I had to work from home today due to needing to be in to sign for an urgent package, luckily the package arrived at lunch time which meant I could nip the couple of miles down the road to Bubwith Ings, part of my new local patch within the Lower Derwent Valley for 30 minutes (I'll write a detailed post on my new local patch shortly).
I love having these sites so close to home, I can literally go out the front door and be having great birds in less than 5 minutes! (And still have time to get back, grab a sandwich and get back to work! - It certainly beats fighting the crowds at lunch most days when I'm in the office in York!)
I got out the car by Bubwith Bridge set my scope and started to scan the floods. A flock of Greylag geese and a single feral 'white farmyard' goose grazed nearby with tons of Eurasian Wigeon and Common Teal strung out for as far as I could see. Mixed amongst them were the dainty Gadwall, bold Mallard and the busily feeding Tufted Duck, however the highlight was certainly a decent number of Northern Pintail -I really love these ducks, generally I'm not a great fan of ducks (though I guess that may change with living here!) but I really can't get enough of Pintail. I can still remember getting my first ever Pintail all those years ago during a seawatch on the north Norfolk coast. Great fun to have them so close to home.
J.M. Garg (2007) from Wikipedia
Other bits and pieces noted included Lapwing, Moorhen and Coot and a range of gulls (though not a lot of them). On the way back home I pulled into a field entrance and scanned a flock of 21 Swans, all Mute, no sign of any Whoopers or the Black Swan either.
A great way to relax and recharge during my lunch break!
My dusk dog walk produced either one very wide-ranging, or two Barn Owls hunting ditches and 'wasteland'. Not as good views as I had on Sunday evening from the North Duffield Carrs but these were closer to my house - and give me hope that I may get one from the garden sometime in the future!
Interested to hear about the deceased American Purple Gallinule that turned up in someones garden yesterday: See Lee Evans Blog for details! Check your gardens people! STOP PRESS EDIT PHOTOS NOW HERE.