Wow, November went out with a bang - and December came sweeping in in a big white coat. Edinburgh seems long ago and far away. My outing with the local RSPB group to Frampton Marsh went pretty well. I met an old colleague on the coach, so the journey went quickly. The reserve itself is quite new so it still feels a bit "under development", but there was plenty to see. It was quite busy as they had double booked, so as well as casual visitors there were 2 coach parties. At times, the hides were a bit congested. The real highlight for me was watching a barn owl hunting over the marsh shortly before we left. I got a few hasty shots, which turned out better than I expected - they might be used in the trip report, but it hasn't been posted yet. Weather permitting, I'll be going on the next trip to Tophill Low. I've also been on a couple of waxwing forays. Having the intel from Sheffield Bird Study Group really helped me to track them down, and I managed a number of sightings and quite a lot of photographs of varying quality. I like this one best, as it is against a green background, not the usual backlit sky, and I've managed to get the wing colours showing, which isn't the case on many other photos I've seen.
Pretty much everything I had in my diary for this week has been cancelled - a visit to a friend, a couple of bird-related events, my art class, my Mac workshop... I'm still not used to the fact that I don't actually have to do anything. I've been feeding the birds in the garden, of course, and spending a lot of time watching for new ones. Nothing new so far unfortunately, but plenty of the usual suspects: magpie, robin, blackbirds, dunnock, chaffinch, coal tit, great tit, blue tit, long tailed tit, wood pigeon, collared dove, feral pigeon, starling - oh and I did see a kestrel overhead yesterday, which is a first from the window.
As there is some sunshine forecast for tomorrow, I might get my boots and my Yaktrax on and get out to another stroll.