So December was a more successful month for me out in the field, primarily this was down to having days off work (I had to use up my remaining annual leave) and what better way of doing it than out on the patch 🙂
December 2nd – So I had planned to go walking around the field, but, there was the sound of shotguns. I wasn’t sure how close they were. I assume they were shooting pheasant or maybe the roe deer. As I have stated before they aren’t allowed to kill anything in the field, nor should they shoot in the direction of the field but to be on the safe side I thought it was best to monitor the garden birds instead! 1 great spotted woodpecker, 4 robin, 2 dunnock, 5 goldfinch, 5 blue tit, 3 great tit, 7 house sparrow, 5 starling, a coal tit, 2 chaffinch and a blackbird
December 13th – It snowed quite heavily in the region, unfortunately it had started to melt when I was back in work so only got to see a partially covered field.
December 14th – Today was a horrible day for travel, the road next to the patch was covered in black ice. There was already one car in the ditch and as I watched another car snaked all over the road and ended up in the entrance way to the barn. The lady was okay and got out of her car, though I later discovered she fractured her wrist. I was stood with her in the barn area and there was a heard of roe deer in the distance.
December 18th – Was another horrible day for travel. I hadn’t long parked up and was getting ready to go round the field when another car ended up in the ditch, this time at the field’s entrance. The road is horrendous for black ice. The awful part is you just watch people driving like its a summer day and wonder why they can’t stop when they brake!
I made my way out into the field through the owners back garden as the road wasn’t a safe place to be! The mute swans are back 🙂 there were six feeding on the crop! I’m sure the farmer isn’t too pleased to see them but I was 🙂 Last April there were approximately 40 grazing so I am expecting the numbers to increase. I walked a different route to normal as I was trying to avoid the accident. I didn’t see a lot, a pheasant that ran away very quickly and a great tit in the trees. There were other small birds about but they were difficult to see as the sun was in my eyes and they were just shadows. As I got closer to the river I noticed a huge number of woodpigeon; I counted approximately 96, they were all feeding on the crop too! The river is so much easier to see into now its Winter. I can even sort of tell where the edge of the bank is! Today I only spotted a wren, grey heron and a moorhen.
On the walk back up I stuck to my normal route, I did however quickly realise it was the much muddier choice! There were three advantages though; I briefly glimpsed two roe deer in the copse, a brown hare ran out from the hedgerow in front of me and a buzzard flew over. I know there are brown hare in the copse and I have seen them in the next field along but but this is the first time on my patch 🙂
December 22nd – I made a brief stop at the field, today there were 8 mute swans and the roe deer were grazing. I finally got to see the pale/white deer. Looking at the herd there are a wide variety of shades but the two pale ones really do stand out.
The garden bird count today showed: 2 great spotted woodpecker (a pair), 2 chaffinch, a robin, 2 great tit, 5 blue tit, 9 house sparrow, 6 goldfinch, 1 coal tit and 8 starlings.
I put the TrailCam out overnight on the 22nd, the fox was back. I think its the same one and I’m fairly sure now that shes a female 🙂