While conducting a tour of Maple Lodge Nature Reserve I stopped off at Lynsters Hide that overlooks Lynsters Gravel Pit and began viewing the waterfowl present on the lake. It was here that I observed a Tufted Duck with a saddle ring on its upper bill. The ring was blue in colour and appeared to have a black inscription on it. After a brisk walk home to collect my spotting scope I eventually manged to decipher the inscription and take a couple of photo's through the scope. The inscription read A 94 or g4.
I have discovered that a ringing programme of this type was conducted in France and have contacted the ringer to identify this bird.
Another odd looking Tufted Duck was observed showing an extensive white base to the bill. I know from experience that female Tufted Duck's can indeed have a whitish base to their bills but this was so much more obvious than usual. It's head was also more angular and after consulting my bird guide I have concluded that this was a Hybrid Scaup/Tufted Duck.
Other species of interest observed while at Maple Lodge Nature Reserve as follow;
Red Kite (4), Fieldfare (c100 moving north), Kingfisher, Grey Wagtail (immature at sluice).