October 19, 2011:
On this high Pennine wind-swept reservoir a mature bird has been present for several days. It was in full summer plumage and beautifully marked, quite different to the juveniles or moulting birds sometimes seen inland in the autumn. Great Northern Divers nest mainly in Iceland and Greenland and return there in April after wintering much further south, usually well off-shore in the Atlantic.
This bird spent most of the time diving and would often travel a considerable distance under water which made it difficult to relocate on the choppy surface. It occasionally preened and wing-flapped and on more than one occasion sang mournfully, a most eerie sound at this remote location. Unfortunately it was always distant which made photography difficult.