Sunday, 5 April 2015

WELFORD 05-05-2015-THE RECORD SHOT RETURNS

Well I spotted last night on the local reports that some Avocet were at nearby Clifford Hill gravel pits. Figuring they're heading towards the east coast my original plan was to go up to Summer Leys in the hope they'd drop in on their easterly journey. But I'm not sure why but when I got up this morning and got to the car my gut kept telling my to go Welford. Maybe it was the fact it was cloudy and no wind, which would make the surface as calm as a mill pond, or was it the activity of the Ospreys at nearby Rutland water. Secretly I was gagging to see my favourites, the Swallow and House Martins. So off I went.....
Now normally I can be found sat on the dam of  Welford Reservoir (skillfully labelled 'B') its in the bottom left of the frame, good for Common Terns, when they arrive House Martins and Swallows and a variety of waders and Wagtails. However the water levels are extremely high at the moment, no waders and just Greywagtail in the overflow. I spied a local fishermen I know by face sadly not name, exchanged pleasantries and swapped "what we seen". He mentioned an Osprey which is becoming regular. So I wandered off along the side adjacent to Naesby  Road, a couple of Chiff-Chaff,  Little Grebe and a Kingfisher lifted my spirits but it was apart from the numerous Tufted Ducks very quiet. I got to the dam separating Welford and Sulby reservoir (skillfully labelled 'A'). I spotted my first solitary Swallow :-( and was going to turn around but stopped for a mandatory cigarette break, glad I did. First a low flyby Buzzard then a few seconds later an Osprey. I apologise for the quality.


 It flew in over the fields onto Sulby, over the dam onto Welford done a circuit of Welford back over the dam onto Sulby right in front of me and quite low. Bugger the grey skies, I wish they were blue but without a hide I'm never going to get a close encounter like that too often , I looked over to the fishermen I'd been talking too, he gave a "first pump" universally accepted as the international hand signal for "YES/GET IN" I was the same and it's not my first encounter here as regular readers will know. Yet each time I see an Osprey here it still gets me excited. God they're impressive in the air.
I hung around for a few hours incase it came back, it didn't.
But before heading for home a bird circling Sulby looking for somewhere to land caught my eye. It circled past and over the farm towards Naesby Road, never landing on the reservoir....80% certain it didn't land I had a thorough look for it yet found nothing but Tufted Ducks and Gadwall, another record shot, sorry: Pintail
Now on Sulby I've had at the furthest end (right hand side of posted map/image) in the winter you get good numbers of Teal, Goldeneye, Goosander and Tufted Ducks but I've never had Pintail until today. Perhaps it's been here all winter, I didn't get to the reservoirs at all this winter, so can't say. But was a bonus bird.

11 comments:

  1. Yes Osprey and Pintail were 2 good birds to see and shot.

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  2. Welford & Sulby, I know them both very well Doug, I've fished/walked around them on many occasions. However, I've never managed an Osprey there, well done! I had similar thoughts to yourself over the weekend with two separate visits to Saddington Reservoir hoping for Osprey, no luck but I'll keep popping back over the next few weeks as it does have a bit of history with this species.

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    1. Eyebrooke judging from Twitter last night looks good too. They still fish on Welford but a dispute been no fishing on Sulby now which in turn means that narrow walk way is really getting hard to navigate round these days.

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  3. An excellent Osprey. I have never seen one.

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    1. You're in good place to see one Adrian, RSPB Loch Garten hosts them regularly, when they dive for fish it's truly breathtaking.

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  4. You managed better shots of an Osprey yesterday than I did, Doug. Was over Rutland way and just got very distant views of Rutland Osprey 30(05) (catchy name, that!) recognisable by the satellite wire hanging down. Should've gone to Rutland Water itself - or maybe Specsavers! I reckon I'm going to treat myself to a session at Horn Mill Trout Farm later this year. Could be £60 well spent!

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    1. I heard the trout farm is good, but also understand you have to be in the hide really, really early. Still it's a great way for a commercial business to be involved with nature and Ospreys.

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  5. Great diary of a '' day out '' birding Douglas ...... you never know what's going to appear over the horizon and you never will sitting at home in the lounge .... great narrative !.

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    1. Very true John but my enforced lounge lizard days should touch on wood be over and just in time but the signs of things turning up.

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