The second visit of the year commenced at 08.00, I left a little later this morning so as to give the birds a chance to get out and about! I first paid a visit to the lake area, which still had a thin covering of ice over it, so it was devoid of ducks. The bankside vegetation had 4 BULLFINCH in it, and further in the woody area a COAL TIT was in song - signs of spring ? The wet woods held a new species for the year, when 2 TEAL (47) were heard, also heard here, was a MARSH TIT, and a little further on I came across a party of 5 GOLDCREST, but there wasn't a Firecrest amongst them - pity! I also met my friend David, who had come up to get a few birds for his year list, as we headed over to the farmland part of the walk ,I recorded the years first FIELDFARE (48).the first bird david wanted to see was was the BARN OWL, it sat in the shack and allowed us good views of it, whilst we watched, 2 LESSER REDPOLL (49) alighted in the hedgerow in front of us, a good one for my year list, this species has been missed in previous years. At Migrant alley it all seemed quiet at first, but it wasn't long before a stream of BLACK HEADED GULLS came into the sheep pasture, followed by Small groups of LAPWING, which built up into a flock of 180 birds, quite a spectacle as they all flew up into the sunshine. One COMMON GULL (50) flew over, as did a few HERRING GULL, and a solitary SKYLARK (51) . After walking round the college grounds, and picking up REDWING and the other common thrushes, we headed back out to Migrant Alley to scan the Lapwing flock in the hope of picking up a Golden Plover amongst them, but we failed, However, after seeing all the birds in the fields go up in panic, we scanned the sky for a raptor, which was found in the form of the local PEREGRINE (52), it perched up on the Tower at hadlow , before flying off SW. My friend got a couple of nice birds for his year list, and saw the MARSH TIT at my garden feeeders, and I added 6 birds to my year list, so a good day overall.
My mate David lent me a 500mm lens, so I tried it out on some garden birds,