Tuesday 11th March

For some time now the bird activity around my garden has stepped up a gear and all the males are now busy marking their territories with their singing - always such a joy to hear. Even the Jericho Red Kite has been very vocal of late, calling away as it wheels about over my house.

Today, as it was a gorgeously sunny spring morning, I decided to take a late morning walk around the Patch to see what I could find. There were quite a few spring flowers out in the Trap Grounds, including the first Colt's-foot, Winter Heliotrope and Lesser Celandines. A Tree Creeper was working its way up the trunks and Buff-tailed Bumblebees were on the wing. Winter Thrushes were noticeable by their absence - I found one Redwing today and that was it.

Buff-tailed Bumblebee on a Stinking Hellebore flower
Winter Heliotrope
Over on the Meadow the winter duck were dabbling about happily enough though it seemed to me that there were fewer in number than in previous weeks. There were still a couple of SHELDUCK and half a dozen or so PINTAIL about and also two REDSHANK near Burgess Field Gate - it's nice to see some waders again after what's been quite a while. With the first spring migrants now arriving in the country it shouldn't be too long now before we get our first Sand Martins and Little Ringed Plovers on the floods. Talking of the floods, whilst they're looking great at present they definitely need a bit of a top-up otherwise we will lose them all too soon so a few spring showers wouldn't go amiss.

The only news on the Year List front is a Kestrel, found by Mary MacDougall on Burgess Field a couple of days ago. Also Steve Goddard also had a fly-over CURLEW at the Trap Grounds, the day after I saw my bird last week.

Tree Creeper

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