This morning as I walked into work I heard the song of a CHIFFCHAFF, it was singing from the wooded headland at the north end of Migrant Alley, nice start to the day :-)
However, it was another frustrating patch visit this afternoon, low cloud hung in the sky, and a mist lingered in the air, making for very poor visibility, it was useless for trying to spot small flyover birds, and a cold NE wind made it uncomfortable to attempt to do so! Back in February I thought i'd be watching my first Butterflies by now, but spring seems to have stalled somewhat :-(
There were still some winter species around my patch today, I counted 45 REDWING in the trees around the Small Holding, whilst in the nearby Alpaca enclosure a good flock of Finch's were seen mostly CHAFFINCH, but also a few GREENFINCH. In the Wet Woods a single pair of MALLARD were on the flooded pits, a GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER called, and GREAT and BLUE TITS did likewise, a TREECREEPER was heard to sing, but that was about it.
Walking the footpath to the lakes, the large wooded garden to the left had a few birds in, notably 6 SISKIN, but more menacingly was the gardener/handyman wandering around with and airgun, I hope he's not just shooting at anything that moves, makes me wince to think of a shot coming from the garden hitting anyone on the footpath, me in particular!
Over on the lakes the pair of COOTS have added a bit more to the nest site, fingers crossed for them :-) Only the usual species were keeping them company, 4 CANADA GEESE 4 MALLARD and 2 MOORHEN.
just a brief stroll into the Scrubby woods was had again, where NUTHATCH were seen, as well as three different pairs of LONG TAILED TIT, a COAL TIT sang, and more song from the likes of BLACKBIRD, ROBIN, WREN, DUNNOCK and MISTLE THRUSH cheered the gloomy afternoon a little.
The Tree Nursery was re-visited by the digger as well as me today, it was having another hack at the drainage ditch, it's now lost all the nesting cover, as well as the grasses and vegetation that held all those Butterflies I was photographing last year. The Pub Field has a new pile of Manure on it, ready for spreading, surely it will bring in the first migrant Wheatear of the spring ? It wasn't there today though, although a big Corvid flock of over 100 birds were! They were mostly JACKDAWS and CARRION CROWS with a few ROOKS.
I paid a visit to Migrant Alley, but stayed only long enough to scan all the fence posts and fence lines in the hope of finding a Wheatear, but it wasn't to be today, eventually I got fed up with the constant nagging cold wind, and made my way home, seeing the KESTREL up hunting by the Greenhouse complex on the way.
No chance of any photo's today, far too gloomy, maybe tomorrow :-)