29-12-15 West End: 1 Juvenile Great Northern Diver seen briefly and distantly before going missing. It probably swam back towards the dam end. (It was also reported on 28-12-15 at the dam end on Birdguides.) 2 Grey Heron – but one was white and is probably the same leucistic one that I saw back in June. 110+ Greylag, 4 Gadwall, 1M Pochard.
30-12-15 West End: 6 Gadwall, 3 Coot, 4 Moorhen, 55 Lapwing. On the feeders: 10+ Blue Tit, 4+ Great Tit, 4 Long-Tailed Tit, 1 Marsh Tit, 2 Coal Tit, 1 Nuthatch, 6+ Goldfinch, 8+ Chaffinch.
30-12-15 Whillet’s: 1 Buzzard, 1 Stock Dove, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 20+ mixed flock of Siskin with a couple of Lesser Redpoll and Goldfinch.
West End: A Pochard and an Egyptian Goose seen around midday.
Whillet’s Pool: A watch of the reed-bed at roosting time from 15:00 to 16:15 – 80 Reed Buntings and c.400 Starling were counted coming into the reed-bed to roost. Also seen in the area were – 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Buzzard, 1 Stock Dove, 1 Goldcrest and 1 Kingfisher. 2 Jay, 1 Treeceeper, 1 Green & 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker were all heard. 5 Fieldfare and1 Redwing flew over. Also over 50 Herring Gulls and hundreds of Black-headed Gulls flew towards the roost on reservoir. These gulls were not formally counted.
West End: 7 Gadwall, 7 Stock Doves.
Dam End: 1 Mandarin Duck and mixed flock of finches in the sailing club car park, including Goldfinch, Siskin and Lesser Redpoll.
Great Northern Diver seen from sailing club (mid-morning).
Dam End: Juvenile Great Northern Diver seen late afternoon mid reservoir area. Green Woodpecker in the Paddock. 23 Rooks around boatyard rookery. 26+ Great Crested Grebe. Gull roost at 16:00: 2000+ Black-headed Gull, 100+ Common Gull, 20+ Herring Gull, 1 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 1 Greater Black-backed Gull.
West End: 5 Gadwall, 1 Coot, c.150 Greylag Geese.
Whillet’s Meadows: 2 Jay, c.25 Fieldfare, c.150 Redwing, 2 Grey Heron flyover.
Whillet’s Reed-bed roost 15:15 to 16:15 : 47 Reed Buntings & c.200 Starlings roosted in reed-bed. Both a male and a female Sparrowhawk were hunting over the reed-bed but not together. At least 500 Black-headed Gull and 45 Herring Gulls flew over toward the dam end Gull roost.
(Juvenile) Great Northern Diver seen mid-morning in the middle of the reservoir near the dam end.
Goldfinches 20-12-15 by Bob Johnson
Bush Vetch 20-12-15 by Bob Johnson
A very unusual sight – Bush Vetch in flower in late December, obviously confused by all this mild weather, this is normally a spring up to autumn flowering plant. This specimen was seen growing along fence line by the road opposite Whillet’s Reed-bed view point.
Whillet’s: Watching the reed bed from the roadside from 15:30 to 16:15 – Sparrowhawk , 20 Redwings flying over, a party of about 8 Long-tailed Tits, a few 100 Black-headed Gulls flew over and about 600 Starlings came into roost. I did not pick out any Reed Buntings but I wonder if the Starlings put them off as they chuntered among themselves noisily in the reeds.