Trip reports


Ian Parker

Saturday, 29 October 2016

Boxmoor Trust are in the process of developing the old watercress beds in Old Fishery Lane into a local nature reserve. So far areas of scrub have been cleared and a hide built overlooking a new scrape with perches for kingfishers.

The area called Gadespring is open on the last Sunday of every month from 11.00am to 2.00pm. Today an additional early bird watch from 8.30am to 10.30am took place for RSPB members.

A mist hung over the reserve as 8 members of our RSPB Hemel Hempstead Local Group arrived and were greeted by a kingfisher as they entered the hide. This beautiful bird briefly landed on one of the perches and made four other fly pasts over the scrape.

A grey wagtail flew in and foraged in the mud at the water edge. On the feeders blue tit and black tit (David Brown's 7yr old grandson, George Barrett, uses this special apposite name for a great tit!) made an appearance as well as chaffinch and greater spotted woodpecker.

We were hoping for a demonstration of bird ringing but unfortunately no birds were caught in the mist net that morning: perhaps it was the fact that the morning was misty or, on the other hand, the clocks had been put back and all the birds were up and gone but the time we arrived!

We walked along to the end of the reserve and saw two little egret and a grey heron.

By the time we left the reserve we had seen a total of 18 different species, which included robin, dunnock, wren, blackbird, grey wagtail, black headed gull, wood and feral pigeon and carrion crow flew overhead as moorhen and coot grazed on the scrape.

Many thanks to David Kirk and Liz & David Warriner for arranging this session and I am sure they would welcome any help from anyone in our Local Group to assist them in the development of this site. Please contact Boxmoor Trust if you are interested to offer your help. Telephone number 01442 253300