Sunday, 5 November 2017

WHOOPER SWANS in Hertfordshire.

Great to get a text from my good friend Ron Cousins early this morning stating that two WHOOPER SWANS had been found on Stanstead Innings in Stanstead Abbotts, Hertfordshire. Local birder, Jane Free, who walks the gravel pits every weekend and some evenings in the week had found them and had called Ron to confirm the ID. 

ID can never really be confirmed over the phone with a call or by text so I decided to head down there straight away to see them and hopefully get photos. On my arrival Barry Reed also a local Hertfordshire birder and friend was just leaving and had already confirmed the ID. Jane Free tweeting the presence of them to a wider audience on twitter at 8:43am.


The beautiful Swans were nearly always around the Southern end of the North lake and were occasionally flying around before landing back on the lake. They were being harassed by the local MUTE SWANS from time to time and were calling a fair bit. What a great sound to hear on a Hertfordshire Lake!

The lake at Stanstead Innings is mainly used as a boating lake so I assumed the birds wouldn't hang around once the boats were out on the lake. The birds did depart around 10am, being seen by Ron who called Barry who was waiting at Amwell just to the North in the hope that they would fly over that way.

The Swans circled round a few times and were seen from Amwell before flying off strongly South West. The map shows the distribution of the Swans with Yellow showing thier summer range and Blue showing the winter range. Green is where they can be found all year round. 

Another delight was this GREAT CRESTED GREBE with what I believe is a small PERCH. All in all a wonderful sunny morning and really great to catch up with some rare Swans close to home. 


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