Friday, 3 January 2014

Friday 3rd. January 2014

Got out in yesterday's sunshine and headed for Bough Beech Reservoir , finding it full to overflowing after all the recent rain and the water company taking the opportunity to fill up . The amount of water meant that it had flooded all the vegetation around the edges , and the few birds that were seen were tucked up deep in that vegetation . Just a few Fieldfares feeding on the fallen apples in the orchard and nothing exciting on the feeders , so I decided to return to Old Lodge Reserve on Ashdown Forest , a very soggy reserve at this time . I made straight for the area where I had seen the Parrot Crossbills on my last visit , but failed to find any , so headed off on a circuit , finding very little of interest , apart from hearing a Wood Lark , not in full song , seemingly just tuning things up for later .
Getting back to the previous sighting area , two birders were scanning the same Pine tops where several Parrot Crossbills were now feeding , but once again , high up and often hidden , but every now again they showed better and in the pleasant sunshine it was most enjoyable , apart from wet feet , as I hadn't taken willies with me . After some time , they all took off and flew to their favourite tree , preparing to drop down to drink at their favourite puddle . Having drunk , they flew around and most of the flock landed briefly in a nearby broad-leaved tree . The light on those birds not half hidden by branches was not great , but a few shots were managed , mainly of one particular male .
Later on , I found a couple of males feeding quietly , lower down , and through surrounding branches managed to get some closer shots of the bill .

On the way back home , I found the first wild flowers of the year , Winter Heliotrope / Petasites
fragrans , a member of the Daisy family , in it's usual place near Keston Church .
Just got an email that tomorrow's hedgelaying has been postponed because of the weather .
At least it means my feet will stay dry .


Warren Baker said...

That is one spectacular bill Greenie :-)

Bluebells here already pushing through, they are ahead of what they were last March!

Phil said...

Such an exotic looking bird Greenie. I think they are still in situ at Sissinghurst so if we get a dry day next week (ha ha) I might go and have another look.

Alan Pavey said...

Nice pics Greenie and a great bird to see :-)