The last few mornings I’ve spent birding on my local Patch at Staunton Harold Reservoir. The 2 immature Velvet Scoter are still around, giving occasional good views through the telescope, often they are some distance out on the water and can be difficult to locate. It’s great to be able to watch and observe these rare sea ducks, inland and only a few miles from my home. As the year comes to an end I’m trying my best to find a few more year ticks for the patch, but its proving ever harder and I doubt that I will reach the 100 barrier.
Discovering a Tree Sparrow at one of the feeding stations on the 27th December, was a great thrill and certainly brightened up the morning as it was the first I’ve seen at Staunton Harold Res for three years. They are now extremely rare birds in the area. The small yellow colouration to the base of the bill indicates an adult in winter plumage. Unlike its near relative the House Sparrow, the sexes of Tree Sparrow are identical and so it is difficult to age and sex them in the field. However, this particular bird appeared to be singing and so, for no other reason, I tentatively assumed it to be a male. My 96th species for the year at Staunton Harold Reservoir and so the 100 mark is so close, yet so far away.
Tree Sparrow – Above 3 images – Staunton Harold Reservoir, Derbyshire – Tony Davison©
House Sparrow – male – Above 2 images – Staunton Harold Reservoir – Tony Davison©
Blue Tit – Above 2 images – Staunton Harold Reservoir – Tony Davison©
Chaffinch – male – Staunton Harold Reservoir – Tony Davison©
Great Tit – Above 2 images – Staunton Harold Reservoir – Tony Davison©
Robin – Above 2 images – Staunton Harold Reservoir – Tony Davison©
Pied Wagtail – probably a first winter – Staunton Harold Reservoir – Tony Davison©