Posts Tagged ‘Egyptian Goose’

A short drive today brings us to Pensthorpe Nature Reserve. This is a private reserve founded by a local landowner and businessman Bill Jordon. It is part wildfowl collection; part conservation centre and part nature reserve. It is also the centre of a local partnership seeking to combine modern farming and good habitat for wildlife. It has a diverse range of habitats and our first stop is at the wader scrape, where there are a number of species of geese and other waterbirds.


From here we pass on into the woodland and from the hide, we have excellent views of Nuthatch, Coal Tit and Marsh Tit along with more common woodland birds.

Nuthatch and Great Tit

After stopping at the visitor centre for lunch we visit the wetland hide, where 2 Green Sandpipers and a female Goldeneye are the best birds to be seen.

Goldeneye (f) (top left), Little Grebe (bottom left), Moorhen (top right), Eurasian Teal (centre right) and Egyptian Goose (bottom right).

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Gadwall [sp] (Mareca strepera)
Eurasian Wigeon (Mareca penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Eurasian Teal (Anas crecca)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Goldeneye [sp] (Bucephala clangula)
Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Red Kite [sp] (Milvus milvus)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Common Snipe [sp] (Gallinago gallinago)
Green Sandpiper (Tringa ochropus)
Ivory Gull (Pagophila eburnea)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Mew Gull [sp] (Larus canus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Western Barn Owl [sp] (Tyto alba)
Peregrine Falcon [sp] (Falco peregrinus)
Eurasian Jay [sp] (Garrulus glandarius)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Coal Tit [sp] (Periparus ater)
Marsh Tit [sp] (Poecile palustris)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
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)

 

The Tarn

Spring is here and so a new recording season begins. Having had a break over the winter from any formalised recording it is time to begin again for Butterflies, Dragonflies and Bumblebees on my patch and for Birds at Eltham Park. So a bright March day saw me doing the first of my weekly walks around the Tarn.

An early surprise was a Stock Dove in the Garden as I set out to walk down to the Tarn. This is the first record for me on the patch and although I didn’t disturb it, the bird had disappeared by the time I returned. On the walk down to the Tarn, I recorded my first Butterfly of 2017 a Speckled Wood.

Arriving at the Tarn the usual residents were in evidence but as I walked around the lake there was little evidence of Butterfly activity. Apart from the overwintering species, the first emergers are usually the Orange-Tips and eventually, a pair flew past me at the east end of the lake.

Orange Tip (m). Photo by Tim Hodson (https://www.flickr.com/photos/informationtakesover/)

Tracking back up the south side and doing the wildfowl count whilst also looking out for butterflies I reached the sluice gate at the south-western end when a flash of iridescent blue sped away from me across the Lake – a Common Kingfisher – the first of the year – it must have been perched somewhere nearby in the bushes and took flight at my approach. As I left to make my way back home, a female Brimstone butterfly flew lazily across the path.

It’s been a while since I saw a Terrapin here, but this one was taking the opportunity to sun itself.

Egyptian Goose

Coot trying out a potential nest site

The Tarn

 

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Stock Dove [sp] (Columba oenas)
Rose-ringed Parakeet [sp] (Psittacula krameri)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)

Butterflies

Brimstone (Gonepteryx rhamni)

Speckled Wood [sp] (Pararge aegeria)

Orange Tip (Anthocharis cardamines)

 

A bright sunny morning and a chance to have a stroll around the Tarn. As I approached a bird flew across my path and headed out east along the water’s edge – A female Northern Wheatear, my second record for the site. Unfortunately, I was unable to relocate it and it probably continued out onto the adjoining golf course, a much more suitable habitat for this species.

 

There were a good number of geese present – 8 Canada Geese; 5 Greylag Geese;1 hybrid and 3 Egyptian Geese. It looks as though our Greylag – Canada pairing are back again together with one of their offspring.

Canada Goose

Greylag Goose

Egyptian Goose

Canada x Greylag Hybrid

There seems little evidence of nesting yet, although one Coot was gathering twigs. Interesting how sites vary, given that Keith and I had seen chicks at the Wetland Centre last Friday.

