What a great morning to be around the reserve!
It was definitley worth the 5:20 alarm call this morning to arrive with the sun shining, not a cloud in the sky and birds singing everywhere.
I came early to do our third bird survey ,with Juliette, one of our volunteers.
We saw a flock of 17 crossbills flying overhead, a couple of common whitethroats, and willow warblers, blackcaps and chiff chaff's were calling from the woodland.
5 fieldfares were still on Sandy ridge, it can't be long before they depart to their breeding grounds.
Over the road on the stubble field, opposite the reserve entrance, we saw a wheatear, a lovely end to our mornings surveying.
If you come over to look for it yourself, please take great care crossing the fast and busy road.
Places are going fast for the Dawn Chorus walk on Sunday May 02nd.
Please call 01767 680541 if you would like to come along.
A full english breakfast is reward for the 5am start!, ...but to experience the sounds and sights of the reserve as it comes to life is the real treat on this event.
A cracking male ring ouzel was on the stubble field opposite the reserve entrance.It was close to the path, near the pylon in the N/W corner, along with 2 Fieldfares.
A visitor had told us that 2 ring ouzels were showing earlier in the afternoon.
The first cuckoo at The Lodge this spring was calling from trees on the heath,near the drive.
An orange tip butterfly fluttered along near the hide and 2 jays were on an old, broken tree stump, pulling away at the bark.
A flock of around 20 crossbills flew over, calling, heading towards pines on the hillfort.
A woodlark was singing on the new heath, at around 8am his morning.This is very exciting as we have been restoring this area of heathland to attract woodlarks, as well as for nightjars and dartford warblers in future years.
We'll all be listening out to see if any nightjars do arrive during May!