Whooper Swan, Felbrigg Lake
After the cold night I thought I’d take a walk down to Felbrigg Lake – I’m glad I did. There were a good number of Teal on the Water Meadow – I counted around 60 and the male Wigeon was still present, along with a couple of Snipe. As I approached the Lake, along the eastern edge, I was pleased to see some swans, having missed them on my first visit of 2016, a couple of days ago. There was quite a bit of noise and chasing going on and I quickly realised two species were involved – the regular family party of six Mute Swan and two visitors. I could clearly see yellow bills and it didn’t take long to establish that they were Whooper Swan, the larger of the two ‘winter swans’. They continued to get hassled by the male Mute before finally flying off north, at about 10.00. This is my first record since the long-staying individual of a few years ago. Other wildfowl interest came in the form of a male Pochard and, in amongst the dozen or so Tufteds, the returning Aythya hybrid, probably a TuftedxFerruginous.
Probable TuftedxFerruginous hybrid