Thursday, 22 August 2013



A run along the Brampton Valley Way this morning between Merry Tom Lane and Hanging Houghton failed to locate any specific birds of interest, so off I went to Harrington Airfield (again).  A Marsh Harrier was again present as were two Turtle Doves which showed particularly well.  Six Crossbills flew over in a westerly direction.

Later in the day and a visit to Pitsford Res was memorable due to the exploits and proximity of a fishing Osprey.  This adult bird, seemingly without rings, flew a couple of lengths of the big side between the causeway and the dam at about 1.55pm before splashing in to the water unsuccessfully in the Pintail Bay.  It then came flying down the reservoir and dived in to the water only about a 100 metres away next the gorse bushes and in very close proximity to a fishing boat, to the surprise and exclamation of the two occupants!

The Osprey then rested on the water's surface with wings extended for quite a period to the point that I was becoming a little concerned.  One of the fishermen had time to find his camera and take some images!  With much labour, the avian fisher then attempted to rise from the water with an impossibly huge fish.  On the third attempt the fish was pulled from the water but after rising to only about two feet from the surface, it was clear that the fish was just too heavy and it was released with a big splash!

The bird then disappeared off in a northerly direction, only to re-appear at 2.55pm and again seemingly to go fishing south of the causeway.

A Goldeneye and a Garganey were present near to the Maytrees Hide.

Late this afternoon there were four Whinchats in the southern-most field of Blueberry Farm next to the Cottesbrooke/Hanging Houghton track.


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