As always I’m trying to catch up once again! Even though I’ve been only going out on my dog walks it’s always worth keeping an eye on what’s about, although in the morning at the moment because of the late sunrise I’m out well before dawn, but it means I often hear the Tawny Owls calling and often see Roe deer grazing.
We had some very cold weather with hard frosts in recent times so I went up Hambledon Hill to catch the dawn, which was spectacular with the moon setting in the Blackmore Vale. I was lucky to see a Barn Owl quartering the slopes at the end of the hill, in the dark but I could see him quite well in the moonlight. I also saw a Hare near the village in the half light and aslo Roe deer grazing in the basin below the hill.
I’ve also been lucky to see the Bere Marsh Barn Owl by the Child Okeford footbridge. A Heron is also usually on the corner near the footbridge as are Moorhens, with passing Cormorants and there are signs of Otter movement.
We have also seen a Kingfisher in the same area with the water quite high at times they have had to find fishing spots in the stream or the flood waters, we are seeing him regularly along this stretch of river.
A Grey Wagtail has been a regular visitor on the corner of the river, either on the rafts of reeds that are coming downstream or the edges of the riverbank, he blends in to his surroundings very well so you have to watch for that Wagtail to see him.
Plenty of Crows about and I got this picture in the late afternoon light flying over the flooded meadows, stunning birds even though they are black.
I spot a Kestrel from our garden or down Greenway lane where I also see a number of Jays. I have seen at least two Snipe maybe three down in the meadow near Netmead and the stream near the bridge. They always surprise me by flying up at the last minute with their jerky flight. I wasn’t sure but had it confirmed by another person.
There are quite a number of Redwing about although they are very nervous, I see them near home and at Bere Marsh, also the odd Fieldfare although I haven’t managed to get close at all to them!
As always there are the small birds in the hedges, like Wrens, Long Tailed Tits, Great Tits, Blue Tits and Coal Tits who have returned to our feeders. Of course plenty of Robins, Blackbirds, Dunnocks and a few Greater Spotted Woodpeckers.
You can see the Grey Squirrels in the tops of the hedge/trees now the leaves are gone much to the enjoyment of my dogs, the Squirrels are to clever for them though!
The field at the back of our house has been reseeded with grass and I was looking out of the kitchen window and Spotted a Little Egret at the bottom of the field one day, next day two and then three they stayed around for a couple of days but then moved on, We really enjoyed seeing them there.
I can’t believe this year is drawing to a close but looking forward to some wildlife walks early in the year and into the spring, who knows what I will see.