Its the fag end of the year and enthusiasm is flagging as usual. Not much point rushing out to see something which is still going to be around in February. Yes it's winter birding, nothing much is going to change for months unless something really ludicrous turns up, like last winters Brunnich's Guillemot.
Anyway the weather has been a bit up and down so in need of something to do I did the usual thing when things are quiet and went down to Amwell yesterday where it is really quiet. Took my camera-only just realised that I have not taken any photos for nearly a month now.
Bit surprised at the amount of ice on the lane when I got there. Had a bit of a frost at home but guess it was much colder in the valley. Some ice on the edges of Hardmead Lake as well. Maybe as a result, it was rather empty as wildfowl numbers were really down on my last few visits. The freeze has made Snipe more visible, with the odd one flying around every now and again-to the satisfaction of the female Sparrowhawk that seems to enjoy hunting them. Gull numbers low as well, with only a few Lesser and Greater Black Backs loafing. Bill was feeding the view point Robin with cheese as usual.
Went for a bit of a walk round the woods which seemed rather quiet and headed down to Hollycross. Picked up the Treecreeper near the river.
The Marsh Tit was seen near the feeders which were attracting Pheasants and tits but not much else. There are a few Redwing and Song Thrushes in the Hawthorns but the berries are running out.
Got back to the view point and had nice views of the Red Kites which seemed to be displaying and a few Buzzards. Picked up the Goldeneye which had been elusive earlier, and the Sparrowhawk came back, flushed a Snipe and we were treated to a great chase-the Snipe got away. Had a bit of a chat and
got some info on Goosander and Smew from Barnet Dave in the valley-something for a later day perhaps over Christmas.