Thursday, 4 January 2018

`White Nun`

Lade - mild, rain clearing to sunshine, sw 6 - Another good old dollop of overnight rain left all the roads and tracks hereabouts well and truly flooded; and there I was moaning about the drought a month ago! However, by late morning the rain cleared away to allow a very tasty couple of hours birding on the local patch.
  The first Smew of the winter was the main prize, and joy upon joy it was a lone drake freshly arrived and moving all over the site, as is their want. Initially seen by visiting birders earlier on south lake, I eventually tracked it down sheltering from the tempest in a back channel reedbed near the swing bridge. The beauty of a `white nun` within the wildfowl tribe is unsurpassed, a truly stunning beast and a fine example of Mother Nature pulling out all the stops. "Its only a white and black duck", I hear you say, but the white bits shine like a beacon on a dull day, and as for those vermiculations on the flanks, well...


                                Drake Smew, first of the winter

  Despite the howling gale the Long-tailed Duck seemed undaunted as it fished the far side of south lake alongside a dozen Goldeneyes, while the Slavonian Grebe sought the calmer waters of north lake. Also noted this morning around the willow swamp, Marsh Harrier, Kingfisher, Water Rail, Sparrowhawk, Cetti`s Warbler, Goldcrest and a noticeable increase in Chaffinches.
  On the bird reserve today the Black-throated Diver was reported on ARC, along with a pair of Goosanders, while the Glaucous Gull was seen again on Burrowes.

3 comments:

  1. Hi Paul glad you re-located the Smew, i was one of the visiting birders this morning , is it possible to use one of your Smew photos on my blog please (Robs Birding Blog) , of course i will credit it to you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Rob, glad you saw the Smew, and of course please use any of the pics. All the best, Paul.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Many thanks Paul , much appreciated.

      Delete