Sunday, 19 April 2009

19th April 2009

Still tired from all my recent birding activities, I needed to go to the lakes today regardless because it was a WeBS "priority date". Terry's Pool was quiet, but at Engine Pool I saw 2 newly arrived Mute Swans (the other 2 must've been hiding or gone), 2 Greylag Geese and 5 terns fly over very briefly. An experienced birder I met at the causeway thought they were all Common Terns, as did I (I assume he'd been watching them for longer than me). At Windmill Pool, saw 4 terns on the buoys, but seeing the sailing boat club gates open and people there, I was anxious to finish the pool's counts before the boats were put out; I was really pleased to locate a summer-plumaged Little Grebe amongst the vegetation along the west side (perhaps only the second record of this species at the lakes this year). With the counts over, I passed Terry's Pool on the way home and saw that the male Pochard was there (damn boats!).

I'm getting to really dislike fishermen. I've seen piles of litter left by them, and fishing line on the ground and dangling from trees on numerous occasions. You might remember I once found a Wren dangling from a twig via fishing line, but I don't think I've mentioned that I've also seen a swimming duck (rather than a fish) get caught at the end of a fisherman's line, and a gull and a Woodpigeon in flight with fishing line trailing behind them. Also, some fishermen leave their gear on the path, which is particularly annoying if I'm pushing my bike, and most seem to ignore anyone at the lakes who isn't fishing. I once had a fisherman who back casted as I was cycling behind him along the road and obviously hadn't checked for people beforehand, though luckily for me the hook missed me by a few metres. Anyway, this morning as I was trying to count the waterbirds at Engine Pool, I heard a loud, obviously man-made "koh" behind me and turned around to see a bunch of chav "fishermen" walking passed, grinning. One of them mockingly said something about "a fine specimen", causing the others to laugh. I felt like telling the mindless yob that "specimen" is not a birding term, and to go back to McDonald's, but I said nothing. Hopefully he caught the turtle and got a finger bitten off!!! I can't stand people who spoil other people's enjoyment, and thought it was bad enough birding along roads with the idiot drivers who sound their horn just as they pass.

Apologies for the lateness of this post, and the posts for the 16th, 17th and 18th. Lately, I've been feeling pretty drained and haven't been at my computer much.

M.P. Griffiths


Reg The Birder said...

What annoyed me with the fishing fraternity last week was how they have to bellow to each other when they are only feet away.

Enough with the booming already!

Wish I'd seen the little grebe. Good spot.

Hope you get some Arctic terns and that damned oystercatcher soon too.

Matthew Griffiths said...