It remained dull and cloudy today, right up until around 15:30, when the sun finally decided to shine. My afternoon walk was a bit of a failure! My idea was to go over to the lake area and try to photograph the Blackcap, but as soon as i got into the small holding I could hear a low rumbling, like far off thunder, strange, I thought. I got into the wet woods, and the rumbling was accompanied by engine sounds, loud enough to drown out any song in the woods, if there had been any songsters. The source of this disturbance became apparent as I walked the footpath to the lake, the groundsman of the huge house (yes, the slash and burn man!) was riding on one of those big roller machines, the ones used for flattening tarmac! he was rolling the large lawn area, big flashing orange light an all! I just turned round and didn't waste my time around the lake area.
Crossing the empty part of the tree nursery, on my way for an extended sit at migrant alley, I could at least hear a NUTHATCH calling, and there was a bird in the expanse of broken stems and dried mud, a PHEASANT! Well done to it, for brightening the ''war zone''. The part of the tree nursery that had saplings and shrubs in, produced a GREEN WOODPECKER and a KESTREL sitting near - ish to the Barn Owl nest box, I wonder if it will be tempted by it?
Over at Migrant Alley, the work putting up the wooden fence was just finishing, I was mistaken by thinking it was part the gas pipe line work. It was in fact put up by the Equine center (part of hadlow college) to fence of a horse course. I took my usual seat and scanned the plough, which was being ploughed up along the the line of the proposed gas pipe, it had been left until now. There were a dozen PIED WAGTAILS and 60 ROOKS all feeding on the exposed grubs, but no Wheatears today! A large female SPARROWHAWK went over , sending everything up, and a couple of the rooks saw it off. A surprise bird in the form of a LAPWING went over, always a good bird to get here in April. The only other flyover was from a pair of CANADA GEESE. So not a very productive 2 hour vigil! Oh well, an early start tomorrow should take the months list into the 50's, and maybe another migrant could turn up.
Below: One of the pair of Canada Geese to fly over.