migrants ... rare ones

NoCarpPlease

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as a bit of a closet "twitcher" i was pleased and surprised to see that a great white egret has taken up residence on a lake that I pass on the drive to work. I've spotted it from the car most days in the last fortnight - but it has flown away when I've walked along the road to take a photo..
It's the first that I've seen (unlike the little egrets that have become widespread in the last 25 years).

Basically a pure white heron with a yellow tinged bill.

what interesting feathered creatures have you spotted in this country (whilst fishing or not)?

Whilst fishing - barn owl quartering the meadow opposite and a water rail picking it's way over dead winter reeds are my favourites. I've only seen a water rail that one occasion as well!
 

squimp

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Like you I’ve only seen one water rail.

2x bitterns tucked away in big reed beds. In the past I had even been to RSPB Minsmere to try and spot one.

Various Divers on early morning winter pike trips.

My favourite is watching Hobby’s (spelling ?) spiralling high over big gravel pits on a summer afternoon. Gorgeous.
 

The Runner

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Saw a Great White Egret on a gravel pit near Milton Keynes about 20 years ago, the only one I've seen in this country.
Rarest thing seen when fishing was on the little R Whitewater near Duke of Wellington Country park. Noticed a bird in the top of a bare tree about 50 yards away across the river, thought it was a Mistle Thrush at first but something about the silhouette wasn't right; after a while it took off, passed me, and landed in another tree about 20 yards behind. Great Grey Shrike.
Possibly even rarer was a Hooded Merganser in my swim in a match on the Ivel at Blunham but apparently it could have been an escape; had a steady stream of twitchers turning up in case it wasn't....

Following my move North, quite regularly see Sea Eagles now while I'm fishing. Had a whale in my swim at Kilmaluag and another at Staffin last year as well.
 

NoCarpPlease

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Not whilst fishing - but I remember a Great Northern Diver on the gravel pit at what is now Harrold country park in Bedfordshire. Loads of twitchers turned up to see it - with it coming in really close to the bank - oblivious to the attention.
I walked my dog there every day and it stayed for over a month.

Sea Eagles must be pretty amazing. i'd love to live up where you do, but keep the access to the midlands rivers for the fishing!
 

Flathead

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Great Egrets and Cattle Egrets are regulars in the fens now...both have taken up residency at Welney Wetlands trust reserve.

Little Egrets are pretty common all over

Common Cranes are also regulars with flocks of up to 30 or more at times
 

squimp

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It’s quite amusing when a hoard of twitchers turn up at lunchtime to try and spot a rare bird with their £1k binoculars. The very same bird was swimming around 10m from the bank when you the angler arrived at 7am...I tend to keep quiet when they ask what I have seen.
 

RedhillPhil

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We used to get all sorts of interesting off-route migrants in West Cornwall. One of the more interesting ones was a white pelican that took up residence on Drift reservoir.
 

peardrop

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Saw a glossy ibis three years ago, got a half reasonable pic too.Shame its lost on an external hard drive somewhere.
 

Dave Spence

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We had a white sparrow living in the garden for most of the summer, it just disappeared (we have a lot of sparrowhawks round here). Got a couple of pics though.

This thread shows what a great sport angling is; if you don't wear blinkers, and get off the beaten track a bit who knows what you might see.
 

TonyA

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as a bit of a closet "twitcher" i was pleased and surprised to see that a great white egret has taken up residence on a lake that I pass on the drive to work. I've spotted it from the car most days in the last fortnight - but it has flown away when I've walked along the road to take a photo..
It's the first that I've seen (unlike the little egrets that have become widespread in the last 25 years).

Basically a pure white heron with a yellow tinged bill.

what interesting feathered creatures have you spotted in this country (whilst fishing or not)?

Whilst fishing - barn owl quartering the meadow opposite and a water rail picking it's way over dead winter reeds are my favourites. I've only seen a water rail that one occasion as well!

Last Autumn I had a Wryneck eating ants on my patio.
 

crumpercatcher.

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See Barn owls most mornings while driving to work, regularly see snipe at this time of year. Peregrine falcons, sparrowhawks and Merlins. Little egrets are quite common.

Have seen a Bittern while fishing two different waters and one water rail. Also see ring ouzel while fishing a quiet upland water.
 

G0zzer2

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I once had a robin and a wren both come up to me while I was fishing at Decoy, and both took maggots only inches from my feet. I wasn't surprised about the Robin, but I was about the wren. It was bitterly cold, so it must have been hungry.

Red Kites are common around here, but to see one only 15 yards away on the ground as I did at Pidley was amazing - they are very, very big.

As for voles, they are supposed to be disappearing at a fast rate - whoever wrote that has never been to a commercial fishery!
 

Geoff P

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When I lived in the Rhondda I used to fish Pysgodlyn Mawr, a lake in the middle of forestry commission land. It is designated a SSSI site known for rare dragonflies.

One morning three people came onto the lake asking if I minded them walking round as they tried to get a photo of a very rare type of dragonfly. They showed me a photo of the species they were looking for. The area was open to the public so I just asked them to give me plenty of room and not to walk close to the bank in my swim, they were happy with that.

They left after a fruitless 5 or 6 hours. I did not have the heart to tell them that there were a couple of the dragonflies in the lily pads in my swim. I did get a couple of photos but not to a very good standard.
 

banksy

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Similarly, I was having a fluff chucking session, sitting on a stool and twitching a nymph (not a euphemism!), and for two hours I had two water voles pottering about unconcernedly about 4 feet away from me.

Then a bush on the bank about 50 yards away seemed to stand up and started moving.
An old chap stood up and removed the camo net under which he'd been sitting, packed up his camera gear and walked along the bank towards me.
He told me he's been there for three hours, hoping to catch a glimpse and take a few photos of the rare water vole, which he'd been told lived on the pond.
I didn't have the heart to tell him.

Voley.jpg
 

banksy

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Fishing a remote stretch of the Pocklington canal, I was treated to a display of drumming by a group of snipe.
The most amazing sound, and hard to believe they were creating that noise with their wings.
 

62tucker

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I got a niger seed feeder. Nowt touched it for months. Then 2 goldfinches. Then 4. Last count there was 16. They on the niger and sunflower hearts now.
 

MarkW

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When I was in hospital nearly three years ago a flock of waxwings turned up to eat the berries on a bush in the garden behind us complete with attendant twitchers, by the time I got back all I saw was a twitcher. Great egrets have been around at least 15 years on the Avon Valley, the day I first saw one they had bittern, herons, cattle egrets, great and little egrets all the same day on the Somerley Estate.
 

rudd

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as a bit of a closet "twitcher" i was pleased and surprised to see that a great white egret has taken up residence on a lake that I pass on the drive to work. I've spotted it from the car most days in the last fortnight - but it has flown away when I've walked along the road to take a photo..
It's the first that I've seen (unlike the little egrets that have become widespread in the last 25 years).

Basically a pure white heron with a yellow tinged bill.

what interesting feathered creatures have you spotted in this country (whilst fishing or not)?

Whilst fishing - barn owl quartering the meadow opposite and a water rail picking it's way over dead winter reeds are my favourites. I've only seen a water rail that one occasion as well!
Amongst the many that appear each year on the Felixstowe peninsula:
I have Seen a Snowy Owl, Great Bustard and an Eagle owl.
Several months back a neighbour of mine had a black Panther / Puma walk passed him and his son down the local lake.
 
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