After deciding to go down to Denso Marston Nature Reserve on the last day of 2019 I was wondering if I was a bit early with posting my favourite shots of 2019 a few days ago. As usual I enjoyed the visit but the photos taken were nothing special. However I am going to stick some of them on my blog, so here we go.
As is often the case the first things to see were Mallards and Goosander. Goosander numbers are greatest over winter and male Goosander are back either from the moult trip to Norway or the Lakes or simply more evident on the river after their moult when they look similar to females.
Quite close to the Goosander was a Little Grebe. The last few times I have seen Little Grebe they have been close to other birds and this has made me notice how small they are. This time a Moorhen was on the river bank nearby. I think of Moorhen as small but the Little Grebe seemed to be about half the size of it. It’s a bit of a fuzzy photo because of the lack of light and the distance but worth sharing I think.
It is apparent that worn tyres have no scrap value because someone has put a fair amount of effort in getting these between the canal and river. Clearing up will also take a fair effort. There should be areas reserved where people can take their rubbish to dump it so that the clean-up isn’t difficult and so that those dumping don’t have to go to such lengths to hide what they are doing, they could even be called Waste Management Centres.
There were quite a few Redwing moving along the tops of the trees near the fence with Denso Marston. Lower down in the trees were plenty of Long Tail Tits swinging about the smaller branches. Bullfinch, Chaffinch, Robin, Jay, Crows, and even a Grey Heron were also in the trees. Blackbird were flitting about on the ground. I also spotted Grey Wagtail and Wrens along the stones at the edge of the river.
The bird feeding stations were busy with Nuthatch, Great Tit and Squirrels as well as Coal Tits, Dunnocks and Blue Tits. Two Roe Deer also sprinted across one of the fields opposite, spooking a Grey Heron as they ran.
On my way back to the gate I spotted a Song Thrush having a tug of war with a worm. The worm lost.
During my visit it was nice to have a chat with several locals that I have seen down there on many occasions.