Trip reports

Lackford Lakes May 21st 2016

Hobby chasing dragonflies
RSPB

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Bird song was everywhere but what a difference an hour makes. By 10.30am a lot of birds had stopped singing but to compensate we had an excellent view of a red kite flying low over our heads. Cetti's and reed warblers were still singing but not to be seen as usual. Swifts were screaming above us as we made our way to Paul's hide. A variety of ducks and geese -some with young - were on the scrape along with great crested grebes and herons.
Garden warbler, blackcap and chiffchaff were in the bushes on the way to Bernard's hide but the double decker hide famed for kingfishers let us down. Our disappointment was assuaged somewhat by a low flying hobby.
The highlight of the day came after lunch when we were on our way to Ash Carr when an eagle-eyed member spotted a coal tit disappearing into a very small hole at the base of a tree. We spent some time watching the adults come and go with feed and we were rewarded with glimpses of the young in the nest.
Red crested pochard are a regular sighting at Lackford Lakes and on this visit there was the addition of two delightful ducklings on Mill Deep. A pair of great crested grebes had built a nest just outside Bess's hide we were privileged to see them mating. Unfortunately when they both moved off a mute swan decided to rip the nest to bits - not very neighbourly of them! The kingfisher finally put in an appearance at Derek's hide but only in flight across Plover Lake.
Our final treat of the day was watching a great spotted woodpecker who thought he was a tree creeper as he kept flying into the base of a tree outside Steggall's hide, climbing halfway to the top and then flying to the bottom again. This went on for quite a while much to our amusement.
Lackford Lakes is a lovely reserve and well worth a visit. We saw/heard over fifty species of birds, which was excellent and then finished off the day with tea and cake in the visitor centre.
Jane Bond