Witches Oak Water sightings by Colin Baxter

Fox and Pheasant have show down on the reserve...

Overcast but a better morning, with the cold northerly winds of the last few days diminishing – just about warm enough for a few Orange Tips & Speckled Woods to take wing.

As elsewhere, much of the activity came from the warblers, with good views of Garden, Lesser Whitethroat, Blackcap & Sedge gained around the reserve. Additionally, Oystercatchers, a Little Ringed Plover and Shelducks were evident. The best sighting of the day, though, came from a cock Pheasant and mate in a face-off with a fox on one of the paths. All seemed reluctant to move, no doubt weighing up what to do next, until I provided a suitable excuse for them to disappear rapidly in different directions.

Counts were: Tufted Duck 23, Mallard 24 plus one brood of 3 chicks, Shelduck 2, Coot 10, Moorhen 1, GC Grebe 8, Canada Goose 13, Greylag Goose 5, Mute Swan 7, Cormorant 12, BH Gull 5, Common Tern 2, Oystercatcher 4, Little Ringed Plover 1, Buzzard 1, Reed Bunting 4, Blackbird 1, Song Thrush 1, LT Tit 1, Pheasant 4, Garden Warbler 4, Blackcap 3, Willow Warbler 7, Whitethroat 2, Lesser Whitethroat 4, Cetti’s 6, Sedge Warbler 4, Reed Warbler 7