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November 2016 Diary
Sightings, news and photos from Chasewater and surrounding areas.
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For latest bird news in the local area see Staffordshire Bird News (external link)

 

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Tues 1st No records
Wed 2nd 5 red-head Goosanders, 4 Greylag Geese, 2 pairs of Stonechats and 3 Chiffchaffs were present (GE, PW). The cattle on the north shore have been removed today.
Thurs 3rd 9 Whooper Swans flew over at around mid-day (PW).
Fri 4th Four drake Goosanders flew in and 9 Cormorants, 2 Buzzards, a Kestrel, 3 Stonechats, a Chiffchaff and a Common Darter were present (GE, PW). Some of the effects of all the seasonal disturbance will, no doubt, be reflected by next week's WeBS count but such on-site bonfires and fireworks could have a wider negative impact upon the heathland SSSI.
Bonfire on the sailing shore (GE) Scrub clearance has started on the north shore. Male Stonechat (GE)
Sat 5th Three Stonechats and a Weasel were on the North Heath (PW). A duck Common Scoter was present and the gull roost held an adult Caspian Gull, 2cy Yellow-legged Gull and an adult Mediterranean Gull (JA).
Sun 6th Two (adult, sub-adult) Caspian Gulls, a 2cy Yellow-legged Gull and an adult Mediterranean Gull roosted.
Mon 7th Three Stonechats were on the North Heath (PW).
Tues 8th No records
Wed 9th At dusk 3 Dunlin and a Knot were on the Sailing Shore and a Jack Snipe flew in to feed on the shore after dark (PW).
Thurs 10th

Common Scoters (GE)

Whooper Swans (GE)

Five Whooper Swans were present throughout much of the day, finally departing to the south at 15:17 (PW, GR, GE). Two juvenile Common Scoters were also present and other totals for the monthly WeBS count were: 95 Mute Swans, 25 Canada Geese, 18 Wigeon, 2 Gadwall, 15 Teal, 135 Mallard, 4 Shovelers, 1 Pochard, 573 Tufted Ducks, 23 Goldeneye, 12 Goosanders, 21 Cormorants, 2 Grey Herons, 8 Little Grebes, 27 Great Crested Grebes, 915 Coot, 18 Moorhens and 77 Lapwings. Only the Wigeon numbers appear to have been affected by the recent fireworks (GE).
Fri 11th A 02:00 drive around the Chasewater area produced 2 Barn Owls, a Long-eared Owl and a Tawny Owl. Later in the day the 2 Common Scoters were seen in Fly Bay and the gull roost held an adult Caspian Gull and a 1cy Yellow-legged Gull.
Sat 12th The 2 Common Scoters were present and the roost held an adult Caspian Gull and 2 (adult, 2cy) Yellow-legged Gulls (JA).
Sun 13th The 2 Common Scoters were north of the Island and 6 (3 adult, 4cy, 3cy, 2cy) Yellow-legged Gulls, an adult Caspian Gull and 2 adult Mediterranean Gulls roosted.
Mon 14th A brief scan from the dam at 14:00 produced the 2 Common Scoters, 24 Goldeneye, 17 Cormorants and a Chiffchaff (GE).
Tues 15th No records
Wed 16th An adult Caspian Gull and a 3cy Yellow-legged Gull roosted.
Thurs 17th The adult Caspian Gull roosted again. A Lesser Black-backed Gull found dead on the west shore had been ringed as a nestling on 24th July 2013 at Banks Marsh on the Ribble Estuary, Lancashire.
On Cuckoo Bank there were 15 Fieldfares, about 30 Redwings, 18 Skylarks, 5 Meadow Pipits, 4 Bullfinches, 4 Goldcrests, 2 Reed Buntings, a mixed flock of around 30 Siskins and Lesser Redpolls and a Peregrine (GHa).
Fri 18th The adult Caspian Gull and 2 (adult, 3cy) Yellow-legged Gulls roosted.
Sat 19th A Black Swan was north of the Island and 23 Goosanders were on The Swag. The gull roost held an adult Caspian Gull, an adult Yellow-legged Gull and 2 adult Mediterranean Gulls.
Twelve Waxwings were seen along Burntwood Road, Norton Canes.
Sun 20th The gull roost held 3 (adult, 3cy, 1cy) Caspian Gulls, 2 (adult, 3cy) Yellow-legged Gulls and an adult Mediterranean Gull.
Mon 21st No records
Tues 22nd
Common Scoter (GE)

An immature Common Scoter was on the main lake, at least 16 Goosanders and 25 Goldeneye were present and a Raven flew south (GE).
Wed 23rd On Cuckoo Bank there were 13 redpolls, 3 Siskins, 3 Yellowhammers, 9 Skylarks, about 150 Fieldfares and 80 Redwings (GHa).
Thurs 24th The gull roost included a 1cy Caspian Gull, 2 adult Yellow-legged Gulls and an adult Mediterranean Gull.
Fri 25th
A juvenile Red-breasted Merganser was near the dam with several Goosanders around mid-day (PW) and in Fly Bay at 16:15. The gull roost held 2 (1cy, adult) Caspian Gulls and 3 (2cy, 2 adults) Yellow-legged Gulls.
  Red-breasted Merganser and Goosander (PW)
Sat 26th The Red-breasted Merganser was again feeding near the dam along with around 4 Goosanders and a Raven flew over to the east. There was also a great deal of activity on The Swag where at least 21 Goosanders and 13 Cormorants were constantly diving for fish and 2 Kingfishers were also present (GE, PW). An adult Caspian Gull and adult Yellow-legged Gull roosted.
Red-breasted Merganser with its catch of a very spiney dorsel-finned Ruffe (PW)
Sun 27th The Red-breasted Merganser was still present off the dam. Two (adult, sub-adult) Caspian Gulls and 4 (3 adults, 3cy) Yellow-legged Gulls roosted.
Mon28th The Red-breasted Merganser was still near the pier and a flock of 11, probably all juvenile, Common Scoters was in the middle of the lake (GE, PW). Later in the afternoon 12 Common Scoters were present and the roost held 2 (adult, 3cy) Caspian Gulls and 2 adult Yellow-legged Gulls.
The very distant Common Scoter flock; all flapping birds appeared pale breasted and therefore juvenile (GE).
Tues 29th A juvenile Velvet Scoter was first seen before mid-day (VT, JT) and was present off the Sailing Club at 16:20. This is the first site record since 5 immatures occurred on November 21st 2005. The Red-breasted Merganser flew from the dam area to Target Point at 15:30. Two (adult, 3cy) Caspian Gulls and 2 adult Yellow-legged Gulls roosted.
Wed 30th
The juvenile Velvet Scoter and Red-breasted Merganser were present throughout the day along with over 30 Goosanders, 45 Teal and 28 Cormorants. A pair of Stonechats, 25 Lesser Redpolls, a Grey Wagtail and a remarkable group of 5 Chiffchaffs and a Goldcrest were feeding together in the birches along the Sailing Shore (GE). Difficult viewing conditions led to only 2 (adult, 2cy) Yellow-legged Gulls and an adult Caspian Gull being seen in the roost.
Juvenile Velvet Scoter (GE)
One of the Chiffchaffs appeared very grey but it was not heard to call. Well worth looking out for (GE).