Local Saturday

On my way home from shopping in Marlborough this morning I made a quick detour onto the Downs at Ogbourne St Andrew. Plenty of activity with sixteen species noted in less than quarter-of-an-hour. Best birds were a couple of Tree Sparrows with a good supporting cast of Corn and Reed Bunting, Greenfinch and Yellowhammer. A Red Kite was drifting overhead upsetting the corvids. This afternoon I spent a couple of hours at Coate Water. Plenty of waterfowl on the main lake with good numbers of Coot. Also Gadwall, Tufted and Wigeon along with Great Crested Grebe and four Little Grebe. I had a good view of a Kingfisher as it flew along the lake and across the causeway. From a  people busy first hide there were two more Kingfisher sightings including one which had caught the largest fish i have ever seen a Kingfisher have. After bashing it several times on a branch it somehow managed to swallow it. A Cetti’s Warbler was heard from here. ALong the path to the hide I had my fist viewing of the impressive Hornets nest that has been built up on a nestbox. Quite a few Hornets around also.

From the second hide there were forty or so Gadwall, seven Shovelers and a few Teal. A Water Rail was heard and eventually seen, a Wiltshire year tick for me and Little Grebe made five for the day. Flyover Jay and Sparrowhawk gave a final total of thirty-five species. Also seen were a Roe Deer, and Speckled Wood, Red Admiral and Small Tortoishell butterflies.

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