Friday, 1 January 2016

New year's deluge

Our annual year listing event today - the lack of wintering birds due to the mild weather never promised a record breaker - but a good effort none the less and a respectable tally of 66 (*we said 65 originally but forgot to write in Teal) species in the day:

Starting from Angram Farm and scanning the fields along the Yorkshire Water approach Road;
1. Tree Sparrow
2. Chaffinch
3. Blackbird
4. Great Tit
5. Blue Tit
6. Robin
7. Feral Pigeon
8. Rook
9. Carrion Crow
10. Herring Gull
11. Great Black Backed Gull
12. Common Gull
13. Red legged Partridge
14. Woodpigeon
15. Moorhen in Barmston Drain
16. Pheasant
17. House Sparrow
18. Dunnock
Catching up with some of the regulars before starting we learnt of earlier;
19. Kestrel
20. Little Egret
21. Lapwing
22. Coal Tit
23. Goldcrest
24. Goldfinch
25. Great Spotted Woodpecker
26. Lesser Black Backed Gull
27. Willow Tit
28. Barn owl
Starting in the car park we had:
29. Fieldfare
30. Magpie
And into D res we had;
31. Great crested Grebe
32. Mallard
33. Coot
34. Pochard
35. Tufted Duck
36. Cormorant
37. Greylag
38. Gadwall
39. Wigeon
40. Buzzard
41. Black headed Gull
42. Shoveler
A trip north through D woods saw;
43. Jackdaw
44. Wren
45. Sparrowhawk
46. Water Rail
47. Song Thrush
Arriving at Hempholme Lock we had;
48. Little Grebe
49. Mute Swan
50. Long tailed Tit
51. Stock Dove
A return down the river Hull saw a nice bonus:
52. Lesser redpoll flock of 7 - photo by Dave Ware
53. Tree Creeper was found just before the car park
54. Collared Dove
After lunch around the lagoons were
55. Siskin
56. Starling over the Southern Marshes
57. With Pied Wagtail on them
At Watton NR
58. Curlew
59. Redshank
60. Snipe
61. Grey Heron
Back on the D reservoir courtesy of Martin was
62. Scaup
63. Mediterranean Gull
64. Yellow legged Gull
and finally Michael Preston had seen a
65. Kingfisher on North Marsh in the afternoon
*66. Teal

So a reasonable tally - not bad given no exciting smew etc. As ever there were an number of notable omissions that should or could have been seen;
Greenfinch - perhaps a sign of the times - do come to feeders erratically
Grey Partridge - likewise
Marsh Harrier - Didn't grace us today but ever present
Cetti's - likewise
Mistle Thrush - likewise
Tawny Owl - likewise
Goosander - likewise
Jack Snipe - in Hempholme undoubtedly but we didnt flush
Woodcock - none in the meadow or elsewhere - a 'drive' would have dislodged them
Spotted Redshank - reported 27th and presumably same lingerer.
Red Crested Pochard - absent today
Pintail - here on 29th
Whooper Swan - immature had moved off. 
Bittern - probably here somewhere but the ice hasn't encouraged it out. 
Short-eared owl - not far away and occasionally wandering onto Watton NR
Grey wagtail - often at the lock but some disturbance by time we had arrived

So a 'theoretical' 80 odd if all your stars aligned on a winter visit to Tophill

No significant geese flocks for exciting ones (even Canada!), and no tit flocks for a summer warbler sticking around.  And no hope for arctic white wing gulls in the roost - the three species present that should be in southern Europe were telling as anything.

Otherwise; otter, brown hare, roe deer and rabbit for those counting. 

A lot of fresh plant growth - and as one of our regulars said - just 10 weeks til the first Little Ringed Plover now. 

Otherwise since the last post:
Goosander, med gull nightly to a peak of 6 on the 31st, yellow legged gull regularly.

The flooding which affected many areas seems to have not affected Tophill particularly.  As ever the chalk aquifer damps the flows down of the river Hull - however it appears the boxing day rain in the upper reaches did cause a brief spate in the river - which our unfortunate trail camera which was merrily above the waters on the 23rd will testify:
Plenty of folk has worse than this to contend with though