Savernake and the Downs

I had to fit my birding in around a bit of shopping and an appointment at the opticians this afternoon. As this was in Marlborough I decided to start off with an hour or so in Savernake. For a change I went to Ashlade Firs which is on the eastern side of the forest. Parking near to the “Amity Oak” I just took a gentle stroll along towards Luton Lye Cottages and back. Apart from a small flock of Chaffinches the most numerous species was Goldcrest with at least six seen. A couple of Nuthatch were heard but could not be found. Two Buzzards were flying around calling loudly until drowned out by the sound of an Army Lynx helicopter which spent a few minutes in the area. Certainly an unfair contest. A Jay flew across one of the clearings and a Roe Deer ran across the track ahead of me. Best bird was a Marsh Tit which was eventually tracked down after I heard it calling. It was busily collecting moss, presumably preparing a nest. I then headed into Marlborough and as I was a few minutes early had a wander along the river. Only Coot, Moorhen, Mute Swan and Mallards seen. On the way home I made a  quick stop on the Downs. A flock of around thirty Chaffinches was checked for Brambling with no luck. Also seen were Yellowhammers and Corn Buntings plus singles of Buzzard and Kestrel. A quick walk with the dog as it was getting dark added a lone Redwing and a few Pied Wagtails on the local flood water. P1170075 (1024x738)

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