Guided Walk 4th December

Ogston Bird Club guided walk 4 December 2021


With our usual leader being AWOL and most of the regular attendees presumably on Christmas shopping duties, the three who turned up opted for a shorter walk to Brackenfield Green returning via Millers Lane and the church.

Initially, the smaller birds were noticeable by their absence although quite a variety were on display at Green Farm on Millers Lane and later the small group size gave us ample opportunity to identify the various species of duck on the reservoir next to Carr Pond.

A total of 38 species were recorded as below in the approximate order of sighting:-

Greylag Goose, Robin, Great Crested Grebe, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Cormorant, Blackbird, Teal, Coot, Gadwall, Mute Swan, Carrion Crow, Blue Tit, Herring Gull, Black-headed Gull, Woodpigeon, Tufted Duck, Grey Heron, Mallard, Grey Wagtail, Moorhen, Jay, Canada Goose, Pheasant, Dunnock, Nuthatch, Magpie, Great Tit, Coal Tit, Bullfinch, Goldfinch, House Sparrow, Greenfinch, Chaffinch, Redwing, Mistle Thrush, Kestrel, Goosander (1 male and 3 female), Goldeneye (1 male and 2 female).

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Sunday 5th December

3 Goosander (1m 2f), 25 Great Crested Grebe, 4 Goldeneye (2m 2f), 11 Lesser Redpoll, 1 Dunlin, 1 Grey Wagtail, 12 Wigeon, Little Egret

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Saturday 4th December

Great Spotted Woodpecker, Dunlin, Sparrowhawk, 4 Goosander (1 m, 3 female), 3 Goldeneye (1 m, 2 female), 30 Gadwall, 4 Wigeon

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North Cave & Blacktoft Trip Report – 18/11/21

At the end of the day, 13 members said that they’d enjoyed the trip which surprised the leader a bit considering how quiet Blacktoft had been. We started at North Cave in glorious sunshine and between us, visited all the hides during the morning. The best viewing however, was from the covered picnic area opposite the butty van. Here, amongst the numerous lapwing we had excellent views of Common Snipe, Ruff, a Black-tailed


Godwit and Redshank. Subsequently on our walk round, in addition to more common birds, we got a great view of a female Yellow Hammer. At lunchtime, rather sadly because we probably hadn’t spent enough time at North Cave, we headed off for Blacktoft. The early arrivals there were treated to a close view of a single Fieldfare looking magnificent in the sunshine. However, we were all keen to see the anticipated star of the show, the White-tailed Lapwing so an enquiry to a ‘bazooka’ toting photographer elicited that it was showing from Xerox Hide. Indeed it was and a very elegant bird in its subdued colours

White-tailed Lapwing – very rare migrant – breeds Central Asia as far west as Iraq

(except for the yellow legs). One member remarked that it had a rather kind face. However, that was the only bird on this lagoon, definitely a case of ‘Billy no mates’. And that pretty much summed up Blacktoft – no birds. Slight exaggeration but the Ousefleet Hide was the only one where a substantial number of birds were found and then not much variety. Towards the end of the afternoon, we arrived at the Singleton Hide hoping for a Marsh Harrier bonanza but here, while getting quite close views, there were only three

Marsh Harrier

birds in the air at any one time – a far cry from the eleven seen some years ago.
43 species in total not including a male Brimstone Butterfly at North Cave.

Photos thanks to Joyce Sawford and Martin Kaye

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November Guided Walk

For this months stroll we took in a full circuit of the reservoir on a dry, mainly overcast but still reasonably bright day.

8 soles were rewarded with a pleasant total of 42 species!

Redwing, Cormorant, Long Tailed Tit, Goldcrest, Grey Heron, Moorhen, Tufted Duck, Teal, Blue Tit, Little Grebe, Shoveler, Mallard, Great Crested Grebe, Black Headed Gull, Gadwall, Jackdaw, Robin, Lesser Black Backed Gull, Jay, Pied Wagtail, Wren, Goldfinch, Wood Pigeon, Mistle Thrush, Blackbird, Nuthatch, Buzzard, Magpie, Fieldfare, Dunnock, Great Tit, Coot, Kestrel, Pink Footed Geese, (70+) Canada Geese, Brambling, Sparrowhawk, Mute Swan, Little Egret, Herring Gull, Great Black-backed Gull, Shelduck

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October Guided Walk

14 hardy members took to the October guided walk along the reservoir West Bank, around Brackenfield, behind Carr Wood and sensibly avoiding Top Farm. A total of 36 species were recorded.

Blackbird, Blue Tit, Canada Goose, Carrion Crow, Chaffinch, Chiffchaff, Coot, Cormorant, Dunnock, Goldfinch, Great Crested Grebe, Great Tit, Greylag Goose, Grey Heron, Black Headed Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, House Martin, Jackdaw, Jay, Lapwing, Long- tailed Tit, Magpie, Mallard, Mute Swan, Nuthatch, Pied Wagtail, Robin, Song Thrush, Sparrowhawk, Swallow, Teal, Tufted Duck, Woodpigeon, Wren

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Old Moor Trip Report – 28/10/21

Eleven members had a rather abbreviated trip due to the leaders inability to make the earlier, insane time of 07:30 (which many seemed quite pleased about). Instead, we met just before 10:00 and after a brief chat to the reserve’s manager who explained some of the developments that were in progress, we got onto the reserve and headed for the Reed Bed Hide where Jack Snipe had been seen in previous days. The wind was unfortunately quite strong which might have been good for the local turbines but rubbish for spotting Bearded Tits. From the hide we had good but distant views of a Green Sandpiper and a juvenile/female Marsh Harrier put in an appearance to which a pair of local Crows objected too most vigorously. Then one of the ‘locals’ spotted a Jack Snipe. After a few anxious minutes, everyone managed to get a sighting of this skulking bird. However, as time passed it did emerge from the reeds and gave good views of the dark stripe down the centre of its head and its split supercilium. Turning its back on us revealed the broad and very bright yellow back stripes.

