The wind had shifted round to the south west this afternoon, but although it wasn't quite as cold as yesterday, it was blowing even stronger! I contemplated staying in and watching the garden as I ate lunch, and the sighting of both SISKIN and BRAMBLING at the feeders should have persuaded me, but no, I had to up the stakes, and go out on my patch - it was a possible Swallow or other exciting spring migrant versus the definite Brambling and Siskin, the former won out.
I took the choice and lost! All I could hear in the wet woods was the roar of the wind in the tree tops, and the only thing of note was the MALLARD with her ducklings, there were only 5 out of 17, had the rest all been predated ? I like to think this was another brood, I'll try and keep an eye out for the first one. The lake didn't help me out at all, just the CANADA GEESE, MOORHEN and 2 more Mallard were there. I still had Migrant alley to look over, but shortly after getting there, a heavy shower rolled in, and ended the afternoons excursion. All I saw was a singing SKYLARK and 150 sheep and lambs being driven to new pasture by the shepherds two sheep dogs, you now you've had a bad day when counting sheep was a highlight!!
I just got in as the rain stopped, and the sun came out (typical!) I made a cup of tea, and sat by the bedroom window to watch the garden for an hour or so. It wasn't long before the Siskin came in, a pair fed on the Sunflower hearts, along with the GREEN, GOLD, and CHAFFINCH'S. Then a Lovely bright male BRAMBLING came in, and fed on the floor, on the spilt hearts with the Chaffinch's, a cracking bird. I got a few pics, but the sun was in my face, and I was shooting through the rain spangled window, so they are rubbish photo's. A little later a female Brambling came in and fed at the tube feeder, Ive never seen one on them before. Other birds of note to use the garden - NUTHATCH, COAL TIT, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, and a couple of WOOD PIGEONS, they are only ocasional visitors to my garden.
The weather still looks rubbish for the next few days, and few, if any spring migrants will be arriving on my patch this weekend, I'll still be out looking though!
Above; One of the Mallard ducklings in the wet woods