Now this is going to seem a bit silly now that the sun has come out but having a day off from the reserve yesterday, see my last post, I was anxious to get down there early this morning and continue my increasingly neurotic pursuit of the elusive spring migrants.
Well, quite frankly, I should of gone later because it was bloody freezing. Heavy grey skies were blowing in off the sea in strong NE winds and despite thermal gloves and my winter coat back on again it was really uncomfortable. And still being able to see winter visitors such as 13 White-fronted Geese as I arrived only added to the bleak and foreboding feel of the place.
Anyway coat collar up I headed off for the larger of the reed beds, still looking to add Sedge Warblers to my meagre total of spring birds, but it was quickly apparent that that was not going to happen today. Even if there had been any warblers in there it was impossible to hear anything due to the wind rattling through the stems and bending them over. I did get a snatch of song from our resident Cettis Warbler and note both a Mute Swan and Greylag Goose on their nests, but that was about it for the reed beds.
I left the shelter of them behind and headed out into the open marsh and for a while worked my way round some of the ditches in the hope of recording some Coots nests on the breeding lists for this year, but once again I found nothing, easily the latest that I've gone without one or two of their nests.
There's never any hiding place on a marsh in weather like that and with the cold and lack of birds starting to depress me I have to admit that I packed up earlier than normal today and guess what, as I made my back along the Harty Road the sun started to break through and what a difference that made to the whole feel of the place. Lambs that had been snuggled in behind their mother's backs as I went out, now began to spring into life in the extra warmth as I stopped to look at them. Watching them scamper around in small groups is liking watching children in a school playground and they even seem to invent similar games, or is that just me letting my imagination run a bit too wild!
Perhaps tomorrow will be warmer, I hope so.