Monday, 29 November 2010

The Freeze Starts to Bite

It does not get any warmer and there are signs that the cold is beginning to result in some significant movement of birds. I noted last week that there were remarkable numbers of goosander coming into roost on Ibsley Water and this was before it had really got cold. Things have moved on apace, with 114 being seen on Saturday evening and an extraordinary 160 on Sunday evening. I will try to get a count this week if I can, who knows how many there might be by the time this cold spell comes to and end.

Other signs of cold weather movement were 255 teal on Ivy Lake today and this evening at least 300 common gull coming into roost on Iblsey Water. At the same time the reduction in numbers of lesser black-backed gull coming to roost probably indicates that some have moved on.

Activity at the feeders has picked up with siskin and goldfinch regular on the nyger feeders and good numbers of chaffinch and a few brambling at the ground food.

Other birds today included a dunlin on Ibsley Water and a green sandpiper on Ivy Lake. The greylag were grazing the western shore of Ibsley Water and were joined by about 200 wigeon. This was especially pleasing to see as we spent a couple of days cutting this area to make it more suitable for grazing wildfowl back in the autumn.

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