Posts Tagged ‘Coot’

Some more photos from my trip to Norfolk at the weekend

Tree Sparrow

Tree Sparrow

 

Pochard

Pochard

 

Moorhen

Moorhen

 

Coot

Coot

 

Goldfinches

Goldfinches

 

Whooper Swans

Whooper Swans

 

Mute Swans

Mute Swans

Greenwich Peninsular Ecology Park

Greenwich Peninsular Ecology Park

Popped into Greenwich Peninsular ecology park for an hour this morning. One of the volunteers diredted me to the Alder Carr as there was a large party of Siskin feeding in the Alders, This small finch is not common locally and so it was good to see such large party actively moving through the trees. Good views but unfortunately no good photos.

Siskin  Photo by Tony Smith (https://www.flickr.com/photos/pc_plod/)

Eurasian Siskin
Photo by Tony Smith (https://www.flickr.com/photos/pc_plod/)

 

Elsewhere on the reserve there were lots of Goldfinches together with a few chaffinches and Greenfinches but the lake was very quiet. In fact there was only a single Coot.

Tarn Park

Tarn Park

Tarn Park

Tarn Park

On the way home detour via the Tarn for my first visit this year. It is good to see no algal bloom on the water – I hope that is permanent and that it doesn’t return. Certainly encouraging were the count of 12 Moorhens and 10 Coot which are my highest winter counts for a number of years.

Moorhen

Common Moorhen

 

Eurasian Coot

Eurasian Coot

 

Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Rose-ringed Parakeet [sp] (Psittacula krameri)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Pied Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla alba)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
Eurasian Siskin (Carduelis spinus)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)

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I have been putting off the weekly survey walk around the Tarn in the hope that I might get a warm still day. Well that sort of plan usually goes astray and as the survey week, which runs Wednesday to Tuesday, comes to an end I have to take what I get, which is a sunny day coupled with a 25mph westerly wind!

There was plenty of activity on the Tarn as the Geese stake out their territories with much hissing and squarking at anyone who ventures too close to the chosen spot. The Canada -Greylag pair were engaging in some courtship dancing which involved a lot of neck waggling.

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A Terrapin was sunning itself on an island. I think it is a Cooter species, possibly one of the Red-bellied Cooters. I really must see if I can get a firm ID on it this year.

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The Little Grebe, seen last week, was not to be seen but many of the residents were present including 3 Tufted Duck, the highest count here for some months.

Coot

Coot

Spring though is moving on. Many of the daffodils seem to have already passed their peak and other flowers are just emerging to brighten up the walk.

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No butterflies, bees or dragonflies yet but hopefully in the next few weeks we should start to see them appearing.

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Muscovy Duck (Cairina moschata)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Rose-ringed Parakeet [sp] (Psittacula krameri)
European Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)

After Keith and I have finished the tour at Lord’s we walk the short distance to Regents Park.

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In the enclosure we see a Male Scaup which seems intent on following a male Smew wherever it goes. This is most strange behavior and I have certainly never seen anything like it before.

Smew and Scaup

Scaup and Smew

We stop to see a young Grey Heron trying to eat a frog it has found in the water margins. Eventually it figures out how to swallow it.

Grey Heron

Grey Heron

On the Lake there is a large raft of Coot.

Coot

Coot

There are plenty of Canada, Greylag and Egyptian Geese either on the lake or grazing on the lawns.

Egyptian Goose

Egyptian Goose

Canada Goose

Canada Goose

Just before we leave the park we pass the Heronry and can see that a few pairs of Grey Herons are already occupying nests

Heronry

Heronry

Grey Heron

Grey Heron

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus 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)
Rose-ringed Parakeet [sp] (Psittacula krameri)
European Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)

Off this morning to Staines Reservoir in West London

Staines Reservoir looking north to Heathrow Airport

Staines Reservoir looking north to Heathrow Airport


This seems to have been a magnet for wintering species this past week with a number of rare wintering species for London turning up. Staines reservoir is actually two large reservoirs separated by a causeway which runs between them. On arrival I am quickly put onto the Great Northern Diver a long way out on the northern basin and although over the course of the morning it was to come closer to the causeway it was never close enough to photograph unlike the one seen here in Feb 2013 which was very close to us.
Great Northern Diver (Staines Feb 2013)

Great Northern Diver (Staines Feb 2013)

Further along the causeway I stop to chat to another birdwatcher and we look for a male Red-Breasted Merganser that was seen earlier this morning. After 10 minutes of searching we locate it and are able to put others onto it using Terminal 5 at Heathrow airport as a usual location marker for its position on the water.

Red-Breasted Merganser
Red-breasted Merganser (male)
Photo by Steven Severinghaus (https://www.flickr.com/photos/horsepunchkid/)

At the western end of the causeway there are 2 Black-Necked Grebes which are present with 2 Little Grebes allowing a nice comparison of these 2 small Grebe species, but alas no good photographs could be got of them.

