Tuesday, 1 September 2020

Napton Reservoir :: 01 September 2020

I'd got plans in the afternoon, including a call for work, so decided to stay local and try a bit of morning birding. I decided on a visit to Napton Reservoir as I hadn't been for a while. It turned out to be a sunnier morning than I'd expected - when I got out the car I could see a few fisherman already in situ. A number of hirundines cut through the air - it is always good to have sand martin on any day out.

I made my way around, anti-clockwise. In the trees to my right I saw some movement and through my bins picked out a willow warbler. It was mobile and disappeared back in to the foliage, but soon appeared to land on the perimeter fence - the fence is relatively new and I think is to protect the reservoir (and fishing club) from otters. I moved left to get a clearer view and realised it was in fact a female common redstart; almost immediately the willow warler took to the wing and flew far left.

Common redstart

The redstart stayed just a minute then flew away into the distant hedge. I could hear calls from the opposite side of the field and spotted the male feeding.

I then found a reed warbler in the far reed bed just before another birder appeared from the gate into the righthand fields. He commented how quiet it was on the site but I pointed him to where I'd just seen the redstart. I then waited by the narrow channel to see if I could spot any warblers. I didn't see any more but movement drew my attention to a water rail skulking in the edge of the reeds. I think this is my first for the year!

I had to get home but stopped to talk with one of the fisherman. I remember talking to him last time I was there and that he worked at JLR Solihull, although he is currently on furlough. I enjoyed the chat and ended up late leaving.

Sightings (21) included: black-headed gull, blackbird, blue tit, canada goose, carrion crow, coot, great crested grebe, house martin, kestrel, magpie, mallard, moorhen, redstart, reed bunting, reed warbler, robin, sand martin, swallow, water rail, willow warbler and woodpigeon.

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