We headed to Surrey to pick up David and then ventured on to Combe Wood in Berkshire to what seems like a last surviving area for the Willow Tit down south. What a place! I loved it here and will certainly try for another visit - hopefully the Willow Tits will still be around.
A leisurely stroll up hill surrounded by an amazing view. The first thing of note was the kronk of a Raven. Not to be seen at this moment but it was close. On a little further and we were treated to superb eye view Red Kites in the adjacent field. Then they were there......from each direction Ravens. We counted 10 but they were mobile in and out of the woodland and behind out of view this figure could easily be more.
Slowly we made our way towards the woodland when we heard a Bullfinch, we looked and find it along with numerous others; from this point on wards they were everywhere it seemed; well probably not everywhere but easily double figures. We left Adrian and his lens and headed further down.
Within a couple of minutes we had a call from Adrian; he had heard then seen briefly a Willow Tit. We rushed back up the hill; well rushed as fast as you can carrying scopes cameras, sound recording equipment through sticky mud. The Willow Tit had headed into a small area of trees. We followed in slowly moving forward. We all heard the little space ray gun when it went off and gladly i managed to get in on one bird, whilst David was on another. Tick Tick Boom.
We headed now to the wood itself, numerous Goldcrests, Coal Tits and a stunning Tawney Owl which silently flew from a nearby tree into the unseen.
Finally before the return walk more Willow Tits, even three in one binocular view. Probably 6 birds in total;
|Courtesy of David Darrell-Lambert|
So from here we headed south for the New Forrest and Acres Down. After parking up we headed to the top of the hill and made our stand for Goshawk. It wasn't looking great, it was dull and cold. We waited for a while and then decided to make a move; it was then we noticed a flock of Hawfinch. We headed over and in total throughout the afternoon saw 28+ birds.
Shortly after a female Goshawk flew across the vista from left to right. The Hawfinches spent the rest of the afternoon flying about calling providing good viewing as they went. Numerous other birds included Redpoll, Greenfinch, Siskin, Raven & 4 Crossbill made the afternoon. SO the Goshawk was lifer number 2 Tick Tick Boom.