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Amwell, birding

A very very cold day but the sun was shining and we didn’t venture out until 1pm. Amwell is always a good place in winter to see Smew so we were pretty hopeful about seeing our first one this winter. There was reported to be a Red-crested Pochard around and Jack Snipe.

On the main lake all the usual suspects were there – Grebes, Herons, Canada Geese, a good variety of ducks but no Smew, lots of Snipe around the edge but no Jack snipe, Cetti’s Warbler was heard.

We had a slow walk down to the small lake where the Red-crested Pochard had been reported and had a quick scan with our bins. Nothing. Ian had another scan, using the scope this time and got straight onto it. UK tick for me and a Herts tick for Ian.

We followed the canal towards Ware and had pretty good views of a male Smew flying over, heading back towards the main lake.

After wandering down towards Ware and checking out all the ducks and gulls on the lake we were getting decidedly chilly so headed back to the main lake and had a scan with the telescope. The male Smew was located at the very far side, it was really active and diving close in to the bank. Always such a beautiful bird to see.

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