Wednesday, 1 February 2012

01 February 2012

A cold but pleasant morning around Westport, although the temp was -1c it felt a bit warmer in the sunshine, probably helped by the fact there was only a very light E wind, visit from 07.45 til 09.30.

About 80% of the boating lake was frozen as were all the small pools in the nature reserve but all the main lake was ice free, on the boating lake there was just one Mute Swan with the usual 4 on the main lake, a small number of Black-headed Gulls were roosting on the ice.

Almost every morning as I've walked along the boating lake a Willow Tit has been calling from the small wood near Price's Field and it was there again this morning, I also had another by the top pool, a couple of Bullfinches were by the sidings and another couple by the top pool, on the main lake, 14 Pochard, just 28 Tufted Duck, 3 Goldeneye, 2 Great Crested Grebe and a couple of Common Gulls amongst the Black-headed Gulls.
In the nature reserve it was quite lively this morning with several Tit flocks going through which included, 4 Siskin, 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Jay, 2 Treecreeper, 3 Chaffinch, a single Greenfinch and 2 Coal Tit.
Below is a poor picture of one of the Treecreepers.

A Sparrowhawk also went through one of the Tit flocks and a Buzzard flew overhead, on the old gas works the Stock Doves have increased to 3 and on the old sewage works a Kestrel was sat on the telegraph pole, this is my first this year at Westport, as shown in another poor picture below!

Just a quick look back into January, it's hasn't exactly been a barn storming month with just 59 species recorded, 6 down on 2010 and a massive 10 down on 2011.
Their have however been a few highlights, the biggie was the Iceland Gull which went through on the 21st, the first record at Westport since 2009, also 5 Pintail were present on the main lake for a few hours on the 11th, 5 Wigeon were on the main lake on the 5th, a distant flock of Golden Plover were the first to be recorded for a few years on the 11th, and a Green Woodpecker was a unusual find mid month, strange in that they normally hang around for a few weeks and months and not just a one day stay.

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