Inside the goose roost

Loch Leven is currently hosting 13285 Pink-footed Geese. I know this because I was out with Craig and our RSPB colleagues counting them this morning. We all stand at vantage points early in the morning around the loch and count birds leaving the site.

P1100365Geese in a daytime roost

A couple of days ago I set up a trail camera to do two things. One was to see if it is possible to read Cormorant rings while they roost in the daytime, the other was to see what goes on in the goose roost. I often hear geese at night from my Milnathort home. It’s not as simple as flying out in the morning, sleeping all night and heading back out to the fields in the morning.


All looks quite serene….

DCIM100EK113 and peaceful.

              DCIM100EK113Something wakes them up and there is some posturing

DCIM100EK113And for the first time in the night they’re off.

DCIM100EK113They land back on the water and swim cautiously back to the island.

DCIM100EK113They make their way back up.


This picture is interesting. The bird to the left of the middle in the foreground appears to be a marked bird wearing a collar


They are soon off again!



And back up on the island


An altercation takes place probably for space.


And its back to sleep.


Wide awake and alert again!


Another flush leaving a bird behind.


Birds are swimming about offshore looking to head out to feed on the fields


Cormorants are returning to their daytime roost after fishing early morning.

I hope to be putting out the cameras more this winter to see what is happening in the goose roosts. Fingers crossed I can capture more interesting behaviour.

Unfortunately I had no luck this time reading any cormorant rings but there is a bit of an art to setting these cameras


This cormorant pecks at the camera at one point!

The sharp-eyed ones amongst you will have noticed that the date stamp in the corner are incorrect. I’ve changed it so next time you’ll be able to work it out in real-time. I took a total of 226 shots in 36 hours here so there is a lot of trawling through pictures to be done!

About @jeremysquire

Naturalist living in Kinross-shire originally from Gloucestershire. Twitter @Jeremysquire
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