THURSDAY 10 DECEMBER
A much colder day, with temperatures struggling to reach 7 degrees C. A beautiful day though, with clear blue skies, all day sunshine and a cold NE breeze. Once again, I found myself back at Wilstone, where Roy had discovered two RUFF early on, roosting on the remaining section of spit visible from the jetty. They were not be found however.
(Joan Thompson and Mike Campbell also checking)
Checked all of the available mud on Wilstone. The BLACK-TAILED GODWIT was still present close to the Drayton Bank Hide, there were two COMMON REDSHANKS in the same area, a total of 14 COMMON SNIPE, 225 Lapwing and 473+ EUROPEAN GOLDEN PLOVERS.
A female COMMON GOLDENEYE was in 'Boathouse Corner', the juvenile GREATER SCAUP was in the SW quadrant, with Great Crested Grebes still numbering 12. Otherwise, very much the same as yesterday.
STARTOP'S END RESERVOIR
Great Crested Grebes (2), Mute Swan (6 adults), Common Teal (1 drake), Shoveler (4), Tufted Duck (31), Pochard (1 drake), Moorhen (12) and Redwing (8 in Hawthorns by sharp bend).
Reed-cutting for the Bitterns in progress and new rides being created. Little of note other than 14 Great Crested Grebes and an adult Mute Swan still. No Shoveler !
What a difference a day makes ! The numbers of EUROPEAN GOLDEN PLOVERS was much depleted today with just 412 in the Hoggs End area. The highlight was 64 EURASIAN SKYLARKS in stubble just NE of Beech Hyde Farm at TQ 112 090 and 5 Fieldfares feeding on Rowans by the farm.
LATIMER GREAT WATER
A pair of RING-NECKED PARAKEETS was enjoying the sunshine and taking up territory by a hole in a dead tree, 50 yards west of the Conference Centre.
The lake held 9 Mute Swans, 2 Little Grebes, 13 Tufted Ducks, 43 Coot and 17 Moorhens, whilst 123 Canada Geese were feeding in the field adjacent.
Just 1 LITTLE EGRET was east of Bois Mill, with the woodland surrounding Latimer Hall harbouring 2 Mistle Thrush, 9 Common Starlings, Great Spotted Woodpecker, 22 Redwings, 11 Goldfinch, 1 Song Thrush and a Nuthatch.
The 4 Mute Swans (2 adults and 2 first-winters) remain on Bois Mill Lake, with Chesham Fishing Lakes yielding the continuing Great Crested Grebe (the only wintering bird in the Recording Area), an adult Mute Swan, 11 Tufted Duck, just 1 drake Pochard, 34 Coot and a Song Thrush