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Wednesday, 6 November 2013

HEMEL MEGA: GREAT WHITE EGRET touring Water End, Great Gaddesden & Piccotts End Pools!


GREAT WHITE EGRET at Water End / Great Gaddesden / Piccotts End Pools.

GREAT WHITE EGRET at Great Gaddesden flood meadows, N of Hemel Garden Centre.
Record shot of GREAT WHITE EGRET at Great Gaddesden flood meadows, N of Hemel Garden Centre
- with LITTLE EGRET & GREY HERON in background, showing the habitat & how I found the bird at this location.














































More images below...


UPDATE (extract from quick email):

Hi all,
sorry for lack of updates, battery went after trying to get news out, typical!

Basically I only went out early in case the Redbournbury GREAT WHITE EGRET had popped over to the ideal, if a bit disturbed, habitat at Piccotts End / Water End / Great Gaddesden with all the Little Egrets - well just as well I did!

First seen whilst I was stood at Water End flood meadows on N side of Nettleden Road walking S to go home! - At 9.06 I saw a huge pale bird flying N from over Heizdin's Wood, Water End with another bird that appeared a similar size & colour at distance, but that one went down towards the Red Lion Pub area of Water End.

As it neared I could see that amazingly it was the GREAT WHITE EGRET!

It drifted over landing 2 mins later at flood meadows near private fishing pool N of wooden foot bridge.

I carefully headed back in that direction but saw it ahead of me take off & head in direction of Great Gaddesden at 9.12 so headed that way.

At 9.23 it was feeding with a LITTLE EGRET on the flood meadows just S of Hemel Garden Centre, Gt. Gaddesden but quickly moved on N over garden centre so I hopped up to the main road (L.Buzzard Rd.) so I could view the flood meadows N of the garden centre without disturbing it.

Seemed unsettled & other birds unsure of it.

At 9.30 I saw the bird feeding in said flood meadow with another LITTLE EGRET, where the JACK SNIPE was earlier. A man was walking across meadow but it didn't seem bothered by him.

At 9.32 it headed off strongly N. After seeing similar looking bird with it initially I decided to head back quickly to S Water End to check out the river that runs parallell to the road near the Red Lion.

No luck, now was getting late for work so decided to ride fast back to work.

At 9.45 a GWE (2nd bird?) flew low W across L.Buzzard Road at Piccotts End, N of village, going down at Piccotts End Pools! I went to the pools!

At 9.52 the / a GWE was at the stream at the back of the pools upsetting the gulls a bit, it moved to the stream just S of the pools with 2 LITTLE EGRETS.

At 9.55 it headed off W over brow of hill out of sight.


There were 2.5 miles between where I saw the bird leaving & going out of sight N over Dagnall Road N of Gt. Gaddesden, & where I saw the GWE over L.Buzzard Road at Piccotts End to the S, & the time between sightings was about 12 mins. I didn't see an egret flying nearby the whole time, & as you can imagine I was being extra observant! Once I left Gt.Gaddesden (once camera packed away & checking the GWE was out of sight N) I was at Piccotts End in just over 5 mins at about 10mph. Now I know a GWE could easily do that distance in that time but it was flying completely the wrong way out of sight N when I left & the bird at P.End was coming in leisurely from the E 2.5 miles S of the last sighting. I'm not sure without flying very directly it would have made it, especially without me seeing it, riding the direct route S following the river linking both areas. This made me consider that there could have been 2 birds, especially as there was a bird with it that appeared the same as it seen at distance when I first saw it flying in to Water End.

GREAT WHITE EGRET flying N & down to Water End flood meadows,
from over Heizdin's Wood, across Nettleden Road & down to area near
private fishing pool & wooden foot bridge.
GREAT WHITE EGRET flying N & down to Water End flood meadows,
from over Heizdin's Wood, across Nettleden Road & down to area near
private fishing pool & wooden foot bridge.
GREAT WHITE EGRET at Great Gaddesden flood meadows, N of Hemel Garden Centre.
GREAT WHITE EGRET at Great Gaddesden flood meadows,
N of Hemel Garden Centre - with GREY HERON in background.
GREAT WHITE EGRET at Great Gaddesden flood meadows, N of Hemel Garden Centre
- with LITTLE EGRET & GREY HERON in background.
GREAT WHITE EGRET leaving Great Gaddesden N flood meadows & heading N.
GREAT WHITE EGRET leaving Great Gaddesden N flood meadows & heading N.
Record shot of GREAT WHITE EGRET at Piccotts End Pools - showing habitat of stream just to S of pools.
Record shot of GREAT WHITE EGRET at Piccotts End Pools.
Record shot of GREAT WHITE EGRET at Piccotts End Pools.
Record shot of GREAT WHITE EGRET at Piccotts End Pools.
GREAT WHITE EGRET leaving Piccotts End Pools & going W out of sight over brow of hill.






4 comments:

  1. Great set of shots, Dan. They provide a really good account of the sighting and the bird's movements. Time put in, rewarded! Well done, Lucy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Lucy, really appreciate your kind feedback. Lets hope it sticks around the area for others to see.
      Good luck if you visit those areas soon, Dan.

      Delete
  2. Replies
    1. Thank you, kind of you to say, though a bit fuzzy & grainy due to distance & low light, but extremely happy to get any photos of this great bird, & local to me, & at one point, so close to town.

      Delete

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