First to Brandon on Tuesday morning and after a cold start it wasn't long before the layers began to come off. I started the day at Big Hide and wasn't surprised to find the pool around 80% frozen. A first of the year Ringed Plover, (2) Oystercatcher, (7) Snipe, (3) Shelduck and (2) Great Crested Grebe the best of the hide visit. Unfortunately with so much water lying and even with the sluices wide open it seems to be taking an age for the East Marsh Pool to reduce in level, so patience seems to be the watchword!
A brief visit to Carlton Hide with Martin and Keith #2 and on the return to Big Hide for morning coffee the wonderful sight and sound of around fifty or so Wigeon dropping in.
|Bittern - mightily cropped image!
The Snowdrops and Daffodils are now starting to appear and pictured top-left one of the gorgeous Hazels in New Hare Covert now starting to display a wonderful array of catkins. Back at the volunteer car park the final notable of the visit was a single Grey Wagtail on the ground by the Lafarge works mixing plant.
|Sunset at Wigram's Turn Marina
Finally, I met up with Jim Rushforth at Coventry Airport this afternoon for a brief look at the large Linnet/Brambling flock reported in the flax field opposite the museums Vulcan Bomber. Bad timing on my part really as the now bitter easterly wind seems to have pushed them further back into the field for shelter and they simply didn't come close to the road. Although Jim connected with a few Brambling yesterday I'm sad to say my luck didn't seem to be in. However, one highlight was when around 100 or so Linnet, with a few Skylark mixed in, were attacked by a Sparrowhawk we'd been watching perched in a nearby Hawthorn, so not a wasted visit.