Local birder DAN FORDER could hardly believe his eyes when he discovered this juvenile OSPREY at Piccotts End Fish Farm on Sunday 21 September 2008. During the course of the following week, he was able to obtain these terrific images of the bird, both in flight and perched on its favourite fir tree. Two images also show the landscape.
It also favours a tall Leylandii Conifer in the large garden of Gaddesden Hall in which to roost, where it affords some outstanding views from the footpath adjacent. Unfortunately, the owners of the fish farm (L. Cura & Sons) are far from impressed with their new resident and are making their best efforts to scare the bird away from their expensive Carp.
Park carefully in Piccotts End village (just north of Hemel Hempstead on the A4146) and walk along Leighton Buzzard road past the Garden Centre to Noakes Mill Lane. Follow the lane for 400 yards to Gaddesden Hall and then follow the public footpath SE for 200 yards to view the private fish ponds from the gap in the hedgerow and fence.
Two LITTLE EGRETS are also present, along with a GREEN SANDPIPER, 2 COMMON KINGFISHERS and a WHINCHAT. I also saw a late HOBBY here on 28th.