Wednesday, 21 December 2016
Greylake and Catcott 20/12 Merlin, Harrier, Lapwings and Ducks
Arrived at Greylake at around 10am to bright skies and quite a full carpark. I guess folk were taking advantage of a sunny day for birding and photography. The hide was full with many familiar faces who had been there for a good couple of hours and declared that the area was pretty quiet as most birds were at the back of the reserve. Within 10 minutes of our arrival a few people left which gave us a front row seat.
It wasn't long until until the action kicked off. The skies were filled with a steady stream of 1000's of Lapwings swimming across the skies almost shaping up to a murmuration! We have never seen so many Lapwings in one place. It wasn't long until a Marsh Harrier took to the sky along with many ducks as it flew over the reeds. As the Harrier flew it pushed more ducks towards the hide. Two flocks of Snipe whizzed by, their flight sounds amazing! The Merlin is still around and was found sitting on its favourite tree perch some distance away. Plenty of Stonechats around the reserve as well as Reed Buntings. Highlight of the visit had to be the very close visit to the hide of a female Marsh Harrier - speechless! Other birds of note Gadwall, Shoveler, Wigeon, Teal, Golden Plover, Great Egret, Little Egret, Raven.
A quick visit to Catcott on our way home, increasing cloud and a cold raw wind blowing through the hide! Large numbers of Fieldfares in the fields around Catcott as well as Starlings. Still good numbers of Teal, Wigeon and Pintail as well as Lapwing with a few Golden Plover.
Eventually the cold wind won as hands and faces were frozen and we left after about an hour.
Steady stream of Lapwings
The chase - Wigeon