Day four of our winter trip was more about the journey home and getting around the M25 whilst it was flowing freely. That said, there were still a couple of sites that we intended to visit in order to boost the trip list by a few more species.
This is a site that we have visited on many occasions in the past, as it is a site where Tree Sparrow is almost guaranteed. It is also usually a good site for Little Owl, but we have only ever seen them there once, so it is by no means guaranteed. It has to be said that this site was the best site for finches and buntings that we had been to all weekend. It was heaving with Chaffinches, Reed Buntings, Greenfinches, Goldfinches, Bramblings and Tree Sparrows. There were also good numbers of Fieldfares and Redwings and around the small pond loads of Teal and Greylag Geese. The only disappointment with this site was the lack of any Yellowhammers, a species that has eluded us this year.
The final stop of our trip was to the Wildfowl and Wetland Trusts reserve at Welney. We haven't been here for a couple of years, but were tempted by the possibility of a Green-winged Teal, that had been seen the day before, and Bean Geese. Of course there was also a guarantee of Whooper and Bewick's Swan, and other wildfowl that had eluded us so far.
We quickly ticked off Whooper Swan, Pochard and Tufted Duck but there was no sign of our other quarry.
|Whooper Swan - Welney|
|Whooper Swans - Welney|
|Pochard - Welney|
After Welney we started our journey home scanning the fields looking for flocks of Swans. It was not long before we picked up a large one, and after a quick scan we picked up a handful of Bewick's Swans.
By this time it was early afternoon and we decided to head home. It had been another successful trip and we had recorded 120 species during our four day trip. There had been many highlights but the best as always was the company. We had been blessed with good weather, albeit a bit cold at times, and had seen some cracking birds.