Saturday, 19 January 2013

More Aythya Action North Duffield

Spent the majority of the day at North Duffield Carrs today. Woke to find an inch or so of snow on the deck and had an enjoyable walk with the dogs noting fox, badger, roe deer, rabbit, pheasant and a host of small bird prints in the fresh snow. The hedges were busy with Fieldfare and a flock of 5 or 6 Bullfinch and a couple of Reed Bunting were noted.

Down at the hide I met up with Jono, Chris and Ollie to tales of Cetti's Warblers and Sea-Eagles that I'd missed! The Aythya hybrid/Lesser Scaup thing came close at one time but I only saw it from behind and didn't see the bill clearly enough, the bird did do one wing flap as it was facing away from us, this did look pretty good for Lesser Scaup! (see part 1 of the story so far here, part 2 here).

Chris and Ollie left and Jono picked out another Aythya asleep with a group of distant Pochard, this immediately looked like a much larger bird than the other Aythya and (after making sure we could see the both of them at the same time!) were happy there was definitely two Aythyas present - once this bird put its head up it was clear it was a Greater Scaup (looked like the bird I had last Friday).

Over the course of the day I could only manage a couple of record shots on my phone of the two birds above, though neither are very good as the birds were still distant but you can kind-of make out the differences.

Greater Scaup (phone-scoped)

Aythya Hybrid/Lesser Scaup bird (phone-scoped)

Not long after Ollie and Chris had left the hide we got some phone calls from them informing us that they'd got some Waxwing in the car park. We went straight round (a good job we did too as they were flushed by a truck, flew off and weren't seen again!!). Again, just the following record shots.

Waxwing record shot

Three of the Waxwing

Other wildfowl recorded down there today included Great Crested Grebe (my first here this winter), Little Grebe, 300+ Tufted Duck, 100 Pochard, 100 Pintail, 5000+ Teal/Wigeon, 68 Whooper Swans, 200 Mallard, 5 Shoveler, 25 Goldeneye, 5 Gadwall, 5 Shelduck, 40 Mute Swan, 30 Coot, 6 Moorhen and as dusk approached 'the' pair of Bewick's Swans flew in.

Waders included Lapwing, Ruff, Golden Plover, Redshank, Dunlin and Snipe.  Raptors included Barn Owl, Marsh Harrier, Kestrel and 2 Buzzard. There was quite a few Meadow Pipit, Fieldfare, Redwing, Pied Wagtail and Robin about and several Long-tailed Tit visited the feeders.

The Robin was nice and obliging, allowing me to sort out next years Christmas card!




Long-tailed Tit


  1. Thats a really nice photo of a Robin! - the old ladies will approve ;-p

  2. That is one very fluffed up robin there! Lovely photo!

  3. Thanks Lou :-) was a very friendly bird!