Sue and I were down in Somerset for the weekend for a family party. Apart from birding on the journey we did manage to spend an hour at the RSPB reserve at Swell Wood on Sunday morning. This was the first time I had visited this reserve which contains the largest Heronry in the South West England. There were no Little Egrets to be seen although they too have begun to share the heronry. I understand they dont start to return to the nests till some weeks after the Grey Herons arrive back.
Apart from the Heronry the Wood was fairly quiet due to the cold, wet windy weather but the feeder station attracted a large number of Blue and Great Tits plus Common Chaffinches on the ground.
The best birds of the morning were 2 Coal Tits which came to the feeders, although they never stayed long, just taking a peck and then flying back into the undergrowth.
On the return drive we spotted a Red Kite at Thruxton in Hampshire, showing how far south they have spread from the Cotswolds.
Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Red Kite [sp] (Milvus milvus)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Common Kestrel [sp] (Falco tinnunculus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Coal Tit [sp] (Periparus ater)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)