vast improvement on recent visits,a lovely morning.The leval on the scrape has started to drop at last.I’m hoping we’ll get another special wader this year.

4 green sandpipers were in front of the hide on my first look and later this became 8 birds when I checked again.A little grebe was also there.

Buzzards were very noisy overhead and a couple of kestrels put in an appearance.Next up a marsh harrier showed,as if from nowhere,putting up 65 lapwings and 16 curlews.

Down the track a baby robin wore a shiny new ring,those Marston ringers don’t mess about,this bird looked like it had only recently fledged.

Lily, my dog was panting a bit now,she can’t stand the heat so we decided to sit down in the lush grass,it was time for a bit of the old ‘lay on yer back-skywatching’ technique,which turned out to be successful.I was trying to i.d. the overflying large gulls (mostly lesser black backeds),when I picked up a peregrine and then a hobby,making lots of mini stoops,hawking insects,quite high.Watched it for ages,but it wouldn’t drop low.

I was on 5 raptors now and knew if I waited long enough I’d get the obligatory sparrowhawk,there’s always one here.Sure enough,but only as I was walking back to the car.Stopped near Jericho wood to try for red kite but no luck.