Black-necked Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis) ♀
Black-necked Grebe in winter plumage
Photo by Ian White (https://www.flickr.com/photos/ian_white/)

Apart from these star species there are a selection of winter ducks together with Coot and a number of Pied Wagtails.

Coot

Coot

Pied wagtail

Pied wagtail

Wigeon

Wigeon

Goldeneye

Goldeneye

A great mornings birdwatching with some good, if distant views of three rare wintering species for London.

Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Goldeneye [sp] (Bucephala clangula)
Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator)
Great Northern Loon (Gavia immer)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Black-necked Grebe [sp] (Podiceps nigricollis)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
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 Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
Meadow Pipit [sp] (Anthus pratensis)

A bright sunny morning and I set out to join a RSPB walk at Footscray Meadows, but encounter problems with transport and so running late decide to divert to have a look at a site nearer home , which I have been meaning to give a look over.

Lamorbey Park in Sidcup is a woodland park around a large lake.

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A pleasant stroll along the southern edge of the lake revealed some Canada and Egyptian Geese plus Mallard, Coot and Moorhens.

Egyptian Goose

Egyptian Goose

Canada Goose

Canada Goose

Moorhen

Moorhen

Coot

Coot

Robins along with Blue and Great Tits plus a single Long-tailed Tit flitted in the lakeside trees. In the Parkland a single Mistle Thrush was a pleasant sight. It was suprising to see a Speckled Wood and a Red Admiral butterfly enjoyng the late October sun. The bird list was not extensive but it was a very pleasant morning walk and I will certainly want to return in the summer to look at what dragonflies can be recorded here.

Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Rose-ringed Parakeet [sp] (Psittacula krameri)
Eurasian Jay [sp] (Garrulus glandarius)
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)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Mistle Thrush [sp] (Turdus viscivorus)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)

Red Admiral (Vanessa atalanta)
Speckled Wood [sp] (Pararge aegeria)

A lovely afternoon and so I decided to take a walk around the Tarn.

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Stopping first at the small pool there is lots of activity with Azure damselflies and a few Large Red damselflies.

Large Red Damselfly

Large Red Damselfly

Large Red Damselfly

Large Red Damselfly

Azure damselfly

Azure damselfly

Azure damselfly

Azure damselfly

Moving on to the main lake I can see a large dragonfly patrolling the central area. I wonder if it is an Emperor Dragonfly (annual at this site) but there is something about it which does seem right. Moving up the side I find a Broad-Bodied Chaser perched on sticks in the water.This is a first site record for me.

Black-Tailed Skimmer

Broad-Bodied Chaser

Black-tailed Skimmer

Broad-Bodied Chaser

At the eastern end I do find an Emperor patrolling, ever active – so unable to get any photos.

In contrast to the dragonflies, the butterflies have been disappointing with only a single unidentified Brown and a single speckled Wood to this point.

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Returning to the small pool, I stop by the adjacent wildflower garden and my eyes are immediately drawn to a orange brown butterfly on a plant head. I take some record photos as I am really not sure of its ID. I think it might be a Skipper but which one I am not sure. (On returning home I consult my guides and plump for Large Skipper, which is confirmed by posting picture on UK Butterflies facebook site). Its a first record for me on the site and my first Large Skipper locally.

Large Skipper

Large Skipper

Birdwise, there is a new coot family of 3 chicks and the Greylag geese are growing up fast.

Coot with Young

Coot with Young

Greylag Goose

Greylag Goose

Our resident terrapin was also present sunning himself on his usual sun-bed!

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Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Rose-ringed Parakeet [sp] (Psittacula krameri)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)

Speckled Wood [sp] (Pararge aegeria)
Large Skipper [sp] (Ochlodes venatus)

Blue-tailed Damselfly (Ischnura elegans)
Azure Damselfly (Coenagrion puella)
Large Red Damselfly (Pyrrhosoma nymphula)
Emperor Dragonfly (Anax imperator)
Broad-bodied Chaser (Libellula depressa) 1

The council have decided that it is now safe for people to visit the Tarn again after the recent bad weather and flooding. It is still very slippery and they have posted notices warning about the dangers of being too close to the edge of the Lake.

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It was fairly quiet on my first visit of 2014 with only a few birds present. It will take a few visits to judge if the weather has affected the populations here. It was good to be able to get back and take stock of this important area in my patch.

Canada Goose

Canada Goose

Coot

Coot

Tufted Duck

Tufted Duck

However some species had already turned their minds to the coming spring. This Ring-necked Parakeet inspecting a prospective nest hole

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The female Blackcap continues to put in appearances at the feeder but it is now 6 weeks since I last saw the Male, so he may not have survived the bad weather. It is only in recent years that this warbler has begun to winter in the UK in increasing numbers and so may be more vulnerable to extremes in weather.

Blackcap (Female)

Blackcap (Female)

Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)<
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Rose-ringed Parakeet [sp] (Psittacula krameri)
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)
Eurasian Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)

Bird Pictures: Coot

Posted: March 22, 2013 in Birds, Natural History
Tags: , ,

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