I have been working on the sluices at Strumpshaw for the past 2 days, which has the added bonus of being by the river all day. On Weds I managed to see 14 Goosander fly up river in 3 small flocks, at least 25 Whooper Swans flew South. Most interestingly/annoyingly, while quading along the river bank transporting materials I noticed a what looked like a male tufted duck on the river, on closer inspection it had a nice grey back, certainly not black, I lifted my bins once I'd stopped and it was gone. So a brief unbinoculared view, but it was close enough to be sure it was a male Scaup- new Mid-Yare bird for me.
Thursday again was spent sorting the sluice out, the number of wildfowl using the river was far fewer than on weds, maybe I was working harder! But we did manage to see a redhead Smew fly up river, another new one for the reserve for me, there were also a few Goosander flying down river (4) and a single bird was settled on the river feeding on the way back to the office.
So despite the fact that the reserve has very little/no water on it the river seems to be the place to search out the moving birds, I suspect they are all heading up to Whitlingham, their certainly heading that way. When I think of cold weather movement it usually means Smew, Scaup, Goosander and wild swans so I'm quite happy to have had all these while working, although obviously I'd be happy to get some of the rarer wanders too, this weekend....maybe?