Friday, February 12, 2010

One of those days

We've already talked on here about how the hard winter has affected birds (our March issue will contain more on the same theme), and it shows no sign of changing.

I had the day off yesterday, and although there was the odd wintry shower early on, things brightened up by the afternoon. I thought I'd head over to a rather nondescript field where, in the past, I've found Jack Snipe, but although it still looks perfect for them (boggy, with lots of tussocky grass), there was no sign. I did see a Kingfisher flash down the nearby stream, though.

So, it was on to Kelham Bridge, a former sewage works that's now a Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust reserve. It's my favourite local site, but I've neglected it a bit recently. Next to the first hide, there are a few feeders, and as I settled into my seat I did a double-take - underneath them, a Water Rail was pecking away at the fallen seed, along with a few Moorhens, Dunncoks and Robins. Now I hear the Water Rails squealing away here quite often, but to get such great, unobstructed views was amazing.

On the feeders themselves, there was a mass of Great Tits and Blue Tits, plus the bizarre sight of a Moorhen trying to climb out along one of the branches to get to the feeders (or possibly the tits - Moorhens can be voracious and none-too-fussy eaters). One of those days, as it turned out, to learn something new about birds you think of as familiar.

1 comment:

Crafty Green Poet said...

I've seen a moorhen in a tree recently too. Once saw a kingfisher at a birdfeeder in a garden by a canal