Thursday, 5 April 2012

Mandarins on show.

I'm pleased to report that the plumber was 'ace' yesterday so plenty of hot water on tap once more ..... so thanks Kevin. He also shares an interest in birds so I was able to help identify a raptor species he had seen recently while watching a Ring-necked Parakeet eyeing up the feeders in our garden.

With a very cold easterly wind and overcast sky I only managed an hour circumnavigating the 'Great Pond' on the patch around midday today. While driving towards the car park I spotted 5 raptors very slowly circling over the woodland ... obvious shape suggested Common Buzzard but one individual definitely had much longer wings and a more languid, slower wing beat. I was in a long queue of vehicles so couldn't stop at the roadside and by the time I had parked up they had disappeared eastwards so any positive ID goes unanswered!
One of the Canada Geese is always on sentry duty while its partner has a preen.

The visit didn't lead to any new sightings and the lighting across the water didn't help my photography efforts but I took a few shots of the Mandarin Ducks as they came a little bit closer than normal. Today there were six males but only one of the two females I have seen recently on view. Well at least the female was getting plenty of attention.

 Him and her playing follow the leader.

The list for today as follows:
Mandarin Ducks (6F and 1F);
Tufted Duck (now a pair on the pond so we may see a repeat of last years breeding);
Mallard (6), Coot (1), Moorhen (2), Canada Geese (6), Grey Heron (1);
Common Buzzard (5), Kestrel (1), Sparrowhawk (1) disrupting the local Woodpigeons;
Carrion Crow, Magpie, Blackbird, Robin, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Wren, Chaffinch, Chiffchaff (3) and Blackcap (1).

We are entertaining Anita's parents tomorrow so may not have time for a patch visit!     FAB.


  1. How tempting when you're so close/but so far away from what might've been the Common Buzzard shots. The Canada Geese, and the Mandrin Ducks are very striking. A lovely collage for your finale photo Frank.

  2. I've never seen a Mandarin Duck in the wild. What beauties!

  3. Glad to read that your all sorted, those male mandarins are handsome chaps aren't they, Linda

  4. Simply gorgeous image of the mandarin which I've not seen one in person so to speak. Gorgeous. Carol

  5. That's quite a list you have there. I didn't have nearly that much luck on our outing today! Great photos, FAB.

  6. I agree with you: really precious: marvelous photos...
    have a great Easter!

  7. Ah, the Mandarin Ducks, how can anyone say that it shouldn't being here, after about 200 years some people say that. Lovely ducks.

  8. Hi there, I remember seeing your blog a while ago and then forgetting to "follow" it, so I've only just checked back now :) Nice photos of a bird that looks so un-british it seems weird to see them in this country.

  9. One of my fave Frank, a super smart duck. We do wellfor them at Macclesfiel;d Forest reservoirs, had 20+ males a few years ago but they dont stick around once the females of laid. One female had 9 chicks while another had 7... and not a male in sight


  10. Love those Mandarin Ducks, really such exquisite beauty and one day, hopefully I would love to see. Happy Easter Frank~

  11. Hi Frank...beautiful pictures.. bonitos mandarines... Saludos desde Madrid...

  12. Thanks Carole M. I'm sure there will be other opportunities .... some time.

    Hi Theresa. They definitely brighten up my local pond.

    Hi Dave. Well you do have their close relative the Wood Duck.

    They sure are Linda.

    Thanks Carol.

    Well Mona ... every day is different.

    Thanks BShell.

    Cheers Bob.

    Hi Joe. Thanks for your revisit & hope to see you again.

    Hi Dave. I saw 10 males flying around on 31 Jan with 5 on the pond and only 1 female. The size of the brood is definitely linked to the high predation rate.

    Hi Mary. I also hope you get to see one of the colouful ducks one day.

    Hi Ana. Thanks for your visit and comments. Felices Pascuas para ti saludos. FAB.


I hope you enjoyed your visit and I always appreciate your comments and feedback.


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