You’ll know about our charms of goldfinches and parliament of long-eared owls, but has anyone ever turned to you and said ‘oh just look at that mutation of thrushes’? – no, me neither...
What other weird and wonderful collectives can you see around the reserve?
Pheasant, Ben Hall (rspb-images.com)
Head off around the Discovery Trail where the tame robin has caused quite a stir with visitors this week, he is certainly well fed! Careful though because at any point you could disturb some undergrowth and set flight to a bouquet of pheasants.
When you sit yourself down at Pick-up hide you are almost guaranteed to see a plump of moorhens pecking around, likely beneath the feeders where a host of tree sparrows are eating their lunch, where a willow tit was also seen this week.
Mallard, Ben Hall (rspb-images.com)
On a good day you might look out upon a brightly coloured spring of teal, and if you’re lucky, a wisp of snipe may have stopped off for a rest. If you carry on around to the Feeder Screen there is always a jolly puddle of mallards splashing and nibbling on fallen seed, and on occasion a bellowing of bullfinches will make an appearance.
Onwards to the Kingfisher Screen where you might be accosted by a herd of wrens, or a party of jays may ‘skwaaaark!’ overhead. Always stop and have a look because the kingfisher has been spotted a good many times this week.
Lapwing, Andy Hay (rspb-images.com)
When you reach Big Hole you’ll see a deceit of lapwings lining the shore while a covert of coots drift and a bevy of swans swim. Off along the Riverbank Trail and a descent of green woodpeckers might take flight into the trees, although only one was reported this week.
Green woodpecker, Andy Hay (rspb-images.com)
A little grebe was seen at main bay earlier in the week, along with the usual gulp of cormorants and a dopping of goosander floating regally by.
Why not bring your delight of grandchildren, get in a round of hot chocolate and while away a handful of hours?