Sunday, 13 February 2011

February 13th 2011

Today should have been National Smew Day.

The forecast was dire with prolonged rain so arranged with Dave to have breakfast over looking the Welland Valley before deciding what to do. Luckily from our vantage point between Glaston and Moorcott we enjoyed 2 Red Kite, Buzzard and Raven while the locals gave us the history of the impressive Welland Viaduct (also called Harringworth Viaduct) we could see in the distance which is 1.166 km long with 82 arches, each of which has a 12m span and is the longest masonry viaduct across a valley in Britain.

Wikipedia photograp by S Harvey May 07
The Lincoln Imp from London to Lincoln pulled by 70013 Oliver Cromwell is due to go over 12th March - no published times yet.

We left as it tried to rain but pushed on to Rutland Water where there were a lot more birds about than I have seen of late with 11 Smew (9 redheads), 3 Little Egret, 2 Redshank, Curlew, Green Sandpiper, Oystercatcher, 2 Ringed Plover, Cettie’s Warbler, 3 Willow Tit, 40 Shelduck, 4 Goosander and 30 Golden Plover plus many duck but disappointed that the deep water hides overlooking the main bulk of the reservoir were closed off to Joe Public.
The rain arrived becoming cooler and very blustery as we called in on Pitsford and Ravensthorpe Reservoirs, Northamptonshire on our way home, Pitsford had 2 male and redhead Smew off the main causeway with long distant views of the over wintering Great White Egret while Ravensthorpe had a flock of 13 Smew (9 redheads).
Back home after checking his moth trap Dave had Common Quaker, Dark Chestnut and 2 Pale Brindled Beauty while mine had 3 Pale Brindled Beauty and 2 March Moth plus the treat of a male Sparrowhawk perched on the garden fence and managed to get of a couple of shots and a male Bullfinch on the feeders.


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