A 'squealing pig' in the reed-bed at Branton East Pond could only mean one thing- a Water Rail-but could we see it as well as hear it? Waiting and watching patiently and silently, we were rewarded after a few minutes with a brief 'couple of seconds' worth as it tiptoed past a little open channel in the reeds. Oh well, better than nothing!
However, the best was yet to
come. As we headed up the east side of the pond, the Water Rail decided
to fly along past us to the next reedy edge, giving us a rare view
of the now silent bird in flight-with bill angled down towards the water
and legs trailing behind- something we've never seen before.
We enjoyed the rest of our visit, with plenty of activity on the water
from the usual suspects, and even more activity in the Alder Trees from
Lesser Redpolls, Siskins, Goldfinches and Goldcrests, where the seed
cones were clearly proving irresistible. But the 'flying pig' was the