Icy and cold, not much chance of anything on the fell so I had a little wander down to the river at the park. I hoped there may be a plant or two where it could be a bit milder on the riverbanks, but they were just as fozen as the fell. In fact the footpath there was so icy it was treacherous. No new plants were noted so I had a play with the camera. The Whooper Swan from last winter which had been rung at York [see my note] has returned and if anything is tamer.
|all the way from ... York|
Last winter's Pink-footed Goose has also returned but there are only 2 Canada Geese present which he (or she) associated with so this year it's on it's own, on the grass bank on the park side of the river.
The river also held 41 Tufted Duck including a particulary noticable male with some grey in its flanks. It's normal Tufted Duck bill and head colour I think rules out any hybrid origins.
|Usual and grey flanked Tufted Ducks|
12 Goosander, 120 Mallard,
a Grey Heron and a couple of Cormorant made up the rest of the birds present,
Grey Heron in riverside Willow
though there there were in excess of 350 Black-headed Gull, plus a few Common, Herring and Great Black-backed Gull also there.
On the path by the nearby sewage works (which had 25 Pied Wagtail and a single Grey Wagtail) , 5 Bullfinch were hopping around or feeding on the adjacent weeds, with 5 Goldfinch and a couple each of Goldcrest, Great, Blue and Long-tailed Tit in the adjacent trees.
|Pair of Bullfinch|