Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Out and about

A day in the office today but still plenty of interest. In my lunch break I decided to have a walk around Appleton reservoir near Warrington. However I didn't even get halfway round because I spotted the unusual sight (for me at least!) of a little grebe nest building, and I decided to spend some time watching it. It was very wary and I had to hide in the vegetation in order to watch it, which explains the furtive looking photos below.

I don't recall ever seeing a little grebe nest before, yet they nest on platforms in floating vegetation and I think there are up to three pairs this year at Appleton reservoir alone. When I first spotted this nest, I'm fairly sure that I caught a glimpse of an egg, but the adult was in the process of covering it up with weed and I didn't see it again and the adult didn't sit on the nest. Also at the reservoir today, an adult little grebe feeding two well grown chicks and at least 24 tufted ducks.


I've not seen many painted ladies this year, but this is the best by a mile. Surely freshly emerged and not just arrived from Europe?

At both ends of the day I called in at Pennington Flash and had more good views of the Sabine's gull, which is still hanging around near Horrock's Hide, and apparently feeding normally.
 


The birds moult continues apace, but is it my imagination or is the yellow bill getting brighter?
 



In the evening I was walking near Teal hide and spotted this roe deer on the path in front. It clearly saw me, but didn't seem too bothered.


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