All was very still and quiet as I walked through the Small Holding and Wet Woods to get to the lakes, 3 different GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS were heard to drum, and numerous GREAT TITS called, a few MAGPIES cackled but otherwise everything was very sleepy.
At the lakes it was very much as you were, the pair of COOTS were seen, along with 2 pairs of MALLARD, 1 pair of MOORHENS and 4 pairs of CANADA GEESE. The surrounding Scrubby Woods was a bit more livelier, with a pair of NUTHATCH seen, one giving that clear sweet sounding pew-pew-pew spring call, in a nearby tree a pair of LONG TAILED TITS collected nesting material, and somewhere deeper in the woods a TREECREPER called, then, the moment came that I have been anticipating for days now, the first spring CHIFFCHAFF (72,59) was heard, not singing unfortunately, but giving its soft hu-eet call......now spring really is here :-) The Chiffchaffs arrival is 3 days earlier than the mean arrival date for the past 10 years, and the fourth earliest so far, this years arrival being a day later than last years. Another confirmation that spring has arrived in force was the first sighting of the Comma butterfly, looking at my butterfly stat sheet that I started last spring, shows that this years sighting is 11 days earlier than last year :-)
|First Comma of the year! I must remember to change the lens for Butterfly photographs, its not easy with a 500mm lens with a minimum close focus of 2 meters!|
The comma was the only photo I took this afternoon, so here are a couple of weekend garden bird shots :-)