Posted by: mynaturaldiary | April 19, 2018

Black (and white) beauties

Two rare black plumaged birds were at the RSPB reserve at Saltholme. 

The first, a pair of Black necked Grebes somewhere between winter and summer plumage.

Black-necked Grebe  (Podiceps nigricollis)

They are rare birds, but not as rare as the next one –  a Ringed necked Duck, which is an American visitor.

Ring-necked Duck (Aythya collaris)

It looks similar to the male Tufted Duck, except it has no tufts and also has a white end to its bill with a black tip.

In this video, you can see the Ring necked Duck with a male Tufted Duck alongside.

Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)

Keeping with the Black and white bird theme, here’s another well known bird, preening on a fence.

It’s a Magpie.

Magpie (Pica pica)

And now a more white bird than black, Avocets, who are the emblem of the RSPB.

Avocet (Recurvirostra avosetta)

They are very elegant when sweeping their bills through the water in search of invertebrates and insects.

A pure white bird next; the Little Egret. This feeds on fish that it catches with its sharp bill. See the videos below for examples of this, especially the last one.

Little Egret (Egretta garzetta)

Coming back into the colour spectrum, Black headed Gulls – white birds with brown heads are nesting on the island at Paddy’s Pool hide.

Black-headed Gull (Larus ridibundus)

They tend to their nests well.


Another gull on the reserve, one of our local top predators are Lesser Black-backed Gulls.

Lesser black-backed gull (Larus fuscus)

You can see it being mobbed by Black Headed Gulls here.

As you can see, the LBBG can’t withstand the fury of the BHG’s, finally flying away.

A Grey Heron was talking near Wildlife Watchpoint.

Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea)


Greylag Geese were all over the reserve.

Greylag Goose (Anser anser)

Shelduck were at Saltholme Hide.

Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)

Also Canada Geese were there.

Canada Geese (Branta canadensis)

Pochard were on Saltholme West.

Pochard (Aythya ferina)

Redshanks were by Saltholme Hide

Redshank (Tringa totanus)

as was a Little Ringed Plover

Little ringed plover (Charadrius dubius)

Meadow Pipits were plentiful

Meadow pipit (Anthus pratensis)

Goldfinch were on the feeders at Wildlife Watchpoint.

Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis)

Finally new lambs are on the reserve.



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