A day of sunny intervals today, but quite a breeze, which got stronger as the day went on. My routine trip to find a newly arrived migrant over at the lake area, was not successful in that area, but before I got there I was chuffed to bits to hear a WILLOW WARBLER (84) singing from a small scrubby area at the small holding, a nice birthday treat for me! This bird is 4 days earlier than the mean arrival date. The earliest Willow warbler was heard on Apr 1st, that was in 2006, the latest arrival date was may 1st, in 2004. Such a wide arrival date is down to the fact that this species doesn't breed on my patch, it just passes through, although last year I did have two long staying territorial birds singing for the first time, but couldn't prove breeding.
The scrub at the lake area sounded very springlike, BLACKCAP and CHIFFCHAFF were singing loudly, as well as all the local resident birds, WREN, ROBIN, DUNNOCK, BLACKBIRD, SONGTHRUSH and MISTLE THRUSH. With all that singing, and the GREAT, BLUE and COAL TITS calling, it was hard to drag myself away, believing that any second that Nightingale might sing!
Crossing the tree nursery, a GREEN WOODPECKER flew up in front of me, and both NUTHATCH and TREECREEPER were heard from the wet woods behind me, I sat on a stile, for a minutes rest, and glanced skywards at a bird that was soaring, it was the PEREGRINE again, which was joined, as yesterday, by it's partner. I watched for some time as the chased, and jousted in the sky.
An hour scanning fields, paddocks, and sky at migrant alley, produced very little today, just a SKYLARK, 2 LINNETS, 4 GOLDFINCH, a MEADOW PIPIT and the usual ROOKS and JACKDAWS. There was however a Buzzard up high to the west of my patch.
No butterfies today, the only ones recorded were being blown along on the wind! But below are a couple of shots of the Willow Warbler. Below them is an effort at the Peregrines but they were just to high up.