Wooed by Wigeon

Firstly I feel I have a confession to make, the sound of the Brent goose has been pushed to the number two spot in my favourite Farlington noises. Its been replaced by the chatter of the Wigeon – they make the most lovely of noises which compared to the gruff grunts of the Brent is very delicate indeed.

I only really noticed this serene call when heading out to check on the water levels of the Lake at low water. On the channel going out into the harbour there were great numbers of Wigeon on the waters edge along with a rather confident Red-breasted merganser. The water levels on the Lake are incredibly high but both Steve and I think its due to the recent persistent rain rather than a malfunctioning tidal flap.

High waters on the Lake

High waters on the Lake

Steve had tipped me off that he had seen a Dartford Warbler in the bushes so on my walk over to the lake I had a look to see if I could see it too. I was told find the Stonechat and you will find the Dartford. I quickly found the smart male Stonechat on scrubby hedgerow between the lake and the bushes (along the fence line). I didn’t have to wait long to find the pretty Warbler, flitting from bramble bush to bramble bush hunting for insects.

I heard reports of good numbers of Avocets seen from the western side of the seawall on the main channel at low tide, looking towards the bridge of Eastern Road, but my luck wasn’t in on this occasion.

Our new Interpretation boards. Cracking artwork by Dan Powell.

Our new Interpretation boards. Cracking artwork by Dan Powell (http://www.powellwildlifeart.com/)

I headed back to the hut to continue on the structures for our new interpretation boards. On my wander lots of Water rail were calling (probably lots moving around the reedbed with the higher than normal water levels) and I could also hear a few Bearded tits calling from the centre section of the reedbed.

End of the day looking out  towards Portsmouth with the Wigeon soundtrack

End of the day looking out towards Portsmouth with the Wigeon soundtrack

Who couldn’t like this noise? (Source – RSPB Website)

If you have any stories, sightings or photos you would like to share on this blog please send them to me at rob.skinner(at)hiwwt.org.uk. Any photos I share I will of course credit. Also if you have not done so already – you can subscribe by pressing the button on the right hand side of this page and you will receive all new blog posts by email alert.

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