Posts Tagged ‘Blashford Lakes’

Day one of our 2020 trip to Dorset saw us travelling down from London to Weymouth. We stooped off at Blashford Lakes in Hampshire for a couple of hours in the afternoon and although we didn’t record a large number of species, we did see some good ones.

Arriving at the reserve we went straight to Tern hide and were soon watching a distant Long-tailed Duck, a species which is more commonly found on the coast. Also present were 6 Common Goldeneye and 2 Goosander and large numbers of Eurasian Wigeon, Northern Pintail and Gadwall plus smaller groups of Northern Shoveler, Mallard, Tufted Ducks and Common Pochard.

Goosander
Photo by Damian Walmsley (https://www.flickr.com/photos/damienwalmsley/)

The Woodland hide was quite quiet with only Great Tit, Blue Tit, Robin and Goldfinch present. Elsewhere on the reserve we also saw Chaffinch, Blackbird, Dunnock and Long-tailed Tit.

After a couple of hours, it was time to recommence our journey west, but an excellent start to our trip.

Naturelog 12 January

Posted: January 21, 2019 in Birds, Natural History
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As we did last year Sue and I started the year off with a week in Weymouth in Dorset. On the way from London, we stopped off at Blashford Lakes in Hampshire. This gem of a reserve we discovered for the first time on the way home from Dorset last year.

Our first stop was Ibsey water but apart from a party of Linnets, a Little Grebe and some distant gulls, most of which seemed to be Lesser Black-backed and Herring gulls there was not a lot to be seen.

We then went to the Woodland hide, where a number of species were attending the feeder station. Unfortunately, unlike last year, there were no Brambling or Bullfinches. However, a stunning male Siskin and a Coal Tit did oblige us.

Finally, we went to Ivy South Hide. Here we looked over one of the large lakes with its Cormorant roosting tree. A Great White Egret flew into the reeds at the edge but there was no sign of the Bittern which had been seen earlier in the afternoon.

Cormorant roosting tree
Great White Egret

We then spent some time looking for a Yellow-Browed Warbler, once a rare passage migrant, but now a few are wintering in the UK. On this occasion I wasn’t successful, but there are other opportunities as there are two birds wintering in Weymouth, one on each of the town’s RSPB reserves.

Time was getting on and we needed to continue on our journey so we had to leave Blashford and continue our journey.

Red-breasted Goose (Branta ruficollis)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Merganser [sp] (Mergus merganser)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Great Egret [sp] (Ardea alba)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Red Kite [sp] (Milvus milvus)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Great Spotted Woodpecker [sp] (Dendrocopos major)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Coal Tit [sp] (Periparus ater)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Goldcrest [sp] (Regulus regulus)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Eurasian Nuthatch [sp] (Sitta europaea)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
Common Linnet [sp] (Linaria cannabina)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Eurasian Siskin (Spinus spinus)
Common Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

On our way home from Weymouth, Sue and I made a lunchtime stop at Blashford Lakes Nature Reserve, near Ringwood in Hampshire. I had never been to this reserve before, in fact, I had never heard of it till a couple of days ago. Which is quite a surprise when I read what was on offer here. The evening Gull roost (which as lunchtime visitors we did not see) presently includes 5 rarer Gull species. The stars are 2 American Gulls, Thayer’s Gull and Ring-Billed Gull along with Caspian Gull, Iceland Gull and Yellow-legged Gull together with thousands of the commoner Gull species.

DSCN8828-49

Anyway, we were too early for roosting Gulls but we started on Ibsey Lake where there was an amazing 40 Goosander on the far bank along with 15 Pintail and a single Pink-footed Goose. Out on the lake were a few Goldeneye together with Common Pochard and Tufted Duck.

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Goosanders. Photo by Sergey Yeliseev (https://www.flickr.com/photos/yeliseev/)

Our next stop was the Woodland hide where we were treated to a wonderful display of woodland birds including some beautiful Siskin and Brambling along with Chaffinch, Dunnock, Long-tailed Tits, Nuthatch, Great and Blue Tits.

Brambling

Siskin (left), Wigeon (top right) and Deer (bottom right)

On the way back to the car park, we were directed to a spot where we could see a Great White Egret and Little Egret resting in the reed-bed and then were treated to a rather confiding deer (probably a Fallow Deer) which fed quite happily as we watched it from the path

This was a short visit but I would really like to visit again and spend a lot more time exploring this wonderful reserve.

Pink-footed Goose (Anser brachyrhynchus)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Pintail (Anas acuta)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Goldeneye [sp] (Bucephala clangula)
Goosander / Common Merganser [sp] (Mergus merganser)
Great Egret [sp] (Ardea alba)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Eurasian Nuthatch [sp] (Sitta europaea)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
Brambling (Fringilla montifringilla)
Eurasian Siskin (Carduelis spinus)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)