Lade - cold, sunshine and cloud, NE 4 - Another frigid morning with single figure temperatures and a brisk wind out of the north. All three species of hirundines were over the lakes seeking out flying insects while a few more Reed Warblers had moved in overnight around the willow swamp to accompany the Chiffchaffs, Whitethroats and Sedge Warblers.
A long overdue visit to Scotney delivered our first Whimbrels (13 on the front fields and three over outback) of spring along with a lone Common Sandpiper flying over the main lake where also two Avocets, four Redshanks and eight Ringed Plovers. The lake on the Lydd side of the access road attracted numerous Black-headed Gulls to feed on emerging insects, plus an immature Little Gull. Outback was much quieter with only three Yellow Wagtails and two Corn Buntings noted on the farmland along with a scattering of Linnets, Reed Buntings and Skylarks, but not a sniff of a Tree Sparrow. More Black-headed Gulls swarmed over the lake by the workings where a pair of Teal and Wigeon noted, plus four Shovelers, a dodgy looking White-fronted Goose, two Little Egrets and a Kestrel. Whilst scanning the farm buildings on the walk back for Little Owl I was surprised to see a Barn Owl flying about in broad daylight.