Spring has sprung (Part 1)

Had quite a nice weekend with a couple of trips to either side of the county.On Saturday I had a walk around Skipwith Common, somewhere I've never been before.

Parked upo in the car park at about 7.00am and the air was full of birdsong, willow warbler,robin,great tit,wren and chiff-chaff creating a delightful tune.

As I walked into the reserve nearer the pools the wildfowl became more apparrent with grey-lag goose little grebe,teal and mallard all putting in an appearance.The continuous song of willow warbler and chiff chaff prevailed.

Next a mistle thrush proclaiming its right to sing the loudest followed by a whole range of the tit family blue,great,coal,willow and long-tailed.

A clearing made for a good photo opportunity and the wrens were certainly obliging.

The sun popped in and out but it never got above chilly, 3 swallows overhead reminded me that it was supposed to be spring, but a shiver was never far away.

As I walked back to the car I saw a light coloured bird flit from bush to bracnch, I was somewhat disappointed when I discovered ot was only a female stonechat with its mate waiting in the wings, damn I thought it was something far more unusual.

By now the wind was biting but I still managed green woodpecker great spotted woodpecker and a fleeting jay before I got back to the car park.

I was greeted by a loud robin and just as was about to put my scope away a pair of treecreepers hung around briefly before disappearing.

On the way out I spotted a pair of red legged partridges and managed some fairly decent shots.

My next port of call was Allerthorpe woods, nothing particularly special except a singing yellowhammer and flock of linnets.

It wa here that I got the message about the black-necked grebe at Tophill Low.I got there at about 1.00 only to find the grebe at the other side of D reservoir so a quick route march round to the east hide and latched on to the grebe it was heading headlong towards the hide i'd just been in, so I marched back again (one way to get warmed up!).The grebe was about 100yards away, fantastic bird.