Trip reports

RUTLAND WATER 15TH October 2016

RUTLAND WATER 15TH October 2016
David Brown

Saturday, 15 October 2016

On the journey we saw two raptors, sparrowhawk and common buzzard as well as 5 crows - rook, jackdaw, magpie, jay and carrion. After an excellent breakfast at Morrisons in Stamford our group met up in the North Car Park on Rutland Water. We walked onto a sandy "beach" and had good views of goldeneye, wigeon, teal, great crested grebe, gadwall and large numbers of tufted duck. In among the flocks of black headed gulls were 3 great black backs. Over 25 cormorants paddled by in line formation, with their necks upright, looking like the periscopes from a marauding pack of submarines. We then walked along the dam, pausing to avoid the many cyclists on the cycleway that circles Rutland Water before returning to our cars to travel to the Egleton Centre.

The Centre has 2 floors both with excellent views over a lagoon. A pair of egyptian geese were on the first island and a great white egret preened itself on the furthermost scrape.

Thirteen hides are accessed on the walks north of the Centre and sixteen on the south side. It was not possible to visit them all in the time available but we managed most on the north side. The trails have been relaid and hard standing has replaced many of the muddy paths since our last visit. At the Redshank Hide shoveler, coot, mute swan, wigeon, moorhen, mallard and grey heron.

From the Sandpiper Hide a dozen lapwings swooped about above 3 ringed plover, common gull, dunlin, gadwall and 30+ mute swans. As we left the hide, a small flock of redwing with a few fieldfare alighted on a dead tree.

The Shoveler Hide proved the most productive of the day with a second great white egret, this time standing near to a little egret, so we could compare the huge difference in size. Flocks of linnet and starling flew over and a marsh harrier hunted over the reeds whilst common sandpiper and pied wagtail fed in the mud. Over 50 cormorants posed on the scrape with 3 grey heron and in the lagoon were little grebe, greylag geese, wigeon, and shoveler. We returned to the Centre calling in at the Smew, Crake and Lapwing hides. A kingfisher was seen twice and a cettis warbler exploded into song. Two more dabchicks, canada geese and a second yellow leg gull, a herring gull and a common gull were added to the list. Over 25 ruff, great crested grebe and kestrel were seen from the Lapwing Hide. Leaving the Centre some of our group went to the Mallard and Snipe Hides and saw stonechat and another kingfisher

On the way home we stopped off at Eyebrook reservoir which had huge numbers of ducks and gulls. With the light fading close to shore were common pochard. We did not add to the day list until in one field on the west side over 100 greylag geese grazed and amongst them were over 50 red legged partridge and over 20 pheasant.

Altogether at least 64 different species had been seen by the group. A great day out which left us tired and ready for the journey home. Finally many thanks to the drivers, who drove us to the reserves. We really do appreciate you taking us for a very enjoyable day out.

Alan Corner, Dave Jones Caroline Slatter, Cliff Parslow, David Brown, Ian Parker, Mike Bassett, John Frone, Gavin Hughes, Robert Moore, Kathy Moore, Jane Pate.

report by Alan Corner