Tuesday, 2 April 2013


After Friday's horrors it was good to get some healthy lambs born especially an Easter set of twins on Easter Sunday morning. By late morning things looked quiet in the lambing field so I was happy to go to Minsmere for the afternoon. A walk around the scrape gave us 4 Smew including a splendid drake, one of my favourite ducks and, after patiently waiting for a likely candidate to wake up, a 3w Caspian Gull. It was pleasant afternoon with warmth in the sun and good numbers of Avocets and a Ruff starting to develop a white ruff hinted at spring but there were still no Chiffchaffs or Blackcaps singing in the woods. However at Island Mere hide I finally caught up with my first summer migrants of 2013, a pair of Garganey showing superbly well right in front of the hide.

At this point a small blizzard came through and the temperature plummeted several degrees. Winter had fought back.

Back home a Romney ewe had produced another set of twins but with a twist. One of the lambs was inexplicably black or to be more precise a smoky body with pitch black extremities. Romneys are always white and the Southdown sire was white too. Here she is:

She'll probably get a name and end up in the breeding flock if she stays this colour.

Yesterday was uneventful apart from a Patch year tick in the form of 2 Oystercatchers flying over the house putting me on 89 species for the Patch this year. This morning I flushed a Woodcock from the bottom of the vegetable garden, a surprise this late in the year. I'm still waiting for the first summer migrant here.

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