It was good to see the Tarn without its green covering and I hope that this will remain so over the summer months.

 

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Keith and I are back at the London Wetland Centre in search of the wintering Bitterns which have finally arrived from their breeding grounds on the continent. It is thought there are currently 2-3 of these secretive birds on the reserve and there have been daily sightings in the past few weeks. On arrival we can see that the cold weather has caused some of the smaller ponds to freeze and the waterbirds tread uneasily as it appears they are walking on water.

Eurasian Coot

Eurasian Coot

We make our way down the western arm as this is where the Bitterns have been most commonly seen. Whilst searching we find a Yellow-legged gull amongst a group of Herring and Lesser-Black-backed gulls. This southern European species is a winter visitor which is spreading north in its range. But alas no Bitterns.

Yellow-legged Gull. Photo by Francesco Veroesi. (https://www.flickr.com/photos/francesco_veronesi/)

Yellow-legged Gull. Photo by Francesco Veroesi. (https://www.flickr.com/photos/francesco_veronesi/)

Having drawn a blank we proceed to the eastern arm and in the first hide find another of our rarer wintering gulls, a juvenile Caspian Gull. This species breeds around the Caspian and Black seas and in Eastern Europe but is increasingly being seen in the UK. But still no Bittern!

Juvenile Caspian Gull. Photo by Keith

Juvenile Caspian Gull. Photo by Keith

Our day ends in the Tower hide, in the hope of a Bittern flying to roost, but alas we are not to be lucky today. They had been seen but never at the place /time that we were there – still there is always another day. A good day for gulls though with 7 species seen.

There is a Bittern in this reed-bed...... somewhere!

There is a Bittern in this reed-bed…… somewhere!

 

Green Woodpecker

Green Woodpecker

 

Egyptian Goose

Egyptian Goose

 

Northern Shoveler

Northern Shoveler

 

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Northern Pintail (Anas acuta)
Eurasian Teal [sp] (Anas crecca)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Water Rail [sp] (Rallus aquaticus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Common Snipe [sp] (Gallinago gallinago)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Caspian Gull (Larus cachinnans)
Yellow-legged Gull [sp] (Larus michahellis)
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)
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)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Mistle Thrush [sp] (Turdus viscivorus)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Common Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

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Having a couple of hours to spare after an appointment in central London and having the previous day failed to catch up with either Brown Hawker or Southern Hawker Dragonflies at London Wetland Centre, I decided to go for a walk around the lake in Regents Park to see if I could remedy this.

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As usual, the lake held its normal array of waterbirds, including 3 species of geese, all present in good numbers.

Egyptian Geese

Egyptian Geese

Greylag Goose

Greylag Goose

Canada Goose

Canada Goose

One surprise was to find Coot that were still nesting. I located 2 nests, one of which had young visible.

Nesting Coot

Nesting Coot

Young Coot

Young Coot

On the dragonfly front, I was not successful with only Common Darter being recorded.

Common Darter

Common Darter

 

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
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 Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)

Large White (Pieris brassicae)

Common Darter (Sympetrum striolatum)

Eye to Eye contact

Posted: November 24, 2015 in Birds, Natural History
Tags:

Who is going to blink first?

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This Egyptian Goose was determined to stare me out using a wall to make up for the height difference.

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Its been two weeks since I have done the butterfly and dragonfly survey on my patch, so I am keen to see what changes there may have been. It is a warm afternoon but there is a stiff breeze which is obviously not ideal.

The Garden draws a blank and so I set off towards the Tarn. As I reach the entrance a Peacock butterfly drifts across my path. Common Carder Bees and White-tailed Bees are actively feeding on the flowers. A Small White Butterfly flies across a patch of flowers, but along with another seen later in the walk that is to be the sum of the butterflies seen today.

It looks like it has been snowing but it is actually a fall of seeds from one of the trees.

