Moore Nature Reserve 22.03.2016

Overcast grey day with little or no breeze

The first outing in official Springtime and a good turnout of eager birders was greeted by  disappointingly un-Spring like weather. Undaunted and encouraged by a jay whipping past the car park, the group set off for the Lapwing Lane Hide overlooking Lapwing Lake. Alas no lapwings but welcome sightings of mallard, tufted duck, Canada geese, little grebe and a female goldeneye on the lake and on the far bank mute swans and a grey heron. Some eagle eyes spotted a cormorant within the far trees.

Northward along Lapwing Lane into the woodland in the hope of spotting woodpeckers, but only a lucky few sighted a greater spotted woodpecker moving restlessly between far trees. On to the Feeding Station Hide and the group were welcomed by a good showing of titmice – blue, great, long-tailed and coal – and a reed bunting all taking advantage of the food on offer. And again a lucky few glimpsed a greater spotted woodpecker rapidly flying through the treetops.

A walk back through Middle Moss Wood to view the favourite haunt of owls was unrewarded despite careful examination of the ivy-covered trees. So a fast march onward to the eastern extremity of the reserve to see what the Eastern Reedbed would reveal. And at the Phoenix Hide the group were amply rewarded not just by the usual welcome sightings of mallard, teal, tufted duck, gadwall, coot and a few lesser black-backed and herring gulls but by the sudden and prolonged appearance of a kingfisher on the bank near to the hide. Resplendent in its bright blue and orange plumage it put on a dazzling display of diving for fish for lunch with showy pauses perched on reeds and stumps to allow for applause from the assembled audience! In addition the group could observe a heronry being established within the trees to the north of the lagoon with at least three herons already settled on their large nests. And our visit was in itself closely observed by a friendly robin perched above the hide wall, perhaps a little disgruntled at being disturbed from feeding on seeds laid out within the hide.

A slow amble back along the track to the car park enabled viewings of Pump House Pool and Birchwood Pool. As with all the expanses of water at the reserve, water levels were extremely high which meant that there was a dearth of waders. Nevertheless both pools revealed a mix of gulls in generous (and noisy) numbers, coot, moorhen, gadwall, teal, tufted duck, shoveller and some lovely sightings of little grebe.

Bird List (BP)

  1. Little Grebe
  2. Great- Crested Grebe
  3. Cormorant
  4. Grey Heron
  5. Mute Swan
  6. Canada Goose
  7. Gadwall
  8. Teal
  9. Mallard
  10. Shoveler
  11. Tufted Duck
  12. Goldeneye
  13. Buzzard
  14. Kestrel
  15. Pheasant
  16. Moorhen
  17. Coot
  18. Herring Gull
  19. Lesser Black-backed Gull
  20. Black-headed Gull
  21. Great Spotted Woodpecker
  22. Feral Pigeon
  23. Wood Pigeon
  24. Kingfisher
  25. Wren
  26. Blackbird
  27. Robin
  28. Long-tailed Tit
  29. Coal Tit
  30. Great Tit
  31. Blue Tit
  32. Nuthatch
  33. Jay
  34. Magpie
  35. Rook
  36. Carrion Crow
  37. Chaffinch
  38. Goldfinch
  39. Reed Bunting

Photos by JH


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