on Heronry South.

18th: Redpoll x 2, just north of River Viewpoint. (Sharon).

         Wildlife Monitoring Group:
         Tufted duck 10, mallard 7, grey heron nesting plus 2, shoveler 25+,
         mute swan 3+2, teal 12, wigeon 25, gt spotted woodpecker m & fm,
         b-h gull 25, kingfisher, Canada goose, gadwall 2, goldeneye 3, blue tit 5, great tit 6,
         jackdaw 6, chaffinch 2, ronin 2, dunnock 2, blackbird, pheasant, cormorant 10
         (at least one pair nesting), moorhen, woodpigeon 6, sparrowhawk m,
         stock dove, l-t tit 7.

Heronry North: Goldeneye 6, g-c grebe 1, wigeon 10, gadwall 8, tufted duck 32, mallard 6,
         Egyptian goose pr, b-h gull 2, blue tit 3, carrion crow. (Alan Coles)

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

January 5th to 7th 2018

Jan 5th: Water rail (meadow trail), teal, sparrowhawk, at the Hayden hide,
              common gull on the river.

Long-tailed tit
Jan 6th: Squirrels, long-tailed tits, blue tits, great tits, wren, robin, blackbird,
              sparrow, hedgehog. (Polly Holday).

              As above plus dunnock, coot, moorhen, mallard, tufted duck, gadwall, wigeon,
              heron, cormorant, sparrowhawk, goldfinch, chaffinch, treecreeper, goldcrest,
              magpie, carrion crow, jay, wood pigeon, bh gull, lbb gull, mute swan,
              canada goose. (Sharon Williamson)

Jan 7th: Water rail x 2, Egyptian geese x 2, grey wagtail x 2, dunlin x 4, (Washout Pit)
              9 Whooper swans. (Diddington Pit.) (G.R.)


              Bh gulls x 180, teal x 20, tufted duck x 122, wigeon x 90, gadwall x 100,
              shoveller x 27, goldeneye x 9, red crested pochard, water rail, lapwing x 2,
              fieldfare x 2, redwing x 2, common gull x 3. (Terry Brown)

              Whooper swan. (Gary)

Sunday, 7 January 2018

December 27th to January 6th.

Happy New Year to you all.

The mild weather generally has continued, but the biggest change has been in water levels. With Southoe Brook flowing well and the river up, the Heronry Lakes are now the highest we have seen in a year. This has driven the shoreline back into the trees and making observations more difficult.
This heron was enjoying the low water level in December.
He's not there now and neither is the island behind him.
I strongly recommend  a visit to the wild bird cover mix in our arable fields where there are flocks of buntings and finches feeding, though it takes patience to see them amongst the crops. The starling roost over the meadow has grown to several thousand birds since Christmas.

Cormorants are well in to nesting now.
This one was photographed last month and
 isn't showing breeding plumage yet.
Dec 31st: Green woodpecker x 2, teal x 6, mute swan x 66, kingfisher, b.h. gulls x 120,
                 mallard x 28, gadwall x 110, shoveller x 44, wigeon x 21, green sandpiper x 3,
                 redwing x 2, goldeneye x 10, buzzard, tufted duck x 176, skylark x 26,
                 yellowhammer x 60, linnet x 4, grey wagtail. (Terry Brown)

                 Pigeon x 2, sparrow hawk x 2, coot x 2 (Alice Gooch)

                 Goldcrest, treecreeper, g.s. woodpecker, long tailed tits, blue tits,
                 great tits, swans, mallards, cormorants, hereon x 2, tufted ducks, wood pigeons,
                 robins, dunnocks, cola tit. (Nicole and Nigel Smith)

January 1st "Ice-breaker" event:
                 Two guided walks involved 59 people. 53 species were seen including
                 green sandpiper,  kingfisher, goldcrest, reed bunting and jay.
                 The walks raised £111 for the Friends to spend on the reserve.
                 Thanks to all 14 of the volunteers involved. (TG)

Jan 2nd:   Robins, blue tits, great tits, wren, tufted ducks, song thrush,
                 grey squirrels. (Jakey and Sharon)
Records of common birds are valuable.
Please keep them coming.
Jan 3rd:   Red crested pochard drake x 2, Kingfisher (all on Heronry South). (John Edwards)
                Green sandpiper x 3 on Island Pit. (Neal)

Jan 6th:   Green woodpecker, g.s.woodpecker x 2, jackdaws, reed buntings,
                kestrel x 2, bullfinches, teal, shoveller, wigeon, gadwall, tufted ducks,
                grey herons, cormorants, carrion crow, long-tailed tits, greylag geese, redwing,
                blackbird, b.h. gull. All on the Heronry Trail. (JAS)

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

December 12th to 26th.

