They're back! A pair of Stonechats keeping close company opposite the rowing club on the marsh. It seems like such a long time, two winters in fact. Last Autumn none arrived and I was beginning to fear that we would not see them this winter either. They must have been shifted from some other site due to the snowy weather. Whatever the cause it brings me a great deal of pleasure to see them on a cold traipse around the marsh of a Winters day. Duly added to my patch year list (128 if you are counting)
A few Snipe were flying around the marsh too and I inadvertently flushed a Woodcock out of the Horseshoe Thicket. There were 6 Linnet on the Horse field and a small party of Chaffinch under the Little Owl Tree, probably a risky spot especially as there was a Little Owl up there. They are 'easy' to see now that the leaves have all gone. I wonder if the Finches will lure something more exotic in...Yellowhammer, or better, would be nice. Finally a single Fieldfare was around the paddocks, perhaps a precursor of more to come now the thaw is here.
Had a very reasonable brunch in the Waterworks N.R. Cafe and also checked their (hopelessly out of date) 'what's about' board.....oh dear the Nuthatch of a couple of weeks ago was apparently on foreign territory, the Middlesex Filter Beds, which though only 50 yards over the Walthamstow patch border might as well be on the Moon, so off the list it goes, still it can stay on the radar as we might get one, one day.