A brief stop on the way home this afternoon with the light fading fast to Epsom and Ashstead Commons which is to become a regular 'local patch' for me during 2009. No bins with me (shame) but I did see Moorhen, Mallard, Coot and Grey Heron on the Great Pond.
The commons are split into two separate reserves and incorporate a variety of habitats, mixed woodland, lowland heath and open grassland. However as this is a popular area I'm going to have to be 'The Early Birder' more often than not!
On Ashstead Common I will be keeping my eyes open for Little Owl and Woodcock plus, of course, all the migrant Warblers that will arrive throughout the spring to breed. One of the main features of Ashstead Common (200 hectares) is the collection of around 2000 ancient oak pollards. As we all know Oak trees harbour the highest numbers of species of mammal, bird and insects so there is every chance of a good mixture of sightings to come throughout the year.
A bad hair day!
On my way back to the car a Lesser-spotted Woodpecker flew over then landed somewhere high up in the trees and was constantly calling for over 5 minutes. Great another tick for 2009.
Finally, fingers in the sky?