I thought as it was nearing the end of January that I had better report on some of the birds I have seen at Nethergong. I have only made 3 visits so far due to one reason or another but hopefully I can continue to make visits throughout February to add to the list. I did spend 4 hours on site on the 1st January until the rain arrived late morning and managed to note 53 species. A few highlights included seeing 1 male Bearded Tit at the lake which seems to have moved on now, 2 Green Woodpecker, 2 Mistle Thrush, 1 Kestrel, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Yellowhammer, c40 Golden Plover, c56 Fieldfare, 1 Marsh Harrier, 1 Grey Wagtail, 36 Lapwing, 2 Reed Bunting, 1 Skylark, 1 Green Sandpiper flushed from the stream, 1 Bullfinch, 1 Cetti's Warbler, 2 Stonechat, 1 Sparrowhawk, 2 Little Egret, 1 Treecreeper, 1 Redwing, 1 Siskin, 2 Ring necked Parakeet and a return visit at dusk saw 1 Barn Owl hunting over the eastern fields. A few days later when I happened to be driving past Nethergong I could see a large Egret standing distantly near the stream which when I looked was obviously the Great White Egret. A good bird to add to the 2018 year list. A couple of visits over this weekend provided a few more birds including 2 Green Sandpiper, c100 Lapwing, c50 Golden Plover flew north, 2 Goldcrest and 1 Pied Wagtail. With the sun shining today, It was nice to see a Mistle Thrush in song along with Blue and Great Tits starting to chase each other.
Sunday, 17 December 2017
I spent and hour and a half over at Nethergong this morning from 9am in the hope that the freezing conditions may have pushed a few birds into the area to be found. After parking up, I started my walk through the woods when I received a tweet from the owners alerting me that on there early morning walk, they had seen the Great White Egret. This bird seems to have settled in the Stour Valley / Nethergong area for the winter seemingly and it would be nice if it remains in the area for the new year. With the sun shining and the place to myself, I set off to hopefully find the Egret. Other birds noted on my way were c85 Lapwing in fields to the north, 1 Great spotted Woodpecker, 1 Green Woodpecker, 1 Kestrel, 3 Yellowhammer, 1 Siskin, 2 Reed Bunting, 1 Water Rail, 1 Kingfisher, 5 Mute Swan, 1 Cetti's Warbler, 1 Goldcrest, 5 Long tailed Tit, 1 Bullfinch, 1 Jay and 1 Grey Wagtail. As I approached the area the Egret was last seen in, the Great White Egret saw me before I saw it and took flight but thankfully, landed nearby on the top of a tree. I decided if I was going to get some shots of it, I would need to get a little closer so using various trees and bushes, I was able to get within a distance to take a few shots. I half expected it to fly off again but it stayed in the tree for the next twenty minutes where it happily preened and kept an eye on me which allowed my now freezing hands to keep warm as I pressed the shutter button. After this time, it took off and went and landed in a tree further away next to a Grey Heron where I left it in peace. Hopefully with the area being quiet from most people, it will remain in the area but its certainly good to have a bird of this quality on the site.
Great White Egret
Sunday, 26 November 2017
I was out of the house this morning at 6am where a few minutes later, I arrived at Nethergong where I parked up and sat in the warm car for c45 minutes hoping to hear a few Owls. It was a bit windier this morning making listening a challenge and despite a good time listening, I didn't hear any Owls. As I drove down the road just before 7am to park in Nethergong, there was 1 Little Owl sat on the sign. I spent a chilly 3 hours walking around the site a few times and managed to see or hear c12 Redwing, 2 Moorhen, 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Common Buzzard, 2 Pied Wagtail, 2 Kestrel, 11 Stock Dove, 2 Yellowhammer, 6 Fieldfare, 1 Cetti's Warbler, 1 Treecreeper, 1 Goldcrest and 2 Ring necked Parakeet. As I neared the small dried up pool, I could see 1 Grey Wagtail walking around the edges and a Water Pipit could be seen and heard circling around the area. After seeing one yesterday here for the first time, I was hoping it would land but after a fly around, it seemed to fly off calling still towards Grove Ferry. I carried on walking and a few minutes later, decided to look at the pool from another angle and there with the Grey Wagtail, was a Water Pipit. I was too far away for any shots and so at first, just took in the distant view to confirm the identification and then started to walk around the edge of the pool using what cover I could find. I eventually ended up within a distance I could at least get a record shot and fired off a few. It walked around for a few minutes before flying off again. An excellent bird to see and photograph on the site and I would imagine, the first time one has been photographed here. Other birds noted today were 1 Grey Heron, 7 Golden Plover flew north, 2 Mute Swan, 2 Stonechat, 2 Bullfinch, 3 Reed Bunting, 1 Bearded Tit, c5 Long tailed Tit, 1 Little Egret but no sign of the Great White Egret.