(header while this post is current :- view over Melbourne Pool)
Herewith, a short account of a few days in the second half of November. The weather was not so good during this period, but I did manage one short excursion.
Saturday, 19th November Garden
This day was quite remarkable, in that we had a visit to the garden by a Pied Wagtail. In UK, Pied Wagtail is far more common than Grey Wagtail. However, although we get sightings of Grey Wagtail in the garden most years, Pied Wagtail has not been seen on an annual basis. Grey Wagtail was here that day also, but not photographed
|Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii) (female) - garden on 19th November, 2022|
|Robin (Erithacus rubecula) - garden on 19th November, 2022|
An embarassing situation unfolded this day. I was sitting in my study when a dark shape passing overhead momentarily blotted out the daylight A Grey Heron had flown over and landed on the apex of the roof of the bungalow behind our back garden. The view from my study was partially obscured by the Sambucus on our boundary, so I grabbed the camera and rushed upstairs to our bedroom for a better view, calling to Lindsay as I did so as I knew she'd want to see the bird.
I was busy taking photos when Lindsay alerted me to the lady in the bungalow on whose roof the heron was perched. She was looking very concerned at me with my big lens, and pointedly pulled across the blinds to her window. I ended up going round to the bungalow to apologise for any concerns and took a photo of the heron to leave with them and assure them that I was not spying on them. I shall be more careful in future!
|Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea) - from our bedroom window on 20th November, 2022|
Another dull day, but we were visited by Grey Wagtail once more.
|Grey Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea) - garden on 22nd November, 2022|
|Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis) - garden on 22nd November, 2022|
I was determined to go out this day, and settled on an afternoon visit to Melbourne Pool, in the south of Derbyshire. Although my home county is Leicestershire, Melbourne (with its attractive pool) is closer to my home than most of Leicestershire's avian hotspots.
I have recently installed a new bird feeder, close to the kitchen window, as Lindsay had been saying for a while that she'd like somewhere close to hand where she could put bird-friendly food scraps, rather than put them in the refuse bin. This has been a great success, primarily in attracting Magpies and is tending to take them away from the other garden feeders where they disturb the smaller birds. Here's one of the Magpies, just arriving in the Rowan, prior to coming down for its breakfast.
|Magpie (Pica pica) - garden on 23rd November, 2022|
Nothing was interesting enough to make me raise my camera until I had passed by the outlet weir and started out on the grass path round the pool. Here I found a drake Pochard (sadly, not Red-crested!).
|Pochard (Aythya ferina) (male) - Melbourne Pool|
|Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) (male) - Melbourne Pool|
|Mute Swan (Cygnus olor) (immature) - Melbourne Pool|
|Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) - Melbourne Pool|
|Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula) (female) - Melbourne Pool|
|Coot (Fulica atra) - Melbourne Pool|
|Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus) - Melbourne Pool|
|Great Crested Grebe (Podiceps cristatus) - Melbourne Pool|
|Staunton Harold Reservoir - on 23rd November, 2022|
|Platform with Cormorants ((Phalacrocorax carbo) and Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea) - Staunton Harold Reservoir|
|Painter's Mussel (Unio pictorum) - Staunton Harold Reservoir|