|08:00hrs - and still no sunrise|
I arrived at the lakes just as the sun broke over the horizon, I was hoping to find something new for the year on the water, or just something new for the December list - a Greylag Goose would do, but only MALLARDS and MOORHEN were found :-( I hung around for half an hour, but nothing dropped in, so in the meantime I noted what was heard and seen around the lake edges and adjacent Scrubby Woods. The likes of BULLFINCH, GOLDCREST, COAL TIT, SISKIN, LESSER REDPOLL, and GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER all turned out, as did a PHEASANT, the first one recorded since December 16th, all these serenaded by a MISTLETHRUSH, which belted out its springtime song.
The 20 min walk over to the College Grounds, Via the Tree Nursery, Pub Field and Migrant Alley, was just what was needed after being cooped up indoors all yesterday afternoon and evening, the sun felt warm, and there was little wind, a much nicer day than some endured early last Summer! The birds were few, as has been the norm recently, but it was great to see all the FIELDFARE on the sheep pasture at Migrant Alley again, along with STARLINGS, plus today there were a few REDWING with them. The KESTREL pair remained on their territory around the Greenhouse Grounds/Tree Nursery, surely they will remain to breed again this year ?
Most of the of the more notable species seen involved flyovers, these included, SPARROWHAWK, HERRING GULL, BLACK HEADED GULL, LESSER BLACK BACKED GULL, CORMORANT, MEADOW PIPIT, STOCK DOVE ( just the second record this month) and best of all a flock of 55 LAPWING :-)
42 species were recorded today, which is only slightly less than average for a December patch visit, but i'd like to add a couple more species to the months list in the final week. As Mentioned I still haven't seen a Greylag Goose, and the likes of Peregrine, Teal, Snipe, Mandarin Duck, Brambling, Mute Swan, or Coot may well turn up, plus there is always that feral Barnacle Goose! :-) All a bit of incentive to keep up the visits :-)
The only other photo I took today was of this GREENFINCH in my garden, a species getting getting scarcer here now.