A Touch of Frost at Nightingale Wood

It was a little colder than I expected this morning and there was actually some frost in the shade along the river. First thing I heard was a Song thrush, closely followed by rifle shots. No peaceful walk this morning. Heading down towards the Brook I had Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Blackcap,  Yellowhammer and Bullfinch. I noticed that they were Ringing down by the Meadow so changed my route slightly. Walking alongside the Brook towards the River Cole I had a brief glimpse of a Water Vole, a first here for me. Great Spotted Woodpecker was seen but Green was only heard as was a Cuckoo. A leisurely stop at the wetland area was rewarded with my first Lesser Whitethroat of the year. Also here were several Whitethroat and a Reed Bunting. Moving on I heard the reeling of a Grasshopper Warbler. Switching into tracking mode I eventually caught managed a brief glimpse of the bird which was deep inside a Hawthorn bush. I then caught a movement from the near my feet and saw another Gropper moving through the grass no more than six or so feet away. No chance of a picture but a good sighting. Heading back to the car I added a few more species to the list including Swallow and Skylark. Back at home there were a few House Martins and a Sparrowhawk seen. Late afternoon I went into Swindon to give blood. On the way home I decided on a quick look-in at Coate Water. A worthwhile stop with one each of Ringed and Little Ringed Plover, nine Yellow Wagtails and a Ruddy Shelduck. Also plenty of Pied Wagtails, two Lapwing, four Teal, a pair of Blackcaps and a Whitethroat.

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