Naturelog: Tuesday 11th March

Posted: March 12, 2014 in Birds, Insects, Natural History
Tags: , , , ,

A last minute decision to pay a visit to the London Wetland Centre. There had been some butterflies sighted over the weekend and I was keen to see if they were still around. Unfortunately the warm sunny conditions of the past 3 days were replaced by cool overcast ones and so the prospect of early spring insects was not good. But then there is always the birds at this excellent reserve.

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My first stop was the wildlife garden, but there was no sign of any insects there.

Bug hotel in the Wildlife Garden

Bug hotel in the Wildlife Garden

So onto the hides. The usual waterbirds and Gulls are present although it seems as though the Bitterns have left for their breeding sites as they haven’t been seen for a week or so. The most interesting sighting was a male Sparrowhawk which appeared from a hedge and appeared to try to take something from off of the lakes surface (A behavior that none of us watching had sen before). It was immediately set on by a large flock of Crows which drove it back into the hedge. The Crows all perched on the trees tops surrounding it almost as though daring it to come out again. After a few minutes it flew out and using its superior flight skills evaded its pursuers and flew off to the other side of the reed-bed.

Sparrowhawk hiding in hedge to evade Crows

Sparrowhawk hiding in hedge to evade Crows

Otherwise it seemed generally quiet although some birds like this Coot had obviously begun building a nest.

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Little Grebe

Little Grebe

Ring necked Parakeets

Ring necked Parakeets

Finally as the afternoon was drawing to the close, the sun decided to break through and I saw my first (and only) insect of the day, a single White-tailed Bumblebee.

Despite seeming quite, I still managed to record 40 species of bird on the reserve, so a good days birding.

Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Eurasian Teal [sp] (Anas crecca)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Common Redshank [sp] (Tringa totanus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Mew Gull [sp] (Larus canus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Rose-ringed Parakeet [sp] (Psittacula krameri)
Great Spotted Woodpecker [sp] (Dendrocopos major)
European Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Cetti’s Warbler [sp] (Cettia cetti)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)

White-tailed bumblebee (Bombus lucorum)

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