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This page gives you the latest bird and wildlife news from Chew Valley Lake (and sometimes elsewhere if there's anything good about). Records are taken from various sources and should be regarded as unconfirmed.

When you visit Chew, please remember that you'll need a permit to enter the lake enclosure or use the hides. You can get one from Woodford Lodge, the Tea Rooms, or by post. See my access page for full details. Seen anything good? Please contact me.

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  AUGUST 2013

A Wheatear and a Whinchat were at Heron's Green Pool this evening.

The male Ferruginous Duck was seen between Hollow Brook and Denny this morning; there was a male Garganey there also. Also in the same area was a possible male Lesser Scaup; sadly the mirrored glass windows in the new hide at Twycross make viewing of the east side of Denny virtually impossible now - keep your eyes out if it appears elsewhere.

A Curlew and a Whimbrel were heard calling in the vicinity of Twycross hide (formerly Bernard King hide); other waders around the lake today were four Black-tailed Godwits, seven Ruff, seven Green Sandpipers, two Common Sandpipers, three Redshank, four Snipe, two Greenshank and one Ringed Plover.

Single Ruff, Greenshank and Black-tailed Godwit were seen in a brief stop at Herriott's Bridge this evening, whilst elsewhere of note there was another Ruff and three Greenshank at Spring Bay, three Hobbies at Villice Bay and a Spotted Flycatcher behind the Blue Bowl.

The first Black Tern of the autumn - a juvenile - showed well in Heron's Green Bay this afternoon.

A Spotted Crake was seen again from Stratford hide at the end of Moreton Bank this morning. Elsewhere around the lake, 12 Little Egrets, three Curlew, seven Snipe, five Greenshank, nine Green Sandpipers, 16 Black-tailed Godwits, eight Common Sandpipers, one Garganey, nine Wigeon, eight Turnstones (Heron's Green Bay, moving west) and a juvenile Hobby.

Some good coverage, with plenty on the move today... nine Little Egrets, six Wigeon, one Garganey, 14 Black-tailed Godwits, one Oystercatcher, one Redshank, three Ruff, at least nine Ringed Plover, 21 Dunlin, 12 Green Sandpipers, eight Common Sandpipers, one Snipe and 56 Common Terns.

The terns and some of the waders were all moving west through the lake.

Still a few waders around the lake today - 17 Black-tailed Godwits, three Ruff, six Green Sandpipers, three Greenshank six Snipe and one Redshank. The Redstart was still along the old road at the parkland.

A flock of 14 Redshank was a very good count for Chew this morning, other birds around the lake were the male Ferruginous Duck (Heron's Green Bay still), two Yellow Wagtails, two Hobbies, four Green Sandpipers, one Wood Sandpiper, a Marsh Harrier, two Oystercatchers, two Common Terns and two Clouded Yellows.

A/the male Redstart was again along the old road from Nunnery car park to Villice hide this morning. Also two Garganey, one Dunlin, one Curlew, 10 Greenshank and 12 Black-tailed Godwits.

Four glimpses of a Spotted Crake this evening, with the following extras - four Common Terns, two Hobbies, 30 Sand Martins, eight Greenshank, seven Black-tailed Godwits, two Snipe, three Ruff, two Green Sandpipers, five Little Egrets and two Water Rails.

A male Silver-washed Fritillary on the buddleia at CVRS this morning was a rare Chew record.

More of the same today (no sightings of the Spotted Crakes) - the male Ferruginous Duck (Heron's Green Bay), seven Black-tailed Godwits, four Green Sandpipers, two Common Sandpipers, one Wood Sandpiper, five Snipe, four Common Terns, two Arctic Terns, and the family of seven Egyptian Geese.

A Spotted Crake was seen just once this morning from Stratford hide. Also seen from there were a juvenile Wood Sandpiper, four Green Sandpipers, one Dunlin, three Ringed Plover, a female Greater Scaup, two Snipe, two Common Terns and three Water Rails.

A male Redstart was seen along the old road from Nunnery car park to Villice Bay this afternoon; it may have been in the area all week. The male Ferruginous Duck was in Heron's Green Bay, also seen were one Yellow Wagtail, two Ringed Plover and the Wood Sandpiper. One of last night's Spotted Crakes was seen briefly at 15:50, then two seen on three occasions between 16:00 and 18:40.

Two Spotted Crakes were found this evening, on the reed shoreline at the south edge of Moreton Bank, viewed from Stratford hide looking left towards to far point. Nice to have a couple after a few lean years.

Additional selected highlights were three Garganey (Villice Bay), one Wood Sandpipers (Herriott's End), 16 Green Sandpipers, seven Little Egrets, six Black-tailed Godwits, five Common Sandpipers and nine Greenshank.

A flock of 20 Common Terns dropped in briefly during an early morning shower, otherwise more of the same on the wader front (mostly from BK hide) - seven Greenshank, 14 Green Sandpipers, two Dunlin, two Black-tailed Godwits, three Snipe and seven Common Sandpipers. The Garganey was still in Villice Bay.

A male Ferruginous Duck was seen in Villice Bay, then later in Stratford Bay. The usual male returning. The pick of the rest around the lake included a Pintail, one Garganey (Villice Bay still), 10 Black-tailed Godwits, three Greenshank, two Ringed Plover, 10 Common Sandpipers, nine Green Sandpipers, one Wood Sandpiper (Villice Bay), three Snipe, 10 Yellow-legged Gulls and two Yellow Wagtails.

Still a decent showing of waders considering that the water level still needs to drop a bit to show any decent shoreline: 11 Green Sandpipers, two Common Sandpipers, three Black-tailed Godwits and one each of Ringed Plover, Redshank and Curlew. Two Hobbies and eight Little Egrets were also seen.

A Crossbill at Moreton was a good highlight today - the species is rare at Chew and sightings are always very brief.

The other birds as follows - seven Little Egrets, one Garganey, two Wigeon, three Black-tailed Godwits , one Little Ringed Plover, two Dunlin, seven Green Sandpipers, two Common Sandpipers, two Snipe, three Mediterranean Gulls, one Common Gull, five Yellow-legged Gulls, two Kingfishers, c.20 Sand Martins, two Yellow Wagtails, two Hobbies and three Ravens.

A Turnstone was the highlight today, a few other waders were seen as well - 10 Common Sandpipers, six Green Sandpipers, one Whimbrel, three Dunlin and three Oystercatchers. Also 76 Teal, eight Little Egrets, one Common Tern and three Greater Scaup.

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