|The sun going down over the Wet Woods - just as the sky starts to clear, typical!!|
It was a real struggle to find anything of interest in the 3 hour visit, the 41 species found were all the regular resident species, but at least now some of them have started to sing! The most audible were the MISTLE THRUSHES, 5 of which sang from various parts of my patch, ROBINS seem to be singing from every piece of cover available, they obviously had a good breeding season this year. DUNNOCKS are becoming more visible now, chasing around in three's and fours, wing flicking all the while, with one or two giving their pleasant song, GOLDCREST, SONGTHRUSH, WREN, CHAFFINCH, and even a WOODPIGEON all sang, making for a sneak preview of the dawn chorus that will be in fulll swing in a few weeks time :-)
The only reminder that the spring proper, is still a few weeks away yet, was the sighting of a group of three SISKINS in the College Grounds, no other winter species were found, I don't think I've gone out on a Boxing Day patch visit and never found a Fieldfare or Redwing!
Flyover species were few, and for the most part the uniform grey sky remained empty, but for singles of YELLOWHAMMER, PIED WAGTAIL, STOCK DOVE, and two small groups of HERRING GULLS. The only other Gull species seen today were the BLACK HEADED GULLS, 72 were on the sheep pasture and paddocks of Migrant Alley, Raptor species were represented by the KESTREL hunting over the Greenhouse Grounds, and a BUZZARD that flew from the Greenhouse Copse, calling as it did so.
A pleasant enough visit, but with nothing added to the month or year list it lacked a bit of excitement :-) December looks like it could well have the lowest monthly species total of the year, it still being 4 species behind the 65 species seen in February and July, these two months having the honour of the lowest monthly totals thus far, but things can change!