Thursday 5th January

Despite very strong winds that only a madman would be out birding in, I went my first visit to the Meadow for quite a while today and was pleased to see how healthy the floods look. I was also amazed at the sheer numbers of birds present. There must easily be over one thousand duck and a couple of thousand black-headed gulls alone in what was a reasonable sized roost today. There were quite a few noteworthy birds about today to get the new Year List off to a good start with COMMON SHELDUCK, a red-head GOOSANDER, two RUFF, a single DUNLIN (reported by Richard Foster) and at least a dozen PINTAIL all on the floods. The golden plover flock was a healthy size with several hundred birds present. There was nothing of particular note in the gull roost though I didn't stay long due to the scope-shakingly strong winds.

Talking of Year Lists, Steve Goddard reported sightings of treecreeper, reed bunting, STOCK DOVE, greater spotted woodpecker and song thrush all in his Wolvercote garden this week.

Meadow teal

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