I used the decent weather to carry out a 5 hour full patch walk, in which I recorded a good tally of 47 species. The early sunshine made for a much more pleasant visit and as I left home there were plenty of birds active, with COLLARED DOVE, CHAFFINCH, GREENFINCH, GOLDFINCH, DUNNOCK, CARRION CROW, JACKDAW, BLUE TIT, BLACKBIRD, ROBIN, HOUSE SPARROW, MAGPIE, STARLING and WOODPIGEON all being seen or heard in the 200m walk along Ashes Lane.
Crossing the Ashes Lane Field there were a pair of SKYLARKS singing above the unimproved grassland there, as there was last spring, not a place for them to breed though, as the management here is not wildlife friendly, also there was a dozen FIELDFARE and a pair of MISTLEHRUSH on the sheep pasture part of the fields, plus I saw a pair of BUZZARDS fly from a lone Oak, then into the Wet Woods, where I found my first of 6 GOLDCREST for the day.
On the lakes today it was all change from yesterday, with 12 CANADA GEESE visiting, plus a trio of GOOSANDER, one being a superb male. I got some very distant shots of them and cropped them down for the blog :-)
The adjacent Scrubby Woods was given a good searching through, where I found more Goldcrest, a singing COAL TIT, 4 BULLFINCH, a calling NUTHATCH, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS drumming and GREEN WOODPECKERS ''yaffling'' , but Treecreeper, Long Tailed Tit and Jay all went unseen, as they did all morning in fact.
The arable and bean fields off High House Lane had more Fieldfare on them, around 100 birds in all, with just a few REDWING scattered among them. Lone YELLOWHAMMER, MEADOW PIPIT and PIED WAGTAIL flew over as I made my way to the Greenhouse Copse, where the expected LITTLE OWL sat waiting, I thought about getting a few shots of it using my new camera, but I couldn't get a clear view of it, so left it in peace :-)
The Greenhouse Grounds was home, as usual to the KESTREL pair, but I also found the first SONGTHRUSHES of the morning, as well as a PHEASANT.
Migrant Alley was brimming with BLACK HEADED GULLS, there were at least 200 on the paddocks and sheep pasture, a long scan through them could only produce two COMMON GULL with them though. As I was scanning through them I heard a TAWNY OWL call, it sounded like it came from the Wet Woods some 300 meters away, such was the stillness of the air this morning :-)
A bit of a skywatch was had, but I only added HERRING GULL and CORMORANT to the list, two of which went over together, plus this STOCK DOVE that I snapped as it whizzed past. I took a few more images this morning, experimenting with the 7D MKii, i'll post them up tomorrow.
Stock Dove / Feral Pigeon ?