In the hope of the wind dying back and the possibility of fitful sunshine, I headed for Tring Reservoirs. On my arrival it was still dull and as I walked from the Weir along the path between Startops and Marsworth reservoirs, the wind was very obvious, and I had come layered up but without a coat – bad mistake!
At first there seemed little activity beyond numerous Coots and Mallard, but then I spotted the distinctive flight of wagtails as they looped out from the bank and back again, and then foraging in the grass. I did spot a couple of Grebe that were showing signs of interest in each other, but continuing observation did not suggest they might start their dance ritual. I also spotted some swans that became restless and would take off, and move just a few yards before landing again, leaving one of their number behind in the corner between the reservoirs and the canal on the Marsworth side. He became very aggressive towards a single Greylag Goose, but the behaviour was very odd; his head was lowered as he fast-pedalled towards the goose, but it certainly put the wind up his opponent who amidst a flurry of wings took off and landed a few lengths away, but the swan employed the same behaviour a few more times; I could not work out quite why the Goos was so intimidated.
The Canada Geese like the Swans seemed to spend time flying from one spot to another, but their numbers were far smaller than those I had seen at Wilstone a fortnight or so back. On Startops End a lone Grebe seemed happy on its own and was successful on one dive I was able to capture. It seemed a small prize for a bird of its size, since I had once witnessed a Grebe swallowing two freshwater crawfish within a five minute spell.
I twice closed up the tripod to head home, and each time I spotted something else, such as Swans in flight, that caught my eye, so hastily used the tripod as a monopod to grab the shots! The reason for leaving early was to be ready for the off later to see my daughter Lizzy’s 20th Anniversary of Playing with Bedfordshire Music at a church in Bedford.