27th of October 2012.

WWT – Brandon Marsh.

Species seen 37.

On a fabulous Autumnal day a visit to Warwickshire Wildlife Trust Brandon Marsh is a must! Arriving at midday there wasn’t a cloud in the sky; however there was a definite chill in the air due to the breeze and once the sun had gone down it very quickly became extremely cold.

Two pairs of Goldeneye were the first birds of note seen on East Marsh Pool; all looked fabulous with the sunshine reflecting off their plumages. The pool already had a great many Widgeon with more Black Headed Gulls continuing to arrive on and around the scrape area. Other gulls were, Yellow Legged, Herring, Common and Lesser Black Backed.

A group of Swans that were all napping to the left of East Marsh hide soon revealed that they were not Mute Swans, but, Whooper Swans! Ten Whooper Swans is a first for me at Brandon Marsh as I’ve only seen a pair before.

Other birds of note were, Sparrowhawk, Buzzard, Kestrel, Fieldfares and Redwings. Before leaving I took in the Newlands path towards the golf course where over the reed beds a good number of Starlings were starting their Ariel display before going to roost.

13th of October 2012.

Warwickshire Wildlife Trust – Brandon Marsh.

A late afternoon visit to Brandon Marsh in the hope of seeing a Barn Owl again at dusk, as last Saturday, however, there was no sign of it today.

East Marsh is now host to a great many Greylag and Canada Geese, in addition to these was a single Egyptian Goose along with a rather strange looking hybrid goose!

Looking upwards, a Kestrel, Buzzard and Sparrowhawk were viewed, however what happened later sent everything up from East Marsh Pool.

Taking a few seconds to locate what had disturbed everything, I quickly took sight of a raptor which at first glance, I thought was a Buzzard. The bins soon had the ID confirmed; it was in fact a Marsh Harrier.

Minutes after it disappeared over the farthest part of Newlands, the hide door opened and in walked friend and fellow birder Helen. I quickly told her of the sighting and right on cue this magnificent bird showed up. We both ran to the Carlton hide where we were greeted by George and Steve, two other regular birders. We were all treated to superb views of the bird flying high, then low over the reed beds. It finally went to ground at 5.45pm and was not seen again, suggesting that it may stay a while? The photograph is a very distant record shot.