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Sightings archive

December 2016

  • In bold type are sightings that are uncommon either by rarity, date or number seen.
  • Click on photos for a larger version.

December 31st
Lea Farm GP – f. Shelduck in sw corner, Little Egret (R Marsh); 29+ Snipe (FJC)
Lavell’s Lake – Water Rail to right of Bittern hide, 2 Goldcrest & a Treecreeper in trees beside the Loddon (R Marsh); Coal Tit & 2 Nuthatch calling near feeders closest to Mill (FJC); Water Rail seen from Teal hide (J Morgan)

December 30th
Lea Farm GP – Water Rail calling from ditch in front of hide (P Scudamore)
Lavell’s Lake – Chiffchaff feeding near yellow gate, Water Rail calling from reeds around the frozen over Teal scrape (P Scudamore)
Sandford Lake – At least 2 Goldeneye, difficult to tell in foggy conditions (P Scudamore)

December 29th
Lavell’s Lake – Over 50% frozen, 100+ Redwing in to roost, 100+ Starling roosting in main island reeds (FJC)
Lea Farm GP – We have details back from the North Thames Gull Group on the ringed Herring Gull ‘S5MT’ seen 23rd, first ringed 7th Feb 2015 at Pitsea Landfill, Essex. Details at

December 27th
White Swan Lake – Bittern showed well at dusk, close to newly cut reed, before flying right to in line with pale tree trunk, 2 Water Rail and a Cetti’s Warbler heard, Little Egret flew over (FJC)

December 24th
Lea Farm GP – Peregrine over (D Rimes)
Lavell’s Lake – f. Bullfinch by Jerry’s bench (D Rimes)

December 23rd
Lea Farm GP – Jack Snipe, Kestrel, 20-30 Siskin flew south up Loddon (FJC); 15 Snipe, Little Egret (R Marsh); Water Rail under feeders (P Scudamore)
Lavell’s Lake – Sparrowhawk, 20 Snipe, 6 Siskin flew over Loddon towards mill (R Marsh); 2m. & 4f. Bullfinch near Bittern hide (T James)
Sandford Lake – pair Goldeneye, 5 Snipe (R Marsh)
Heron’s Water – m. Ferruginous Duck, Treecreeper (R Marsh)

December 22nd
Lavell’s Lake – Sparrowhawk (J O’Brien)
Sandford Lake – pair Goldeneye (J O’Brien)

December 21st
Lavell’s Lake – 40 Snipe around scrape at Bittern hide (FJC)

December 20th
Lea Farm GP – 7 Snipe, 1st winter Great Black-backed Gull, 2 Nuthatch, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Little Egret, 12 Common Gull, 3 Reed Bunting (R Marsh)
Lavell’s Lake – 34 Snipe, 68 Shovler (R Marsh)
Sandford Lake – 3 Snipe, m. Goldeneye, 76 Pochard (R Marsh); 2m. & 2f. Bullfinch feeding together (L Garner-Langham)

1st winter Gt Black-backed Gull, D Hampton

December 18th
Lea Farm GP – 33 Snipe, 59 Herring Gull (R Righelato)
Lavell’s Lake – 130+ Teal, 70+ Shoveler (FJC)
Black Swan Lake – m. Goldeneye (R Righelato)
Heron’s Water – m. Ferruginous Duck (R Righelato)

December 17th
Lavell’s Lake – Barn Owl in box (FJC)

December 16th
Lavell’s Lake – Coal Tit on feeder across Loddon, 31 Snipe, 120+ Teal (FJC)

December 15th
Lea Farm GP – 2 Little Egret, 4 Snipe, Water Rail, 6 Herring Gull, 7 Common Gull (R Marsh)
Lavell’s Lake – 33 Snipe, Water Rail, 4 Reed Bunting, Ring-necked Parakeet, Little Egret (R Marsh); Kingfisher (G Emmett); Sparrowhawk (D Hampton)
Sandford Lake – 2 Snipe, Goldcrest, Chiffchaff (R Marsh)

December 14th
Lavell’s Lake – 41 Snipe from Bittern hide (FJC); Buzzard on the bund (T Jones)

December 13th
Lea Farm GP – 2 Little Egret, 9 Herring Gull, 19 Common Gull, 13 Snipe (FJC)
Lavell’s Lake – 33 Snipe from Bittern hide, Chiffchaff near yellow gate to Sandford Lane (FJC)
Sandford Lake – Cetti’s Warbler in front of hide, 3 Snipe, Treecreeper (R Marsh)

December 12th
Lea Farm GP – Little Egret, pair Goldeneye (P Scudamore)
Lavell’s Lake – 14 Snipe from Bittern hide, Water Rail flew across Teal scrape (P Scudamore)

