Thursday, 27 August 2020

Farmoor Reservoir :: 26 August 2020

We wanted to have a walk on the flat as Charlotte had injured her back at the weekend; she is still recovering and suggested a visit to Farmoor Reservoir. Although I'd been at the weekend, you just never know what may be on the causeway - yesterday a juvenile knot.

The new parking measures have still to be turned on and when we arrived the car park was relatively busy - it turned out to be related to the sailing club lessons for boats and windsurfing on F2.

Still no sightings of yellow wagtail at the water treatment works but still a few house martin and swallows hunting there - we set off across the causeway. No waders but nine mute swan along the water's edge. The only notable change from the weekend was a larger number of cormorant (couldn't pick out any shag amongst them - big fall across the region at the weekend) and more sand martin than you could throw a stick at. Two ringed plover skimmed the water's surface out across F1 and out of sight.

Sand martin

Again, there were large numbers of coot gathered at the western end of the causeway and we paused to decide what to do. We dropped down to the river, passing the Shrike Meadow hide (still closed). We walked along the river and encountered a large mixed flock of tits (long-tailed, great, blue), joined by chiffchaff and a treecreeper.

We paused on a bench and watched as a canoe was paddled by leisurely, making use of the relatively fast flowing current. A red kite scouted the field opposite.

We followed the river and turned onto the Pinkhill Reserve, then back up to the reservoir edge. Charlotte's back was getting tired and so we called it a day and made for the car, seeing only a single common sandpiper flushed by another group ahead of us.

Sightings (27) included: black-headed gull, blackbird, blue tit, carrion crow, chiffchaff, common sandpiper, coot, cormorant, great crested grebe, great tit, greylag goose, herring gull, house martin, lesser black-backed gull, long-tailed tit, magpie, mallard, mute swan, pied wagtail, red kite, robin, ringed plover, sand martin, swallow, treecreeper, tufted duck and woodpigeon.

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