I had another before school visit to Arcot Pond this morning. No sign of any Geese but dotted around the pond there were 1 Cormorant, 7 Coot, 2 Little Grebe, 9 Mallard, 6 Teal, a pair of Pochard, 2 pairs of Gadwall, 5 Goldeneye ( a good number travelling together across the Pond), 4 Tufted Duck and 1 Drake shoveler- Patch Tick.
A male Sparrowhawk was being mobbed by Jackdaws down the lane and a Roe Deer was feeding in the reeds at the south west corner next to two Reed Buntings.
Everything seemed more nervous this morning, all of the birds at one point lifted off the pond and circled before landing again. I was looking for a Peregrine or something but I couldn't see anything that would cause panic amongst the crowd.
The Shoveler (a bird that does what it says on the tin), was hiding behind two Mallards at first but flew from behind them into the open.
I was looking back on my patch year list and thinking what a good winter it has been on the patch with suprises like Tree Sparrow and Jack Snipe, I would have liked to get Whooper Swan, Wigeon and Goosander but it just makes from September onwards more interesting.
There seemed to be a movement of Whooper Swans heading north over the weekend so I could still get lucky and hear a few passing overhead.
I'm now keeping my eyes and ears peeled for Chiffchaff, Wheatear and maybe a White Stork overhead, even if it if the plastic bird.
Shoveler - 72