It was however a bit of a productive 2 hour visit, firstly, over on the sheep pasture at Migrant Alley, two GREAT BLACK BACKED GULLS (54) flew low over as I was checking through the BLACK HEADED and HERRING GULLS feeding there. Secondly, over at the lakes, I added GREY HERON (55) to the months list, one was sitting atop a bankside tree, plus a pair of MANDARIN DUCKS flew over calling as they went, but better still, there was a pair of TUFTED DUCKS (56) on the ornamental lake, a very scarce bird to find on my patch. The Great Black Backed Gull and Tufted Duck are new for the 14 year combined April list, taking it to 110 species, that's amazing really, as its three quarters of the 14 year patch total of 140 species, maybe I should only go birding in April!! :-)
I made another patch visit just after midday, as the drizzle had stopped - mostly, I had a circuit of Migrant Alley, hoping to find a Wheatear, but none were seen, maybe i'll not see one this spring? I had an hours sky watch, but the awaited Swallows didn't turn up either, todays date is the 14 year median average arrival date for this species, but the earliest first date here is the 23 March, so I consider them late! A few BUZZARDS were seen and the KESTREL pair put in their daily appearance, the Little Owl was heard to call from the Greenhouse Copse plus the MEADOW PIPIT passage continues, with mostly ones and two's going over, but a party of 5 were also seen, headed NW.
Not a day for the camera, the only images I have left are from my garden, taken earlier in the week.