As we edge into winter (boo) the numbers of wildfowl on the reserve just continue to increase (yay!). Last weekends (14th November) Wetland Birds Survey gave us a good indication of what's happening on the whole reserve, with results as follows:
Barr Loch: 2 great crested grebe, 1 cormorant, 2 grey heron, 8 mute swan, 16 whooper swan, 141 wigeon, 17 teal, 15 mallard, 83 tufted ducks, 30 goldeneye, 4 goosander, 4 moorhen, 98 coot, 158 lapwing and 43 snipe. Also, 1 each of buzzard, sparrowhawk and kestrel, 16 fieldfares, 4 redwings, a mistle thrush, a raven and 5 reed buntings.
Aird Meadow Loch: 3 little grebe, 1 grey heron, 1 mute swan, 8 whooper swan, 8 teal, 28 mallard, 4 pochard, 67 tufted ducks, 1 scaup, 24 goldeneye, 2 goosander and 6 coot. Also, a kestrel and a roe deer.
The feeding station has continued to be busy, with goldfinch numbers steadily increasing. The great spotted woodpecker has been coming down to feed on fat, peanuts and fruity nibbles several times a day. Other highlights at the feeders this week have included a brambling, reed buntings,dunnock, numerous chaffinches with numbers varying between 12 & 32, fieldfares and redwings feeding on berries just at the edge of the main feeders, lesser redpoll, siskins, long tailed tits, a sparrowhawk and a female pheasant who seems to have made herself at home this winter.
Today (20th Nov) we have had a beautiful group of 2 males and 1 female bullfinches in the woodland strip by the pond dipping area, along with a small flock of redwings, long tailed tits, blackbirds and a song thurush.
Additionally, an otter and a fox were seen on the reserve on the 15th November, so keep your eyes peeled for those too!