There are regular reports of great white egret from the quarry.

Great tit. Always reliable at the bird tables. 
15th: Chiffchaff x 2 (Hayling), water-rail (Cloudy), siskins x 2 (VC) (Neal)

18th: Grey squirrels, robin (HH) Goosander, goldeneye x 5, (Washout) (PC)
         Black squirrel, redwing and fieldfares on the river trail. ( Mags B)

20th: Wood pigeon, robin, goldfinch, blue tit, long-tailed tit,
          pied wagtail. (Chloe and Sharon)

21st: Squirrel x 5, blue tit and robin. (Lucy Thomson)

Third Thursday Walk: Blackbird, BH gull, blue tit, carrion crow, collared dove,
chaffinch, common gull, coot, cormorant, gs woodpecker, great tit, green sandpiper,
grey heron, greylag, jackdaw, kingfisher, lt tit, magpie, mallard, moorhen,
mute swan,redwing, robin, rook, shoveller, starling, stock dove, teal, tufted duck, widgeon, wood pigeon, goldeneye, goosander. (35 spp)

24th: G.s Woodpecker, mute swan, grey heron, moorhen, tufted duck. (Eileen)

Monday, 25 December 2017

Christmas 2017

Top Christmas Birding to you all. 

No starlings?
Grey, mild weather has been good for birds like kingfishers that stayed here but we need some harsh conditions to make the birds (and birders) gather together in havens like Paxton Pits.

We are on the look out for that classic winter duck the smew, but they are simply not here. A few goosanders pop in and out and there is a good range of dabblers to see; all in fine colour now as they enter their courtship phase.

Speaking of courtship, the cormorants are in their breeding dress (look for the white patch near the tail) and nest building is under way.

Collared dove. Always at the bird-table. 
It's always worth a look at the bird tables. Recent sightings have included redpolls and I expect to see a marsh tit every time I go to the Hayden Hide, but no luck yet. The bird tables attract a host of common birds.

Grey squirrel, always at the bird-table too. 
At dusk I like to take a turn round the Meadow Trail, hoping to hear a Cetti's warbler and see an evening gathering of starlings. There is a small murmuration that gathers over the meadow, but numbers are in the low hundreds. Still enough to attract a sparrow hawk every evening.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, 14 December 2017

December 1st to 11th 2017

Wintering chiff chaff
1st:  Red crested pochard fm, grey wagtail (2), kestrel, goldeneyes, kingfisher (2+)
        Fox sunning: All at Heronry North. (LES) (A+AB)
        GS Woodpecker at Hayden Hide.

3rd:  Gadwall, goldeneye, bullfinch, greenfinch, chaffinch, goldfinch, 2 Firecrests?, 
        goldcrest, redwing,  Gt crested grebe, little grebe, shoveller,
        Egyptian geese. (J+B W)
4th:  Long-tailed tits, snipe. Goldeneye (5)(Kingfisher Hide)
        Ringed (red) Mute swan. c100 stock-doves in roost at 3pm (TG)

6th: Buzzard, kingfisher, kestrel, teal at Bill's Bench.
       Chiff-chaff, bullfinch, goldcrest (2), sparrow hawk on Meadow Trail. (JAS)

7th: 10 Egyptian geese on Heronry South (ES)
        Bluetits, redwings, chaffinches (MES Lenwood)

8th: Goldeneyes (5) Red-crested pochard (fm), jay (3)

9th: Green sandpiper on Heronry North shore,  2 foxes sunbathing. (JAS)

11th Male redpoll on feeder at the Visitor Centre.
       Small starling roost in the meadow/Cloudy Pit attracting a sparrowhawk at dusk.

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

November 26th to December 1st 2017

The view from Bill's Bench.
Look out for kingfishers, grey wagtails, wildfowl and the fox.

