Thursday, 18 November 2010

Swallow Pond Whooper

I have frequented the Rising Sun Country Park more often recently, as i always do at this time of the year. I tend give Swallow Pond a bit of a wide berth during the summer months as it gets very busy with the kids being on holiday and the improved weather bringing more visitors in.
The Whooper in question is a juvenile which has been residing in the reed beds on the bank opposite the hide on the waggonway. The bird has been there for over a week, having been terrorised by the resident male Mute Swan who rules over his patch fervently. For the 30 minutes that i sat the Whooper kept peering over the top of the phragmites, stretching its neck like the periscope of a submarine, surveying the scene. It never ventured onto the water however and i presume the main reason it has been there for so long is that it is reluctant to do so which is possibly not allowing it to achieve lift off. I won't be back until next week and will be interested to see if it remains. The Mute Swan has in the past dispatched numerous ducks and geese and one of the locals was telling me he had a pair of juveniles pinned in the south west corner for a few hours on Monday. Numbers of ducks have been increasing on the pond with over 120 Widgeon sighted on Tuesday. Teal, Shoveller, Tufted and Pochard are showing well also. One other species of note, an Otter has also been appearing over the last few weeks occasionally.

My favourite resident of the Rising Sun made an appearance while i sat. I haven't seen him for some time so i was overjoyed when i spotted him.


  1. I hope your Whooper will stay a while, and the next time you could take a camera.

  2. Your mute swan is a bit of a bully by the sounds of it, good to see duck numbers increasing, I must make an effort and visit your patch sometime soon

  3. Thank you Bob,
    I did have my camera but the Whooper is over 80 metres distant.

  4. Hi Michelle,
    Yes, this Mute Swan has been on this pond for a number of years and "rules the roost".
    The Rising Sun is one of the many country parks situated on old mining works. Unfortunately it is not always appreciated by some of the locals.