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The Damselfly pool is looking in very poor state at the moment with almost no living pond vegetation. Still looking back over the last couple of years I have not had records till June from here so it is to be hoped that there will still be some live larvae to emerge in the coming weeks,

Mallard and Greylag Geese have both got young. I could only count 7 Greylag goslings (11 two weeks ago), but they are well tucked away so it may be that the remainder may just be out of view. Strangely the Canada Geese seem to be making no attempt at nesting although they are hanging around in pairs. The 2 Egyptian geese, which arrived about a month ago, are still present.

Mallard with young

Mallard with young

 

 

Egyptian Geese

Egyptian Geese

I find the resident Terrapin sunning himself on the retaining wall of one of the islands. Its been a few visits since I last saw him and I did wonder if he was still around.

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Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Muscovy Duck (Cairina moschata)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
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)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)

Small White (Artogeia rapae)
Peacock Butterfly (Inachis io)

A sunny warm afternoon for my weekly survey walk on the patch. Expectations high for some butterflies and other insects especially as I had seen an Orange-Tip butterfly whilst in Bromley earlier in the day.

DSCN6389a

Geese were present in good numbers and appeared to have settled disputes over territory (at least for the time being) with pairs of Greylag and Canada spaced around the edge of the Tarn and on the islands. At the golf course end my gaze was drawn to some geese at the far end of the Tarn, even more so when one flashed it wings and showed a huge patch of white. Through the binoculars I could make out that two of them were in fact Egyptian Geese (my first record here in 15 years).

Egyptian Goose

Egyptian Goose

There are two particularly good areas for insects on the walk and the first didn’t disappoint with 2 Common Carder-Bees and a Red-tailed Bee, but no butterflies.

,Common Carder Bee. Bombus pascorum. Queen
Common Carder Bee
Photo by Gail Hampshire (https://www.flickr.com/photos/gails_pictures/)

IMG_2067 Red-tailed Bumblebee (Bombus lapidarius)
Red-tailed Bee
Photo by Tony Morris (https://www.flickr.com/photos/tonymorris/)

The area around the damsel-fly pool also had a Red-tailed Bee. I lingered here as this is the prime spot for Orange-Tip on the site but still no sightings. Checking my records for last year the first was seen on April 1st so despite the mild winter things seem to be lingering no doubt because it has been quite cool until this week.

The addition of the Egyptian goose brings my site total to 67 species

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
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)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)

Common Carder Bee
Red-tailed Bee

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)

Sue and I are taking a long weekend break in Suffolk. On the way we stop off at Abberton reservoir a nature reserve run by the Essex Wildlife Trust. I remember when there was just a basic wooden hide here but now there is a visitors centre complete with café. How times change! But the cup of tea and sandwich were very welcome before we set off to the hide on the edge of the reservoir. As we walk over the grassland we are serenaded by a Skylark as it makes its ascending song flight before plunging back to its perch on a fence post.

Abberton reservoir

Abberton reservoir

Abberton Resrvoir

Abberton Resrvoir

The reservoir is vast but there is a good selection of geese close to the hide. Canada. Greylag and Egyptian are present although there is no sign of the small flock of White-Fronted Geese which had been present a few days earlier.

Canada Goose

Canada Goose

Egyptian goose

Egyptian goose

Greylag Goose

Greylag Goose

There is also a good selection of duck feeding on the edges of the reservoir. Eurasian Wigeon are the commonest species present, but out on the reservoir itself there are a few Goldeneye.

Eurasian Wigeon

Eurasian Wigeon

Goldeneye

Goldeneye [from archive]

Tucked in amongst the Wigeon we find a sleeping Pintail.

Drake Pintail sleeping amongst Eurasian Wigeon

Drake Pintail sleeping amongst Eurasian Wigeon

Black-headed gull

Black-headed gull

After walking back to the car park, again to the sound of the displaying Skylark its time to resume our journey to Suffolk.

Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Northern Pintail (Anas acuta)
Eurasian Teal [sp] (Anas crecca)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Goldeneye [sp] (Bucephala clangula)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Common Kestrel [sp] (Falco tinnunculus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Common Redshank [sp] (Tringa totanus)
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)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Pied Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla alba)