This morning started with just a touch of frost, but with no wind and wall to wall sunshine, it felt very springlike. So I was a bit miffed to say the least when it clouded over, and the breeze picked up by the time I had finished work !
I felt sure my first Chiffchaff of the year would have arrived overnight, but it wasn't to be, this afternoon I looked and listened as I walked over to the lakes and around the Scrubby Wood, but it was predictably the same species that were encountered. The TREECREEPER was back singing again, and without yesterdays gale blowing I could hear the GOLDCREST singing as well, a few SISKINS were still about, they had all departed by March 9th last year, I even had one at my garden feeders early this morning. The only frequently seen woodland species that wasn't seen today was the Nuthatch, they are very quiet at the moment.
The lakes were also predictable, the 6 CANADA GEESE, and the pair of COOTS were all that was seen, but this was probably due not only to the gas cannons, but also the gardener of the big house next the the lakes, whizzing around on his lawn mower all afternoon - ah! the sound of spring!
My visit to the Tree Nursery and Pub Field was a little more rewarding, but only a little, the partially muck spread maize stubbles, on the Pub Field, had another increase in Stock Doves, there now being at least 23 with the gathering of ROOKS and JACKDAWS, but there were no Gulls today. A work crew were still in the Tree Nursery, but I had a walk round anyway, all I found were a few female PHEASANTS and the odd WREN,DUNNOCK,ROBIN, and BLACKBIRD.
I decided on a walk over to Migrant Alley, and just as I was leaving the Tree Nursery, a REED BUNTING (58) flew over, a nice species for the March list, and only the second one seen this year, it's loud call as it flew over, was explained when a few seconds later a male SPARROWHAWK flew over, with a PIED WAGTAIL mobbing it!
I walked the boundary hedgerow that divides Migrant Alley and the Greenhouses to get to my seat, and a well earned sit down, on the way the hedge provided me with a few GOLDFINCH, and a Goldcrest, which gave me a photograph. On taking my seat, the wind got up a bit, and it felt chilly again, the only noteworthy flyovers were a KESTREL, another SPARROWHAWK, this time the female, and a pair of CORMORANTS.
Above: the Goldcrest that was in the boundary hedgerow
Below, well its one of them lambs! Tomorrow the College hosts its annual event, the ''lambing weekend'' This really makes me grumpy, as half of Migrant Alley is turned into a bloody car park :-(, i'll have to be out at the crack of dawn to get round the college grounds before it all kicks off!