Sunday, 11 September 2016

A week end at Longham Lakes

Saturday 10th 
I was out at Longham Lakes in afternoon hoping for an another Little Gull as I enjoyed watching the one on the 4th, but it was not to be with a lot of disturbance on the lake, with canoeist all over the place by the slip up by the pump house on south and most of the birds pushed up to the south end of the lake. So I gad ago at counting the bird that were on the two lakes.
Also there is a wasp nest in the bank leading up the path from the metal gate.
Across the two lakes I mad the following counts.
Mute Swan-11
Gadwall –2
Mallard – 5
Tufted Duck - 74
Little Grebe – 21
Great Crested Grebe – 23
Grey Heron – 1
Coot – 157
Lapwing – 12
Green Woodpecker – 2
Swallow – c50
 Herring Gull - 12
Black headed Gull - c20
Cormorant - 9

Sunday 11th
I was back at the lakes again this time with son , which was a nice sunny afternoon, but on arriving my haert sank a little as the canoiest were back on the lake with the model yacht enthusists 
and a quick look across the lakes there did not seem much about.
Once again I started to count the birds on the North Lake starting with Great Crested Grebes - 16 then asked my son to have ago at counting the Tufted Ducks as he likes these ducks, he came up with a count of 25 which was a good count but just to check I counted them myself  and got 34. From here we went up to the shire horse field as he likes look at the horses. In this field I found a Stonechat but nothing else I was hoping for a Whinchat, so it was back to South Lake and the North West Corner of the lake to start counting the Tufted Duck here but I only got to 15 when a gull came and settled on the water. I caught a glimps of some black patterning across the wings and back and thought can it be, so I quickly panned the scope on it and watched I took in as much detail as I could with the bird just drifting across towards the sedge in the North West Corner. With only seeing my first of this species on the 4th September flying I needed to see this bird fly to just confirm what I was thinking and sure after waiting what seemed like an age the eventually was pushed in to the sedge and lifted and flew towards the island and settled again but still being pushed back nortwards . I was correct in my assement that it was my second juvenile Little Gull of the month/year. They are wonderful danity bouayant gulls with smart black W across the wings and mantle  a black tail-band,Black crown and large ear spot
Record capture of Little Gull a very cropped image

Monday, 5 September 2016

A evening at Longham Lakes

Sunday 4th September.
Went over to Longham lakes this evening just to see what was about but did not expect to get stopped in my tracks.
I started to scan the Island from the slip way were I found 16 Lapwing then started to look across the lake then what’s that flying across the lake
I get the scope on it and it is a gull , a gull with a Black W going from one wing across the mantle and long the other wing I watch and it as a very buoyant flight  low over the water taking what I presume are flies of the surface. So I make my way round as fast as I could to the west side almost up to the small island to get a better view . I wondered what it was at first a Little Gull or Kittiwake, my first thought though was of Little Gull as it was smaller than the black head gulls, so I made a phone call to Paul for some advice  but I missed is return call. I made more note so I could check with my books when I got home. As the gate was going to shut at 7.30pm by the clock and it was 7.00pm now I though I better get a move on before the gate shut. To my horror when I got back to the car the gate was shut! but luckily the person you locked the gate was waiting for me. Told me it was a private car park, showed my permit and told it is only 7. 10 now only to be told they shut the gate about 7.00 to 7.15 so I should watch the time! But it was great to watch my first Little gull checked all my books and that what it was  brilliant. I tried in vain to get some pictures with my phone through the scope but it was impossible. This Little Gull now put my species list up to 87 for the sight and a point score of 94 for the Patch Work Challenge.

Little Gull