After all that wet and windy weather yesterday, today was much calmer with some long sunny spells. I left for work a little early this morning, as it was light, and was rewarded with 3 new species for Novembers list - A KESTREL hunting over the tree nursery, a GREY WAGTAIL on the manure heap at Migrant Alley, and a skein of 7 GREYLAG GEESE that flew over whilst I admired the wagtail.
This afternoon things turned a bit cloudier, but it was still bright enough to get some photo's at last. I set off on my now usual winter walk, of the small holding, wet woods and Lake/scrub area, only visiting Migrant Alley briefly.
It was good to find 3 male and 2 female BULLFINCH'S in an overgrown area, on the way to the small holding, where another new species for the month, a GREEN WOODPECKER was seen in the Orchard. The wet woods was a bit wetter, after the rain, but not wet enough to find any Teal in there, just a GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, and a few MOORHEN were seen.
It was the turn of the lake to give some excitement to this afternoons walk, the months first GREY HERON was seen, as well as the first CORMORANT fishing there since Apr 14th. The usual MALLARDS and MOORHENS were about, but the most pleasing find was - at last - MANDARIN DUCK (108), 3 in fact, 2 Males and a Female, the year list goes up by one more, and last years record yearly total of 106 species is left well behind!
Whilst at the lake two more new monthly species were found, the MARSH TIT, which was with a flock of LONG TAILED TITS, and another good one for my patch REDPOLL, at least 3 went over calling.
I made my way over to Migrant Alley and had a short Skywatch, and checked the tall hedge, the latter had the first LINNET of the month, and the skywatch produced a COMMON GULL, not often recorded on my patch, so another good one for the November total. Also noted going over was another GREY HERON, 3 BLACK HEADED GULLS, 5 SKYLARKS, and 10 PIED WAGTAILS that came over to the Greenhouse complex to look for a roost site.
So eleven more for November, and some good species amongst them, brings the list to 44. There are a few more species that i should find easy enough, Treecreeper and Yellowhammer, an Owl Species, maybe another gull, but it's gonna be hard to get to that 66 I got last year!
Whilst at my skywatching seat, this Dunnock came and joined me, It looked at me as if to say '' thanks for scaring away the Sprawk, I don't think you looked funny'' ( thanks mate)