Thursday 15 September 2016

A summery half day at The Cotswold Water Park

We headed to the Waterhay car park.

Before we had really started a kestrel flew across the car park, not the only one of the day – I think they must be having a good year!

As we headed along the first footpath, we encountered a mix of small birds including chiffchaff, blue tit, great tit, wren, an elusive goldcrest and robin.

A young wren

We briefly popped through the hedge to look at lake 82, where we had another view of a kestrel and on the lake there were tufted duck, great crested grebe feeding their young, mallard, coot and mute swan, also flying overhead were a number of Canada goose and cormorant as well as a single greylag goose.

As we passed the buddleia bushes for the first time we saw a couple of chiffchaff, but not many butterflies.

As we reached the long lake 68a/b we saw a number grey heron and little egret dotted along the edge of the lake.

There were also more mute swan and cormorant, a lot more cormorant in fact. We also saw some black-headed gull and lesser black-backed gull mixed in the throng.  Along the edge of the lake was a moorhen or two feeding then we were lucky enough to spot a kingfisher sitting quietly in a lake-edge bush – brilliant!

Kingfisher with a moorhen hiding below

Around the same time we picked up our first comma of the day as the sun started to warm the day up.

We worked our way along the edge of the lake picking up additional bird species like pochard and common tern on and over the water. In the hedgerows we picked up long-tailed tit,  blackbird, song thrush, cetti’s warbler, blackcap and some all to elusive reed warbler and whitethroat. Finally a couple of green woodpecker were seen making swift exits from the lake edge ahead of us!

Butterfly were much more showy as the sun continued to warm the day, several more comma were seen as well as a number of red admiral, a small tortoiseshell, a lovely painted lady and a fair few green-veined white