This time of year birdwatchers need to use their ears. The birds are there but often hidden behind the foliage so recognising bird calls and songs is a key skill. I'm no expert in this area although I am getting better.Walking down the wooded Eyes Lane I managed to pick out a blackcap (and saw it too so knew I was right!), chaffinch, robin, mistle thrush (but no song thrush I'm sad to say), blue and great tits and pheasants. Looking into a field opening, I saw a grey partridge take flight. There were also a couple of swallows swooping around and a kestrel disappearing over the treeline.
I decided to take the path over the fields and saw reed buntings. The farmer had wisely flattened the path with his tractor so walkers don't stray and disturb the birds so much. But what a cacophony when I crossed the bridge into a field of bare ground and low weeds! I was surrounded by ten lapwings wheeping at me and then a pair of redshanks started circling me with their piercing piping calls and just as I was reaching the end of the field a lark trilled up. I'll certainly remember not to upset them again until the breeding season is over.
More larks and pipits started up as I walked along the embankment of the Mean High Water and I'm almost sure I heard sedge warblers. Back Lane rewarded me with tree sparrows (red status) and red-legged partridges.
A lovely Sunday morning.
Reed Bunting photo by Dave F Barker. Grey Partridge and Sedge Warbler by Richard Spencer - thanks guys.