By Jennifer Johnson
Would the committee sanction heated hides and a tea wagon (including butties of course), was on the minds of the 17 bodies huddled in the main hide against the persistent rain on this grey and cold Saturday walk day? Paul, our leader, was in despair at this being the fourth in succession with similar inclemency.
Never mind things were not so bad, the feeders were colourful with the usual tits, finches and buntings , 5 Snipe whizzed back and forth Oystercatchers called rowdily right in front of us, and what seemed like swarms of Swallows and Martins, high and low, came increasingly close. Yes spring has arrived. 27 species were seen from here.
Eventually folk went their various ways, those staying on site were pleased to have seen Mandarins, Goldcrest, a Jay bathing and House Martin , whilst another 4 who did venture along the West Bank were rewarded with Buzzard, Treecreeper, Long- tailed tits, Fieldfare, Chiffchaffs within touching distance and very wet, disconsolate looking Herons on their nests .
Altogether 44 species were logged , 11 shy of last year’s total.
Blackbird , Black-headed Gull , Blue Tit , Bullfinch , Buzzard, Canada Goose , Carrion Crow , Chaffinch , Chiffchaff , Coot , Cormorant , Dunnock , Fieldfare , Goldcrest , Great Crested Grebe , Great Tit , Greenfinch , Grey Heron , Greylag Goose , House Martin , Jay , Lapwing , Lesser Black – backed Gull , Little Grebe , Long-tailed Tit , Mallard , Magpie , Mandarin Duck , Moorhen , Oystercatcher , Pheasant , Pied Wagtail , Pink-footed Goose , Reed Bunting , Robin , Sand Martin , Snipe , Song Thrush , Swallow , Teal , Tree Creeper , Tufted Duck , Wood Pigeon , Wren.