The Safari was a little perturbed by the windy weather this morning, old achy bones Frank wouldn't want to go out in it so we pottered around in the garage and garden for an hour or so, ending up finishing off a bat box the wood for which had been partially cut to size by our Extreme Photographer a while ago (He should have been out in the wilds of deepest darkest Pembrokeshire today trying out his new 600mm lens...watch this space!).
The weather didn't deteriorate any more and there was no sign of any rain and finding an old mouse nibbled duvet in back of the garage we threw it in the back of the Land Rover for Frank to lie on in the hide and headed off to the nature reserve to meet up with BD (@scyrene)
He was already there by the time we arrived and showed what was thought to be an Alder Leaf Beetle he'd found.
The light this afternoon was 'variable' to say the least, sometimes good, sometimes harsh and sometimes almost dark! There didn't seem to be much about but sit and wait and you never know what might turn up so that's what we did. Frank ended up fast asleep and snoring on his 'new' comfy bed.
There were a good few Coots on the water along with some gulls, mostly Black Headed and Common Gulls with a very cold and wet/ill looking Herring Gull away over on the scrape.
|1st winter Black Headed Gull|
A large-ish flock of Woodpigeons went westwards over the trees on the far side, a closer look revealed that at least a third of them were Collared Doves, a proper count was interrupted three or four birds in as that one was a small wader. Away over the hospital it flew turning south and then north and at one point looked like it might have thought about turning round and coming back but it didn't. Whatever it was it would have been a new bird on the year's list for here.
Another flock of Woodies came by this one with fewer Collared Doves and no waders. One juvenile Woody landed in front of us for a drink and another flying south along the back of the embankment wasn't one at all but another Jay, annoyingly B was unable to connect with it before it was out of view beyond the nearby branches.
We hoped that a Water Rail might come out of the reed-beds but one never did, a Cetti's Warbler sang briefly a couple of times but didn't show itself.
The ducks looked reet dapper when the sun shone. We had a choice of close Teal and Shovelers with a supporting cast of in-flying Tufted Ducks and Mallards with a pair of Gadwall further out buy the scrape.
|Aren't Teal just little stunners - displaying already too when the sun shone on them|
OK so it wasn't the most exciting session we've ever had at the nature reserve but as ever there's always something to see and enjoy and you just never know what might drop in or fly through at anytime, so if you don't go and look you deffo won't see.
Where to next? Back on good old Patch 2w tomorrow but not until lunchtime.
In the meantime let us know what flew through unknown in your outback.