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Sunday, 23 March 2014

A weekend of recces

Today was a long walk around the Compton Bassett area, besides a full list of weather including thunder and lightning the wildlife was keen to make the most of the gaps between the showers. Perhaps my favourite was a singing mistle thrush, one of their names is 'storm cock' - perhaps due to them singing in March as they nest early, but certainly seemed spot on today! Other highlights included three roe beer bucks feeding quietly along a hedge taking no notice of me and a pair of bullfinch taking advantage of the sunny periods on top of a hazel bush.

The primroses are still in full flower, along with dog's mercury a woodland specialist that is always nice to find. The bluebell eaves were well out in a number of the woods I passed, so not long before the flowers are carpeting the woodland floor.

Saturday saw a walk on the downs above Calne to see if the wheatear had arrived. No luck on that front but there were many yellowhammer singing and squabbling over territories. The last of the fieldfare were heading north east back to their breeding grounds on the Continent.

In the afternoon I fitted in a quick walk along the river avon looking for kingfisher and grey wagtail, a cracking male kingfisher was the definite highlight sat quietly in a bush overhanging the river. A raven flew over with its crop and beak full of food, off to feed its young which will be a week or so old already. NA

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