26th: 10 Shoveller, 140 tufted duck, 140 gadwall, 95 wigeon, 4 teal, green sandpiper,
         10 goldeneye, water rail, kestrel, 4 pochard, 2 skylark, goldcrest, grey wagtail. 
         (Terry Brown)

          Green sandpiper, (SW corner of Island Pit) 2 kingfisher (Heronry lakes)
          4 drake goldeneyes (Heronry N.) 8 Egyptian geese (Heronry South)
          (A&G Williams)

Male bullfinch

27th:  Peregrine falcon, low over Heronry North (TG)

28th:  3 gadwall, 5 mallard at Bill's Bench. (L. Neverad)

1st:    Grey wagtail, bullfinch, fox, fieldfares, 4 goldeneye, green sandpiper on
          Heronry Lakes. (JS)

Sunday, 26 November 2017

November 18th to 25th 2017

November 20th: 14 Egyptian geese at the Hayden Hide. (JCC)

November 22nd: 2 Golden eye at far end of lake from Kingfisher Hide. (JCC)

November 23rd:  11:45 Peregrine passed by Kingfisher hide, heading north. Popped up 2 teal,
                             but missed. Carried on north. (CB)
                             2:10 Red Kite, flew past V.C heading south. (A.Coles)

A couple of weeks ago: Reed warbler at least 100 greylags, tufted ducks (Kingfisher Hide),
                             great crested grebe, grey herons, 5 shovelers, widgeons,
                             cormorants, 6 squirrels (Haydn hide), chaffinches and rabbits. (TR)

Goosander duck

November 25th:  2 kingfishers, 4 goldeneye, 2 goosanders, teal, widgeon, Egyptian geese,
                            mallards, gadwall, redwings, fieldfares, stock doves, reed buntings,
                            robins, blackbirds, song thrush, sparrow hawk, buzzard, kestrel. (JAS).

Goosander drake.

Friday, 17 November 2017

November 13th to 17th 2017

November 13th: Hayling Lake: 3 widgeon, 1 tufted duck. (LN)

November 14th: Goldcrest, tree creeper, lapwing, little egret, Heronry Lakes (AB)

November 16th: Heronry North: Siskins, 2 jays, grey wagtail, blackcap,
                           green sandpiper. (Neal)
                           Pair of goldeneyes (Colin B)

Third Thursday Walk: blackbird, b.h. gull, blue tit, great tit, crow,
                           chaffinch, common gull, coot, cormorant, gadwall, g.c. grebe, heron,
                           greylag, herring gull, jackdaw, kingfisher, little egret, long tailed tit,
                           magpie, mallard, moorhen, mute swan, shoveler, stock dove, teal,
                           tufted duck, wigeon, wood pigeon, wren, Egyptian goose, Canada goose,
                           goldeneye = 32 spp. (D Wilson)
                           Jackdaw roost making a lot of noise, probably 5000 birds. (TG)

November 17th: Grey and pied wagtails on roof of weigh station at Lafarge plant.
                           2 lapwings (A. Harrold) Red admiral, common darter,
                           bumble bee. (Edwin Allured)

Red Admiral

November 1st to 12th 2017

November 1st:   Heronry South (Bill's Bench) snipe, shoveller, teal, widgeon,
                           mixed tit flock with treecreeper, bank vole. (J Knight)

November 2nd:  Flock of redwings over car-park.

November 6th:  Pochard, geese, shovellers and many more omn Heronry Lakes.

November 9th:  Green sandpiper, jay, green woodpecker, grey wagtail, common gull,
                          c 0 stock doves, c60 cormorants,  (TG)

November 12th: Blue tits and great tits on feeders. (SH)
                           170 bh gulls, 12 shoveller, 28 common gull, 59 mute swan, 210 gadwall,
                           190 widgeon, 116 tufted duck, 333 greylags, 8-0 woodpigeon, 6 pochard,
                            8 linnet, yellowhammer, grey wagtail, 200 jackdaws, water rail,
                            2 goldeneye, 6 teal, lapwing, little grebe. (Terry Brown)


Thursday, 2 November 2017

October 28th to November 1st 2017

October 30th:     Muntjac on path to Kingfisher hide. Egyptian geese. (MR & AN)
                           Reed buntings in arable field. (JH)

Female redd bunting in Peter's Field. (JH)

October 31st:     4 Egyptian geese, brambling. (Rosalind)
                           Merlin near Env. Ed centre. 2 grey wagtails, common sandpiper,
                           wigeon flying in. 3 foxes under heronry. Hayden Hide. (C. Burgh)
                           Field mouse near visitor centre. (L. Nevard)

November 1st:   Snipe, shoveller, teal, wigeon, bank vole, mixed tits
                           plus goldcrest and treecreeper at Bill's Bench. (J. Knight)