Wednesday 21st January

The floods are still very full and this is continuing to make for rather difficult birding conditions on the Patch. They have started to recede just enough for a few "islands" of grass to start appearing though the gull roost is still rather small - the abundance of attractive flooded fields across the county means that gulls are presently rather spoilt for choice. The only bird of note of late has been a 1st winter YELLOW-LEGGED GULL.

There not much action on the wader front though the five overwintering REDSHANK are still about. The usual ducks are still spread out over the "lake" with a count of 26 PINTAIL last night and a smattering of Gadwall to add some interest to the mix. There are usually a few GOOSANDER about with a peak count of 11 last week. The LITTLE GREBE is still hanging out along the Castle Mill Stream though in the flooded conditions it seems to prefer skulking in the reeds to being out in the open. Along the same stream the Great Crested Grebes have started their elegant courtship dancing.

Additions to the year list since my last posting have included a MARSH TIT along the Castle Mill Stream and the Medley Farm NUTHATCH which was coming to the bird table by the Sea Scout Hut. The resident Kestrel near the Perch Inn is still about and a Red Kite is hanging about there as well. In addition Liam Langley has managed to add Reed Bunting, Skylark, Bullfinch and PEREGRINE to the list. With a tally of 71 birds we are now fast approaching the target that I set of 75 birds by the end of the winter.

Three of the five Redshank on one of the grass islands

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