Another couple of inches of snow fell overnight, but as I left for work it felt pleasantly mild, as there was no frost this morning, the first frost free morning for some time.
I again had the great fortune of finding the JACK SNIPE in the College Grounds on the way into work, but not much else was noted.
This afternoon after work, I walked over to the Sheep pasture and paddocks at Migrant Alley, via the Tree Nursery and Pub Field. Not a great deal was seen, the party of a dozen or so PHEASANTS were still finding enough to live on in the Tree Nursery, and several DUNNOCKS called from cover. On the Pub Field the only birds present were two BLACK HEADED GULLS, with a few BLUE TITS and ROBINS in the Hedgerow that runs the length of the field.
The sheep pasture and paddocks at Migrant Alley were still carpeted with snow, which is only slowly thawing, and looking around, all seemed very bleak and quiet, made worse by the now thickening fog rolling in. I made my way up to the large manure heap, as it is warm enough to melt the snow cover and make easier pickings for the birds, on my arrival I found two WRENS, a Dunnock, a Robin and two MEADOW PIPITS, strangely no Pied Wagtails though. The Wren and Meadow Pipit gave me a few Photo opportunities, but this was cut short by an ignorant dog walker (yes another one!) he had 3 huge dogs, all off the lead running around while he yakked on the mobile phone, one dog insisted on jumping up me, and with two grands worth of optical gear round my neck I was having none of that, and the dog was soon dispatched with a well aimed hefty boot to the lower jaw, the next few minutes were spent in a face off with the dog owner, who very nearly got the same treatment as his mut! Anyway I digress....
By now the fog was rolling in, limiting visibility to 50 yards, and having lost a bit of my focus after the dog debacle, I headed off home round the field edge. A LAPWING flew over, giving me a quick snap of it, and again, the two COMMON SNIPE were at their favoured place, as they have been for weeks now, apart from that it was a non eventful walk back home.
Below are a few shots I grabbed today, but the light was very poor, something which now we have reached the winter solstice will be getting better with every passing day :-)
Above and below is one of the Wrens seen on the manure pile