Sunday, 13 January 2013

A Brief visit to Lee Valley CP

Somehow today was my first visit to Lee Valley CP this year. A mixture of birding trips, weather, and other situations have prevented me from any visits.
So I took the chance to make a brief visit this morning, to get something on the board.
Started the morning at The Bittern Hide. Two Water Rails were heard as I entered the hide, and a Great Spotted Woodpecker was hanging from the peanut feeder. 
With the water low and clear in front of the hide it gave me a great view of a Great Crested Grebe as it dived and searched for food. It also showed just how fast they can move underwater.
The next thing to be seen was not so welcome, a Mink swimming across from the near bank and entering the reedbed. I did wonder if it might flush a Bittern or Water Rail out, but neither were heard or seen.
Just before leaving the hide a Munjac Deer wondered round in front of the hide and went straight across the water and up along the right hand channel. It stayed there for another ten minutes and was still there when I left the hide. Not much else on Seventy Acre's Lake though, bird numbers in general seem well down on previous years.
Moving on along the Old River Lee, a male Bullfinch is seen perched high at the top of a tree. Two Redwings are also spotted.
A female Goosander is seen from the Grebe Hide on Holyfield Lake, and I also add Goldcrest and Treecreeper shortly after leaving the hide. The walk back towards the weir produces a cracking male Goosander seen in flight.
A quick visit to the farm area only adds a few of the common species. Greylag Goose, House Sparrow, Pied Wagtail and Egyptian Goose.
A 2-3 hour visit gets the numbers rolling, albeit very slowly.
No time to make the stop at Bowyers, Friday Lake or Hooks Marsh so they will have to wait until the next visit.

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