FROSTY MARSTON

Met up on a cold and frosty but nice and sunny Sunday morning with Dave Roberts at the Marston STW car park. First point of debate for us was when Dave asked me if I had seen the 6 Grey Partridge fly over the road, “yep I did”, boots on and a walk down to the road to scan the field they landed in but no GP’s to be seen.

No birds hardly from the hide, couple of Swan’s, Mallard and singles of Moorhen, Coot and Gadwall. While walking Dave said “keep your eye on the sky as we could get a passing skein of Pink Feet over” Soon we were off walking down Viking Way, soon we were on a Grey Wagtail.

A small group of Lesser Redpoll were next birds of interest, scanning carefully for a possible Mealy type we were again disappointed, none seen. The Redpolls were joined by good numbers of Reed Bunting (mainly female) in the same area.

Wren in good number were visible and audible all over the reedbeds and hedgerows along Viking Way.

A flypast by a Pipit sparked off a discussion as to whether the call was that of a Meadow or Rock – this was not concluded either way! A Gadwall flew low enough to enable me to get a decent BIF image.

Then from the thick vegetation a Snipe burst into the air, nice to achieve a few nice if distant BIF shots of this elusive bird.

Now at the Works end a pair of Stonechat were seen.

Making our way back down Viking Way heading towards the hide Dave’s earlier Pink Feet prediction came true when we watched a group of 150+ Pink Footed Geese heading eastward high in the cloudless blue sky.

Here Dave and I parted our ways with him heading back home walking back with birder Richard who we met on Viking Way whilst I stayed a little longer.

I am glad I did as I then saw the third Stonechat of the morning, another female, the bird was active crossing over Viking Way from the reed bed to perch high on the hedgerow and then to go back deep into the reed bed. Two Kestrels were working the reed bed area.

Passing the end of the scrape on Viking Way a couple of lively Goldcrest were seen and I managed an image through the tree it was hiding in.

When at the car park taking off my soaking wet boots a Sparrowhawk glided over heading towards the A1.