News of a Slav Grebe present on my local patch came through just too late for me to go for it last night. Having briefly entertained the idea of making the trip, this was ruled out when I realised the lake would be in total darkness on arrival.
So first stop this morning was to the Lee Valley, hoping but not expecting the grebe to still be present. With clear skies last night it gave the grebe the opportunity to move on.
Heading up the Crooked Mile and turning down Fisher's Green Lane, We take the scenic route round towards Friday Lake too find it covered in a carpet of mist.
On route my first Sedge Warblers of the year are heard and with a bit of Patience eventually seen. Visibility of the lake slowly becomes clearer and a Black Swan swims into view. A surprising find as it's normally to be found on Bowyer's Water.
A scan of the lake only produces Great Crested Grebes, Tufted Ducks, Mute Swans and the Black Swan. I bumped into Mike Oakland who had found the grebe the previous night, but he also had no joy re-finding it.
A Slav Grebe would be reported later in the day at King George V Reservoir
Back at the bridge the first Cuckoo is seen as it flies across Seventy Acres Lake and heads away towards Fisher's Green Island.
Next stop is Startop's End Reservoir in search of Arctic Tern. On arrival two Cuckoo's are heard and with the aid of the scope one is found perched in an ivy covered tree at the back of Marsworth Reservoir.
Walking past the reed bed my first Reed Warbler of 2013 is heard and Plenty of Common Terns are present over both reservoirs and after several scans amongst them a single Arctic Tern is found. It lands briefly on one of the rafts, to give good scope views.
Seven Red-Crested Pochard including three drakes are found on Startop's, and they approach close enough to allow for some photo's.
|Red Crested Pochard (female)|
Two Grey Wagtails drop in onto the reservoir banks and Great Crested Grebes are busy displaying, but too distant for photo's.
On the way home stop offs at Blows Down and Pegsdon Hills in Bedfordshire and Ivenhoe Beacon in Buckinghamshire in search of Ring Ouzels all end in disappointment.
Looking across from Ivenhoe Beacon, the Lion figure on Bison Hill is clearly visible. Having been made for Whipsnade Zoo who own the land.
So still no Ring Ouzel, it's proving a difficult bird to catch up with.