An hours walk round Migrant Alley had me jumping up and down half way round, as a migrant WHIMBREL (91, 63) flew slow and low over, but i'd left the camera indoors, not thinking i'd get any photo opportunities, how wrong was I!
Whimbrel is a very exciting bird to see here, they have only occurred in 3 out of the 9 springs of recording on my patch. Its a species that's most welcome if i'm to reach 100 this year. Just 9 more needed now, but i'm well behind last year, when I had recorded my 100 species by 17 may, this despite seeing two species this year not recorded last ; the Tufted Duck and Nightingale. There again, last year was an exceptional one :-)
Back to today, and, well, it was a poor, poor afternoon. I visited the lakes side scrub, but turned around straight away as the Hadlow College were training Tree Butchers (er sorry Surgeons ) in the large Garden adjacent the lake, there were ropes hanging out of every oak, with noisey chainsaws cutting buck the best bits of the trees - there wont be much left of my patch at this rate :-(
My mood was dampened even more, when a big black bank of cloud rolled in and the cold wind and already struggling temperatures were joined by the rain, who would be a fledgling out in that! Talking of fledglings, as I left the Wet Woods to go over to Migrant Alley I found the first well grown MISTLE THRUSH Juv. of the year, another species joins the patch breeding list this year.
At Migrant Alley it was all those adjectives I keep using this year about the weather - horrendous, Dire, Miserable, etc etc, the cold wind blowing across the fields lashed the rain into my face, and took my breath away at times. Needless to say, I didn't record much, but..... as I was hiding in cover, in the north end scrub, I heard a noise behind me......
It was this little chap, why is he dryer than me ?
It was nearly dark under the tree cover, so the photo's are not very good, a shame, as I would like to have a decent set of Fox cub pics.
Cute or What! Now how could anyone hunt this down, to the point of exhaustion with a pack of dogs, then let them rip it apart? Did you vote for the Conservatives last week - shame on you.