A slight frost, with clear blue skies greeted me this morning, making it feel very spring-like, what a relief from the rain! The blossom is already starting to appear, spring wont be long now!
An enjoyable, although still muddy, 4 hour patch visit was had this morning, but just because the weather has improved doesn't mean the birding has! I didn't find any new species for the year/month list, they will become hard to find now, but I would hope a few of the winter species, like Brambling, Woodcock or Snipe will turn up this month, plus a duck species or two, Teal or Mandarin being the most likely.
I visited the lakes first off, but found nothing of interest at all on them, just the usual MALLARDS and MOORHENS were present
The usual Mallards, these were on the smaller of the 3 water bodies.
This is the ornamental lake, nothing on here but a few Moorhens, the main lake was totally devoid of birds today.
The adjacent Scrubby Woods had plenty of GOLDCRESTS to scan through, I was trying to turn one into a Firecrest, but had no success. COAL TIT, NUTHATCH and TREECREEPER were also seen, but didn't pose for the camera today. The Wet Woods had GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, STOCK DOVE, more Goldcrests to scan through, plus another couple of Nuthatches and Treecreepers of note.
This is the view as I leave the Wet Woods, looking North across the Ashes Lane Fields. The first fence line runs along the drainage ditch, the boxed hedge further back hides Ashes Lane, beyond that is part of the Greenhouse Grounds, then the pasture and paddocks of Migrant Alley.
This is another view of the drainage ditch that runs across the two Ashes lane Fields, good wildlife habitat, but it's probably on borrowed time, being too untidy for the landowner.
At least 7 MEADOW PIPITS flew about as I crossed the above fields, as did the GREY WAGTAIL again, finally heading of to the Greenhouse Grounds, which was my next stop.
This BUZZARD was soaring up over the Greenhouses as I arrived, it moved off over to the sheep pasture at Migrant Alley, putting up all the ROOKS and JACKDAWS
The best of what was seen at the Greenhouse Grounds were; A flock of 12-15 SISKINS feeding in the line of Alders, along with 4 LESSER REDPOLL in with them, the female KESTREL sitting up on one of the greenhouses and a pair of BULLFINCH feeding on dried blackberry seeds, good to see them on this part of my patch. I set to taking some photo's of the Siskin, whilst I did, a flock of 37 FIELDFARE flew over.
Male Siskin in the Alders
I took quite a few images of them, i'll post some more tomorrow ;-)