I was out early this morning before work, in anticipation of finding some birds at Migrant Alley again, but it was back to the quiet mode, all I saw of note were 5 LESSER BLACK BACKED GULLS on the horse paddocks.
This afternoon it remained in quiet mode, I again walked through the Small Holding, Wet woods and lake area, hoping to here a Chiffchaff, but none came forth, it was as it has been recently, singing TREECREEPER, GOLDCREST and COAL TIT. On the lakes the 6 CANADA GEESE remained, with 8 MALLARD and 4 MOORHEN, but the Coot had hidden up again or moved on.
I decided to head for Migrant Alley, and passing through the Wet Woods again, I found a flock of 23 CHAFFINCH feeding on the floor, a good look through them didn't produce any Brambling or Hawfinch though. I came out of the woods and crossed Marchants field, where a flock of around 40 FIELDFARE and 8 REDWING were feeding - quite a decent amount of these birds for this late.
Once at Migrant Alley I walked a circuit of the fields, but found nothing of note except another flock of mixed Fieldfare and Redwing, about 30 birds in all. The next hour was spent sitting on my horse jump seat and skywatching, which gave me nothing but HERRING and BLACK HEADED GULLS, and the resident KESTREL hunting around the Greenhouse Complex. I was thinking about moving on, when from the tall hedge behind me, I heard the call of..................a CHIFFCHAFF (73,66) . Well Migrant Alley has turned up its first migrant of the year, a big welcome back to the little warblers!
Below are some photo's of the first Chiffchaff of the year, not a very exciting bird to look at, but it means it's the start of spring migration on my patch.