As it turned a wee bit chilly this week the first signs of bird movement usually come in the shape of a Lapwing tumbling across the grey skies. And so it was. Tony got the first flocks while in the old sewage works, and another large flock when he met up with me on the side of Perch. Today we had a 124 going in all directions, that's over 300 already this year. And when you get Lapwing movement there sure to be other interesting birds looking for the proverbial service station of the air ways. It's not been as good as the Jack-Snipe-Goldie-Med-Gull-Lapwing bonanza of last year, or the Smew-Goosander-Grey Plover fest, but early days!. Bob picked up a Golden Plover calling as it went over Jub, where he also found the year's first Linnet, unfortunately he had to let the potential Woodlark go as it probably was a Skylark.
|Gulls love dog biscuits, who'd have guessed!|
Another patch tick for the year was a Dan H, apparently he has been wandering around incognito, and has yet to learn to wear all his clothes on days like this. He picked up the first Lapwing movement over Alex, which made Jono slightly jumpy as they were his main target. Didn't have to wait too long before another bunch of black and white clowns twiddled their way over the Alex south, probably Dan's birds having realised they were going the wrong way.
Off to the Roding just in case the Smew, seen briefly by Bob just a couple of day's ago, was hanging out where it should be. It wasn't, but a Little Egret was a year tick for B and J. Mine was a Fieldfare (the first in the Park). No Bullfinch so we pushed on round to find any open bits of water on the Ornamentals. It didn't take long as there's only 2 patches, a male Teal on one, and a few Tufties and Shoveler on the other. Back up the side of Perch and dip the Rail again. I think it's either inside a Heron or gone somewhere better, Spain would be my choice.
We parted company by the Shoulder of Mutton: Jono to take tea with an aunty, Bob to go and get his lunch and warm, and I had aspirations of going to Hyde Park for some reedlings that are brightening up the proceedings there. That didn't happen. As I passed Long Wood, I caught sight of two ducks arses flying away from me. Through the bins I was willing them to veer just so I could get a profile. It was only when they were over Motorcycle Wood that they did so. Surprisingly they were Goosander, my jinx broken, we can talk about them once more.
That decided it. A chance to grip off Jono while he supped tea and made polite conversation. It sort of petered out though. Three more Lapwing, 50 odd Fieldfare, a couple of Snipe and the loss of feeling in my very wet boots.