December 11th
Lavell’s Lake – 150+ Shoveler, 130+ Teal, 21 Snipe (FJC), Cetti’s Warbler at Teal hide (J McGowan)
Sandford Lake – drake Scaup, m. & f. Goldeneye (J McGowan)

December 10th
Lavell’s Lake – 140+ Teal, 19 Snipe, 3 Reed Bunting (R Marsh)

December 9th
Lavell’s Lake – drake Scaup in front of Bittern hide, Jack Snipe, Grey Wagtail (FJC) 11 Snipe, Redwing, 11 Fieldfare over car park, Sparrowhawk (R Marsh)
Sandford Lake – f. Bullfinch, 2 Cetti’s Warbler heard (P Bright-Thomas)

Drake Scaup @ Lavell’s, G Emmett

Mistle Thrush @ Lavell’s, G Emmett

December 8th
Lea Farm GP – 2 Snipe, 9 Common Gull, 3 Herring Gull, Water Rail under feeders (R Marsh)
Lavell’s Lake – 6 Snipe (R Marsh)
Black Swan Lake – Grey Wagtail in car park (R Marsh)
Sandford Lake – drake Scaup still present, Cetti’s Warbler (R Marsh)

Drake Scaup close to Sandford hide, R Marsh

December 7th
Lea Farm GP – Jack Snipe, Little Egret (FJC)
Lavell’s Lake – Fieldfare (FJC)
Sandford Lakedrake Scaup – first record since 4/8/09 (I Paine)

December 6th
Lavell’s Lake – Buzzard, Reed Bunting (G Emmett)

December 5th
Lea Farm GP – 4 Snipe over hide > landfill, Water Rail under feeders, 4 Reed Bunting, 2 Little Egret (R Marsh); Little Owl in usual oak on landfill again (FJC); 3 Black Swan flew in p.m. (R Righelato)
Lavell’s Lake – 2 Water Rail, 2 Bullfinch (G Emmett)
Black Swan Lake – 20 Common Gull (FJC)
Sandford Lake – 3 Black Swan, 1 m. & 3 f. Goldeneye (R Marsh)

Drake & 3 female Goldeneye, R Marsh

December 4th
Lea Farm GP – 3 Raven over landfill east of Lea Farm, Little Owl in usual oak on landfill (FJC); 25 Herring Gull, 3 Snipe, 2 Little Egret, Water Rail (G Emmett)
Lavell’s Lake – Meadow Pipit on wires in car park field, 600+ Black-headed Gull, 6 Common Gull (FJC)
Black Swan Lake – 12 Common Gull, 1000+ Black-headed Gull (FJC)

December 3rd
Lea Farm GP – 10+ Meadow Pipit on landfill, 2 Mistle Thrush, 3 Fieldfare, 60+ Redwing, 3 Little Grebe on the Loddon at the green bridge, 3+ Ring-necked Parakeet, Song Thrush (FJC); Snipe, Water Rail heard (R Marsh)
Lavell’s Lake – 25+ Golden Plover circling beyond landfill towards Borough Marsh, 110 Shoveler (FJC); Jack Snipe (J Bishop); Snipe (R Marsh)
Black Swan Lake – 2 Chiffchaff (FJC)
White Swan Lake – Bittern centre of reedbed at dusk (FJC)
Sandford Lake – 1 m. & 3 f. Goldeneye (R Marsh); Cetti’s Warbler, Water Rail heard (J Bishop)

December 2nd
Lea Farm GP – 2 Little Egret, 4 Common Gull, female Pintail flew off North, 2 Raven over SE, 1 Siskin with Goldfinch flock in Alder just beyond Loddon river junction (FJC)
Lavell’s Lake2 Blackcap in Willow nearest to lay-by, then flew over backwater (FJC)
Sandford Lake – 1 m. & 3 f. Goldeneye (J Vaughan)

December 1st
Lea Farm GP – Little Egret, 6 Snipe, 4 Reed Bunting, 2 Nuthatch, 4 Common Gull, Herring Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull (R Marsh)
Lavell’s Lake – Jack Snipe, Common Gull (R Marsh); 91 Teal, 116 Shoveler (FJC)
Sandford Lake – 1 m. & 2 f. Goldeneye (R Marsh); Chiffchaff, 30+ Shoveler (FJC)
White Swan Lake – pair Mandarin Duck (FJC); Little Grebe (R Marsh)
* Today Fraser has received info from the North Thames Gull Group of another ringed Black-headed Gull (2FKF) recorded at Bittern hide on 30/11/16, details can be seen here.