It remained dry today, that is until I finished work, when it started throwing it down with rain, sleet and snow. They say your bad luck and good luck even themselves out over time - well I'm due some good luck - big time!
Not deterred by the wintry mix of precipitation, I thought i'd just whizz over to the lake area, check it out, and whizz back again, however once I got to the lake the rain petered out, so I hung around for longer. Despite much searching and scanning of the lakes the only thing seen was the COOT, how often can I say that! It seems strange to see a Coot swimming across the water, not a common species here at all. I didn't expect to see much anyway as the tree surgeons were still working in the nearby garden.
After I had convinced myself the was nothing more to be seen on the water, I headed for the Wet Woods and spent the next hour giving the place a thorough searching. I found the MALLARDS on the large pools, at least 6 of them, but it was hard to know how many were there in the dense tangle of fallen trees and branches - lovely habitat! A couple of MOORHEN made there presence known with their loud calls, but it was all quiet really, until I found the feeding flock of LONG TAILED TITS. About 15 flitted all around me, some high up in the canopy, some as low as a foot from the floor, I stood, watched and listened for at least 20 mins, and amongst the flock I located a GOLDCREST, two GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS, 4 SISKINS, and 4 TREECREEPERS, but it was hard to tell how many of the latter, there seemed to be one on every tree trunk I looked at, there could have been as many as eight!
Whist watching the feeding flock I thought I heard a Teal call, I was sure I did, so off I went, and walked round the edge of all the pools which is as large as half a soccer pitch in all, but again after much searching I couldn't locate a Teal, there are just too many good hiding places amongst the branches, I did however see Goldcrest and Treecreepers again, but they were more than likey the same ones seen earlier.
After an hour or so it got too gloomy to see much, and the cold was getting to me, so i squelched off back home along the muddy footpaths, hearing a STOCK DOVE sing on the way, for only the second time this year.
I reached home with still an hour of feeding activity left at the garden feeders, and as I watched all the finch's clamouring for sunflower hearts, a lone male Siskin dropped in, probably the same one as ive been getting all month, the BRAMBLING also dropped in again - very nice, this no doubt is certainly the same bird I keep recording in my garden, lets hope in stays into March, it would be a nice addition to that months list.
Above: The Brambling. I was amazed at how well these pics came out as it was almost dark, and I'd forgotten to turn on the stabilizer on the lens.........