Saturday, 20 November 2010

Friday 19th November 2010

14:30 > 16:00
Sunny, calm, 9c.

A walk around the perimeter on another typical Autumnal day. Still some warmth in the sun at times but once the mist starting to rise off the river and the lower fields there was a definite chill in the air.

As for the site the second phase of landscaping has started with the large deep pit due east of the first area being filled in with soil.

Birdwise not a lot, twenty or so Lapwing the same number of Black Headed Gulls and a couple of Common Gulls with a single Green Sandpiper flitting about was about all of note around the main body itself. Out on the mud Pied Wagtail numbers continue to build whilst a pair of Meadow Pipits were briefly seen.

On the River Ouse a confiding Kingfisher was watched for a while in the pools around Pebble Beach whilst over the other bank on one of the Cosgrove lakes, one that had building numbers last week (see below) just a handful of Great Crested Grebe remain.

As the light started to go a flock of five Little Egret flew over heading for their evening roost at Linford no doubt.

Friday, 12 November 2010

Friday 12th November 2010

13:30 > 14:00
Cloud then heavyish rain, westerly wind 11c,

A brief visit before the clouds burst once more this week. The new workings are flooded well in some parts so either its collective rainfall or there is a leak in from Front Brook, the latter option could prove interesting to say the least one winter progresses. Elsewhere water slightly higher too.

Birdwise not too much about. A single Green Sandpiper and a Common Snipe over were the only real waders of note. Around fifty or so Lapwing on site and roughly the same number of gulls a handful being Common Gull the rest Black Headed.

In the hedgerows now large number of winter thrushes (Fieldfare & Redwing) and pockets through all during the visit so it looks like a real movement is underway. The same might be said of Woodpigeon as the winter flock that frequents the west end is buiding too, circ 150 birds so far.

Bird of the day though was a smart male Yellowhammer. Once the rain hammered (see what I did there) it down I took refuge under some of the trees along the Ridge. A flash of brightness in the bush to my left alerted me to this Yellowhammer no more than six foot away from me taking cover too and looking straight at me. He seemed more interested in me than I was of him and was not spooked at all. A surreal moment.

Wednesday 10th November 2010

14:00 > 15:30
Sun, cold NW wind. 8c

An afternoon stroll around the site with a first chance to have a look at what was on the now quiet lakes at Cosgrove. Levels at the main part of the site are higher, with some new areas flooded and the existing area of water expanding daily it seems.

Birds of the day were a pair of Dunlin on the wader pool to the west. Also more Green Sandpipers now on site with at least four present possibly more.

A handful of Golden Plover could be found in amongst the eighty or so Lapwing dotted about the site. Five Little Egrets also potttered about in the shallows.

Along the River Ouse a Kingfisher and a multitude of Wrens (yes Rebecca, Jenny Wrens!) darted about. The Kingfisher looking for a settled spot now the level has risen and its usual pools part of the torrent after recent rain. Across the Ouse on the two Bucks lakes at Cosgrove the avian visitors are now starting to arrive now the human ones have headed home for the winter. Most noticable were thirty plus Cormorant out on the water but Pochard numbers are building including one bright headed male that may (or may not) have been a possible Red Crested though it was just out of range for a 100% definite ID. Small numbers of Tufted Duck and half a dozen Great Crested Grebe.

Away from the water singles of the trio of the most common birds of prey, Common Buzzard, Sparrowhawk and Kestrel hunted around the site while a good number of both Fieldfare and Redwing picked at the berry laden hedgerows.

And to cap the day a Spitfire flew over west as the light began to go. Rather apt given what week it is.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Cosgrove Park

Something I forgot to mention earlier. Now the summer season is over at Cosgrove Park the main lakes will be 'Caravanless' again now until Easter and therefore quiet and always worth a look especially for wildfowl over the winter. For you listers the clear lakes, i.e. those that have no caravans around them, are east of the River Tove so still in Bucks and are probably some of the most underwatched stretches of water in the county. Viewable easily from the riverside (Ouse) walk or scopable from the Ridge.

Saturday 6th November 2010

12:00 > 12:30
Sun, N breeze, 10c.

A walk through the valley en route to the pub in Stony and a new bird to add to the site list. Walking down the approach road the unmistable sound of a cronking (more like honking) Raven in flight overhead heading north. Not much else about, a lone Little Egret, one hundred or so Lapwing, the same number of gulls, a 70/30ish mix of Black Headed and Common Gull whilst along the River Ouse a Kingfisher darted about and a Grey Wagtail picked about at the waters edge along the 'rapids' by Pebble Beach.