Trip reports

Hogganfield Loch

Hogganfield Loch
Winnie Tompson

Sunday, 16 November 2014

It was a dull but mild day when eleven members met by the loch side where there were many feral pigeons and mute swans gathered for the daily supplementary feeding. Mike asked us to note if there was any green tagged swans among the group, as they would be some of the Lothian population he had tagged earlier on in the year, but we did not spot any. There was however three whooper swans in the group and a couple of pink-footed geese. Other fowl seen from the loch side were goosander, with their pink flushed breasts showing well in the light, coot, tufted duck, mallard, goldeneye and moorhen.

Walking further on we were able to admire two pairs of gadwall, teal, a juvenile cormorant and lesser black-backed, herring and black-headed gulls. We saw carrion crows, blue and great tits and a pied wagtail in the trees and surrounding grassy areas. Turning away from the loch to an area full of berry bushes, we saw the characteristic flight of a pair of great-spotted woodpeckers, some blackbirds, a song thrush, five bullfinches, and a coal tit. A large number of redwing, with a few fieldfares were moving through the bushes. A kestrel hovered above a marshy area regularly swooping down, but we did not see it catch anything. It then came to rest in a tree and we all had prolonged and wonderful views of the bird in all it's detail. A small flock of greenfinch, a mistle thrush and a buzzard were also seen.

We then moved on towards Cardowan Moss, with sightings of a grey heron, a robin, some goldcrests flitting about in a pine tree and a flock of long-tailed tits. Looking over the loch from our lunch time vantage point we spotted a common gull and walking back saw a reed bunting and woodpigeon. As we neared the housing we added house sparrows, a few starlings a dunnock and a chaffinch. We all agreed this would be a good venue to visit again, perhaps in late May.