For the first time in many years I decided that the time had come to check out the wildlife possibilities closer to home without using the car. We live right on the edge of an area of 'green belt' that comprises arable farmland, a Country Park (including an Equestrian and Sports Centre) with extensive horse paddocks, small pockets of deciduous woodland, a number of very tiny ponds and rough pasture. After leaving the housing estate the path takes me past very noisy dog kennels and the uphill between the farm fields. Occupants in the fields were Carrion Crows and Magpies. Robin and Blue Tit in the hedgerow with very noisy Rose-ringed Parakeets passing overhead.
All the horses I saw have already donned their winter jackets.
View over the extensive paddocks
While unsucessfully trying to get shots of some Redwing feeding on berries, constantly disturbed by dog walkers, I spied this Fox traversing the grassland and disappearing into one of the small woods. Shortly afterwards a Stoat shot across the path in front of me. As expected Woodpigeons are common and I also saw Collared Doves, Green Woodpecker, Kestrel hovering over the nearby Cottage Hospital, Greenfinch plus overflying Black-headed and Herring Gulls.
My homeward journey through Castle Hill Woods produced the most avian activity; Blue, Great and Long-tailed Tits feeding high in the canopy, Jay, Blackbird, Crows, plus Nuthatch calling and at long last the chance of snapping a male Great Spotted Woodpecker. (The pic had to be heavily cropped).FAB.