Jack Snipe showing split supercilium

‘Jack Sniped’ out, we moved on and while some went back to the cars to collect lunch, the rest of us moved to the brand new family hide. Here we had sighting of a single Pintail but

Pair of Shovellers and a sleeping Pintail

the main entertainment came courtesy of a juvenile Peregrine which made a number of failed assaults on the surrounding bird life on the Mere. On one occasion, as it passed over the distant trees, a couple of angry Buzzards flew up and flashed their talons at it.

Juvenile Peregrine feeling a bit down hearted

Fed and watered, the group moved on to the Wath Ings Hide where sadly, and rather surprisingly, there was little of note although one sharp eyed spotter picked up the flash of a Kingfisher.
All in all, a bit quiet although with some memorable highlights – 44 species all told.
Photos taken by Joyce Sawford and Martin Kaye

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Guided Walk 4th September 2021

The walk was well attended by 14 people. We did the loop around the reservoir which took about three hours. Thirty three species were seen, the highlights being a large flock of Hirundines over the car park, mainly Sand Martin and House Martin, plus 5 Swift’s. Along the route, two of the group saw a Spotted Flycatcher while other varieties spotted were mainly woodland species.

J Marshall

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Frampton Trip Report – 15/8/21

Seventeen folk enjoyed Frampton Marsh in glorious warm sunny weather. On the way to the sea wall, the first bird of note was a Curlew Sandpiper in almost full breeding plumage and this held up proceedings for a while delaying the ‘main meal’ of the day, the Pacific

The Ogston team on the sea wall

Golden Plover.  Easy to find by first locating the line of scopes and cameras. The main differences between this species and the Golden Plover when seen at a distance, is that the

former has more white over the eye, down the neck and a bulge of white on the upper breast.  In addition, the back is more coarsely patterned. However, it would need to be a very knowledgeable birder to make the ID. In addition to the Plover, there was a supporting cast of a Short-eared Owl, Kestrels, a Peregrine, Marsh Harrier and great White Egret. As a consequence it was difficult to drag the group away to explore the rest of the reserve.
Continuing north along the sea wall, we had sightings of both Ruff, Avocets, Little Ringed

and Ringed Plovers, 12+ Greenshank, 15 Spoonbills, a juvenile Scaup, Snipe, Yellow Wagtails and Common Terns. From the East Hide, we got close views of the massed ranks

Guardian of the marsh

of Black-tailed Godwits interspersed with Knot, some of which sported their brick red breeding plumage. Surprisingly, there was little to see from the 360 hide except a large flock of Linnets. In the afternoon, we concentrated on the Reed Bed part of the reserve, getting excellent views of.a male Scaup, huge numbers of Dunlin and Ringed Plover, a Great Spotted Woodpecker and 3 Green Sandpiper. In addition, this part of the reserve was alive with butterflies including a Holly Blue.

A very enjoyable day with 57 bird species recorded.
On the return home, some members took a diversion to Freiston Shore and their luck held with views of the Black Stork.

Black Stork – Freiston Shore

Photos courtesy of Steve Sutcliffe, Joyce Sawford and the mediocre ones of the Pacific Golden Plover – Martin Kaye.

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Annesley Pit Top Trip Report – 17/6/21

Initially the weather was quite cool and still, which didn’t encourage raptors to take to the air. Nonetheless 17 members enjoyed an interesting trip with plenty to see. All in all 52 bird species were identified plus an occasional dragonfly and 3 brown hares. On the walk round the lakes, we were serenaded with bird song allowing members to brush up on their listening ID skills of the different warblers; Blackcaps, Willow Warblers, Whitethroats, and Reed Warblers plus Skylarks and Reed Buntings were notably present. Top spots for the water birds must go to the Black-necked Grebes and Little Ringed

Black-necked Grebe

Plovers which kept the group entertained for quite some time. As the morning progressed, it gradually became warmer and the wind picked up a little but other than a fleeting glimpse of a Kestrel, the birds of prey remained stubbornly absent until towards the end of the morning when a couple of Buzzards were seen over the woodland to the north

Ten of the seventeen Black-necked Grebe spotting

east. Sadly, though, no Hobbies. And then my phone rang – it was Nottinghamshire police wanting to speak to one of our members who had joined the trip but seemingly left her car door open. The kindly copper ascertained that she had her car keys before locking it. Right, back to birding!  Returning to the initial view over the lake diligence finally paid off when Dag Marshall picked up a Honey Buzzard at some distance circling on flat wings. Any doubts as to the ID of this bird were dispelled when it flew close by. How the early leavers must have regretted their premature departure.

Photos thanks to J Marshall

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