Osprey nest false start, tarpaulin and a smew

Volunteer Thursday today and we headed over to Ibsley Water with a plan of building a nest on the osprey nesting platform, however the calm morning soon became a very windy morning and we decided going up a ladder in such an exposed area was a bad idea. We did manage to cut back a lot of scrub from around the platform as some of the willows and birches were nearly the same height around the platform. Another gang of volunteers helped raked up cut grass, rush and bramble to maintain winter grazing habitat for visiting wildfowl. They also tried a new method of moving the cuttings by raking it onto a large tarpaulin and carrying it in large heaps to the the fence line. The method worked superbly, so thanks to volunteer Judy for the genius idea!

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The team using a Tarpaulin to move cut grass and rush.

A big thank you to all the volunteers who braved the cold wind and helped today, we couldn’t maintain the nature reserve without you!

Lots of great birds reported today including:

Bittern, great white egret, 2 little egret, smew (immature/female), kingfisher, water rail – Ivy Lake

Black-necked grebe, 9 pintail, red crested pochard (drake), peregrine falcon – Ibsley Water

The smew was found by top local ornithologist and bird ringer Kevin Sayer at about 10.30 this morning and was seen several times throughout the day.

The starling roost again was pretty impressive although the wind did keep them slightly lower, again they were best viewed looking west from the Tern Hide car park between 3.30 and 4pm.

Kevin Sayer also managed to get this record shot of Tuesday’s common scoters on Ibsley Water. Female and immature common scoters look very similar so these birds can’t be accurately sexed or aged, all that can be said is they are not adult males as they are not jet black. Thank you Kevin for sending us the photo.

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Immature/female common Scoters, Ibsley Water 3/12/13

 

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