A complete Heslington Lake stock-check

Snow Goose

Last week I took a longer-than-usual walk round my lunchtime patch, with the aim of logging all the birds I saw in much greater detail. It was very instructive.

“You know what I wanna do? Strut”

For reasons that I suppose are mainly down to vanity, I always try to bump the circulation of many of these blogposts by promoting them on social media. It was after one such bit of shameless pushing of my wares that someone asked if I log all the sightings on the BTO’s BirdTrack. The truth is while I tend to log noteworthy sightings, I rarely make a decent survey. So I thought I should.

Snow Geese

In the spirit of honesty I should say that I didn’t have my binoculars with me so many smaller birds were missed. But it was interesting to learn just how many geese there are!

The Pochard gang

Most impressive was the way the Pochard numbers have become established. Only a month back I was saying how odd it was to see two. Now there are a dozen in a little gang, hanging around sunbathing on the same log every day.

Black Swan

The Black Swan has found temporary respite on a smaller lake, and the Mutes have moved on to bullying Snow Geese. They’ve also established their nest site and are busy building it.

Two-headed Mute Swan

There is plenty of nest-building and I’ve identified several Coot nests, a Moorhen nest, a Wren’s nest, and a Blue Tit nest. Plenty of others are singing and nest-building too, including the Nuthatches. So as the spring and summer progresses there should be plenty of baby birds around.

Coot nest

Moorhen on nest
Actually just above the Coot nest!

Of course, nothing compensates for the ongoing and now, presumably certain, absence of the Great-crested Grebes. Quite what made them fail in their mating attempts from a month or so back we cannot be sure, but the lake will not be the same without the humbug-striped grebe chicks.


The complete list:

Barnacle Goose 10

Blackbird 6

Female Blackbird

Black Swan 1

Balletic black velvet tutu

Blue Tit 3

Canada Goose 45

Carrion Crow 5

Crow. Floral dance.

Chaffinch 3

Chiffchaff 3

Coot 25

Dunnock 3

Goldcrest 1

Goldfinch 2

Great Tit 2

Greylag Goose 59

Long-tailed Tit 2

Mallard 39

Moorhen 22

Mute Swan 2

Nuthatch 1

Pochard 11

Robin 6

Snow Goose 27

Woodpigeon 25

Wren 2

 

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One Response to A complete Heslington Lake stock-check

  1. Pingback: 30 Days Wild – Day 12 – Goosed | Why watch wildlife?

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