Lackford, December 2016

SWT Reserve Lackford – December 2016

An unseasonably warm, 14C, December day made a pleasant change for our end of year walk around this lovely local reserve.

On arrival at 9:30, flocks of lapwings and redwings could be seen flying around the reserve, soon to be followed by a busy flock of siskins in the alder trees alongside the sailing lake. Here too we searched the lake for goldeneye without any sightings but did locate a lovely drake bird on exiting Paul’s Hide. A feature of The Slough wasthe sizeable number of lapwing and teal plus the usual ducks, cormorants and so on. We were impressed with the new view from the Bernard Tickner Hide which has been opened out to give another view of the Slough.

No luck with kingfisher from the double decker hide so we walked through the woodand round to Bess’s Hide. Nothing to add here but the chainsaws of the Vols, whilstdoing vital coppicing of alder trees and scrub tidying, perhaps kept bird numbers down in this area.

Sightings: 35 species total

Robin, dunnock, wren, blackbird, blue tit, great tit, long tailed tit, marsh tit, chaffinch, starling, siskin, redwing, crow, woodpigeon, kestrel

Moorhen, coot, grey heron, little egret, goldeneye, canada goose, greylag goose, little grebe, great crested grebe, cormorant, teal, mallard, gadwall, shoveller, shelduck, wigeon, tufted duck, lapwings, black headed gull, mute swan

Our Christmas lunch was once again, enjoyed at Bury St Edmunds Golf Club; thanks to Sheila for the arrangements. This was preceded by the planning meeting for our 2017 activities. This always leads to lively discussion but we more or less nailed the programme down within the allotted hour. A few things to be confirmed, including our offer of two places to Fred and Sheila Hawthorn from our current waiting list. We hope they accept and look forward to welcoming them to the group.

We agreed that our varied and interesting 2016 programme was enjoyed by all members and we look forward to another successful year of birding in 2017.

Merry Christmas to all Peter Heath