I have not been at work for a few days, but I have been trying to keep up with reports from Blashford and there have been a few very notable sightings and one local "Mega".
At the weekend a pink-footed goose was reported, the bird was thought to have been a juvenile, if so it is not the bird seen about three weeks or so before as I think that was an adult. If it was a juvenile it is probably more likely to stay around having found the greylag flock. Unlike an adult which will be trying to go to a place it knows, a juvenile would have been relying on parental knowledge to get it to the wintering grounds. Thus a displaced adult will be able to reorientate, a juvenile will not have so many resources and may stay lost all winter.
Yesterday confirmation came of the starling roost on Ivy Lake once again. They make a great sight, especially from the northern screen on the east side of the lake beside the Rockford path. From there the wheeling flock can be seen against the setting sun. The flock was being attacked by both sparrowhawk and peregrine, adding to the drama. In addition there seem to be more water rail this winter and they call particularly at dusk, adding to the experience.
However none of these constitute a "Mega", that came in the form of a bearded tit, heard and briefly seen at dusk over the reeds near the Ivy North hide. This is certainly the first record for many years and a great addition to our BTO Birds in Business Challenge total.
I am putting together the species lists for the challenge by month at the moment, I will post them soon. If anyone can add any species or records for any months I would be delighted to hear. Hopefully they will also act as a guide to the species that can be seen month by month at Balshford.