A beautiful spring day today, well at least it was whilst I was at work, once I got home the wind had got up and cloud rolled in, just my luck!
It was however a big improvement on last weeks weather, and it was very pleasant to be out. I did my usual walk over to the lake Area, via the small holding and Wet
woods, but it wasn't as lively as I thought it would be. A SPARROWHAWK was over the wet woods as I approached them, but once inside only a few MALLARD and MOORHEN were seen on the pools of water, and a small flock of half a dozen CHAFFINCH fed amongst the leaf litter. Walking the footpath from the woods to the lake, I found one of the MARSH TITS that I didn't find on yesterdays visit, if they are going to breed elswhere they will be leaving my patch very shortly.
On the main lake today I saw just 4 Mallard, and on the Ornimental lake there was the COOT, the small top lake was devoid of any waterfowl. As I walked back, I scanned the main lake one more time, and found.........another Coot! Just to make sure there was two, I looked across the ornimental lake to check on the other one, and it was there! Two Coots, thats an all time peak record count for my patch!
I felt quite pleased with that find, and walked back along the footpath to the wet woods and off to Migrant Alley for some skywatching, finding on the way, my first butterfly of the year, a worn looking RED ADMIRAL, just out of hibernation I should think.
I reached migrant Alley, and took my seat, something I will be doing more of as the spring moves on and the lake becomes less likely to produce anything new. I didn't find any migrant Wheatear though, or flyover migrant Sandmartins, but i'll try again tomorrow. I did see three GULL species though, BLACK HEADED, COMMON and LESSER BLACK BACKED, and the KESTREL around the Greenhouse Complex. Just a dozen or so FIELDFARE and REWDING were out on the paddocks, with 3 MISTLE THRUSH.
As for the Chiffchaffs, well they havn't arrived on my patch yet, but one was reported to me, singing at the nearby Poult Wood golf course, will they arrive tomorrow, the mean arrival date over the last 8 years ?
Above: is a WREN that was in my garden. Below is my Red Admiral, the first butterfly of the year.