Aylmerton Nature Diary

Friday 18th November

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Much colder this afternoon than earlier in the week, but still some pleasant sunshine for my afternoon stroll in the park. As I walked down the path through the shelter-belt I could see a couple of swans on the water meadow. I checked to see if they were anything other than Mute, but they weren’t. I assumed that they were visitors and had been forced up there by the ‘family from hell’. When I got to the lake, I was not surprised therefore to find the family party, of adults and five youngsters, in residence. I was more surprised though to see two splendid drake and a single female Mandarin – which, since their peak of nine a few weeks ago, have become much less regular. The male Wigeon was still present, along with about thirty Gadwall and eleven Tufted Duck. On my way past the viewing screen I observed movement out of the corner of my eye. Careful scrutiny of the marshy areas produced good views of a Water Rail, feeding in the stream. There was a nice female Kestrel in the dead tree at the end of the dam.

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