Friday, 18 December 2009


Last night we had a big fall of snow, similar to what we got in February. As a result, most of the town seems to have ground to a halt. Luckily I had the day off and could for once enjoy what is these days a pretty rare event.
Having cleared about four inches of the stuff off the feeders, disturbing the waiting Robin, I spent some time waiting to see what would arrive. Seven House Sparrows, two Starlings, two Blue Tits and a Dunnock came down over the next hour-pretty normal but I did get two Great Tits which are not at all frequent. One of them sat for a while on a fence post and proceeded to bathe in the snow, something I have not noticed before.
At 0930 I went for a walk out to the countryside east of Stevenage. Most of the time, the snow was around four inches deep, but in a few places there were drifts waist deep. Birds were of course rather infrequent. A few Skylarks could be heard moving west, and two Lapwing were a surprise. More expected were thrushes and tits. I found a large flock of Long Tailed Tits which also contained a few Blue and Great Tits. There were several small flocks of Fieldfare, and every now and again I encountered Redwings, Blackbirds and the occasional Mistle Thrush. A single Kestrel was the only bird of prey.

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