Sunday 15 February 2015

Garden list crawls to 77 with unexpected addition.

Spring has sprung... well some of our birds think it has anyway; Song Thrush, Dunnock, Wren, Great Tit and of course the local Robin are all in full song in the early morning. Whilst we still hang on in the hope of a stray Siskin or even Brambling on the feeders, and still hope that we can find a Redwing, which incredibly we still haven't seen, we did not expect our next new bird to be a winter visitor in the form of a goose.

Dunnock; an early songster willing Spring to arrive.

Since local birder Rob Norris reported that there was an Egyptian Goose hanging around with the swans near us I have been checking the goose flock with more attention, and perhaps it was this that highlighted among them this morning a smaller, stubby-billed individual, which, once the scope was on it revealed itself to be a Pink-footed Goose.

Pink-footed Goose (centre)  with Greylags (foreground) and Canada Geese (behind) for company. Not choosey then!

Now my suspicions are a) that it has been there for ages, I just haven't been checking the grey geese hard enough and b) that it is a feral bird; but since I admit to the list Greylags and Canadas, this would not seem to be an impediment for me including this bird too.

Pink-footed Goose with Canada Geese.

This brings our 'cottage list' to 77 and our 'cottage year list' to 50 with the additions in January of Common Teal and Herring Gull.

A couple of small thrushes that flew over today failed to call or show any evidence that they were as I both suspected and hoped, that they were in fact Redwings; I'll keep looking.

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