Typically, after a dull and cold weekend, Monday dawned bright and crisp with a slight frost, the rest of the day was wall to wall sunshine, with just a hint of that cool wind.
This afternoon, after work, I had limited time to get out, but the 90 minutes I did spend on patch was rather exciting for me. I took my usual route through the Small holding and Wet woods, noting down the parties of CHAFFINCH in both these habitats, there has been an influx of them over the past few days, The Wet woods was very quiet otherwise. On approaching the lakes, I could here the CANADA GEESE making there usual racket, but when I arrived to scan the main lake, I found with them a pair of GREYLAG GEESE, but the star attraction for me today, was the duck that swam with them - a cracking male POCHARD (74, 56), Yes!! A bit of reward for all my efforts put in watching these patches of water :-) This is only the 4th year that Pochard has been on the year list, but those are the consecutive years from 2008, being seen in just a single month each of those years.
The lone COOT had also stayed around, as had the pair on the ornamental lake, but just 1 pair of MALLARD were seen and a single MOORHEN, however this represents a very busy time for these waters!
Pleased with my new year tick, I had a quick scan of the scrubby woods, turning up NUTHATCH, TREECREEPER, SISKIN and a lone FIELDFARE, which was a bit of a surprise. Both SPARROWHAWK and KESTREL were hunting over the area, but for such a nice day, there were few birds about.
A short visit, but a most enjoyable one :-)
Here's the Pochard, not terribly good photo's, they certainly don't do him justice, but he was a long way out on the water, and I didn't want to flush him :-)