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May 162016
 The seven club members who turned up for the visit to DWT Willington last weekend (15/6) could be excused for thinking they’d switched continents as a Black Swan swam serenely in front of the newly-constructed hide overlooking the reserve’s main pool.
Black Swan

Black Swan

 Not counting this (probable) escapee, the group saw a collective total of around 45 species in the two and a half hours spent along the linear route that ends up at the hide. 
Several warblers were heard if not always seen, including Cetti’s for which Willington is something of a stronghold.
Reed and Sedge Warblers kept up a chattering among the reeds and low willows, while Chiffchaffs, Whitethroats and Garden and Willow Warblers periodically announced their presence.
Reed Warbler

Reed Warbler

Hunting above the reserve were Swallows and Martins, later joined by a sizeable contingent of Swifts.   
A distant Cuckoo was heard twice, Buzzard and Kestrel were the only raptors seen, but it was the water loving species – waders, wildfowl, gulls and terns – that stole the show.
Great Crested Grebe

Great Crested Grebe

The full list of birds seen by one or more of the party were as follows:
Swallow, Sand Martin, House Martin, Blackbird, Wood Pigeon, Chiffchaff, Wren, Song Thrush, Great Tit, Garden Warbler, Cuckoo, Chaffinch, Cetti’s Warbler, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Bullfinch, Greenfinch, Sedge Warbler, Buzzard, Robin, Kestrel, Whitethroat, Canada Goose,
Moorhen, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Mute Swan, Cormorant, Reed Bunting, Common Tern, Swift, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Black-headed Gull, Grey Heron, Magpie, Coot, Willow Warbler, Gadwall, Lapwing, Long-tailed Tit, Great Crested Grebe, Redshank, Dunlin, Oystercatcher, Egyptian Goose and Carrion Crow.
Gary Atkins.

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