On the lakes I checked up on the COOT family, both parents were feeding the young, of which I could see at least 3 from where I stood, the GREYLAG GEESE pair are still incubating eggs, while eleven CANADA GEESE chased each other around the water noisily. The only other lake dwellers today were 3 male MALLARDS and 4 MOORHEN. A scan around the bankside vegetation was made, but little found, although I did get to hear my first WILLOW WARBLER song this year, one of my favourite songsters :-) I stayed around for 20 mins or so hoping to here a Cuckoo call, but failed to hear one, I wonder if I will this year?
My second patch visit was around 10:00am, when I walked the fields and Paddocks of Migrant Alley, the wind was still strong and gusty, making it hard to hear any overhead calls, but I did hear then see a YELLOWHAMMER go over, and at least 2 MEADOW PIPIT. 4 LINNETS perched up on the fence line, not quite the Wheatear or Whinchat that can appear her though ! I did have some fortune however, whilst walking the Wooded Headland I found my first WHITETHROAT (87,71) of the year, its arrival here is 2 days earlier than the 12 year median arrival date, and the third earliest spring record. Despite much sky watching, no other new migrant species were seen today, the best on offer was a couple of SPARROWHAWKS being harassed by the four SWALLOWS from the College Stables, and 3 HOUSE MARTINS that got blown through the area.
The third visit was induced by the appearance of the sun, once again I set of for a circuit of Migrant Alley, and a bit of a sky watch, but again little was seen, a large raptor flew over very high up, probably a buzzard, but it was just a black smudge in the sky, the strong wind didn't help as I couldn't keep my bins steady! I had seen that the Tree Nursery field was now being ploughed, and took a look to see what was taking advantage of the freshly turned soil, I found 30 ROOKS, 11 JACKDAWS, 4 MAGPIES, 8 STOCK DOVES, and a dozen HERING GULLS with 2 LESSER BLACK BACKED GULLS.
|........and here is a Chaffinch this ones from my garden :-)|
|STARLING on fence post at Migrant Alley|
|This Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly was also seen this afternoon, not easy to get a decent photo with the 500mm lens!|