Sunday, 20 September 2020

Ditchford WeBS count


I completed a WeBS count at Ditchford Pits today, starting west of Ditchford Lane where an adult male Peregrine was perched on pylons. Juvenile Woodpigeons perched next to him on the wires but he was clearly not hungry!

On a count which was busy with people wherever I went, wildlife was in pretty short supply but other birds west of Ditchford Lane included a Curlew and nine Egyptian Geese and a Kingfisher plus three Cetti's Warblers and a couple of Grey Wagtails.

The older pits east of Ditchford Lane didn't yield much that was significant, the Battle of Britain commemorative flight of a Hurricane leading a trio of Spitfires was the undoubted highlight!

The main pit between Irthlingborough and Higham Ferrers was busy with wildfowl, the shallow water and abundant water weed attracting 4 Pintail, 190 Gadwall, 50 Shovelers and 110 Wigeon. More Grey Wagtails, a couple of Kingfishers, a Hobby hawking dragonflies and small numbers of Siskins and Redpolls were the best of the rest! A Brown Hawker is very much at the end of their flight period.

Elsewhere and Gary Burrows was having a good time at Borough Hill Country Park this afternoon with finds of a Black Redstart, a Common Redstart, a Whinchat and at least nine Stonechats! Four more Stonechats were watched in the Brampton Valley below Hanging Houghton by Jonathan.

Stanwick Pits today was still hanging on to nine Cattle Egrets plus a Great White Egret, five Pintail and a Ringed Plover and the Peregrine was atop St Mary's church again in Higham Ferrers at 10am.

Interestingly, the Lammergeier (or Bearded Vulture if you prefer) which has been summering in the Peak District wasn't reported there today but there was a sighting of it at 2.30pm in neighbouring Leicestershire flying SE over Thornton... which begs the question did it come into Northamptonshire airspace?


Neil M

Egyptian Geese.

Grey Heron.

Highland Cow, or if you are
north of the border, Highland 
Coo! A small herd of these
animals manage the sward and
coarse grasses of the Ditchford
Lakes and Meadows reserve.

All images from Ditchford Pits today.

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