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WEATHER: another very cold day, very dull to start with but brighter later. A very cold wind kept the temperature around 3-4C

For the last 15 or so years I have spent most of January in tropical rain forests in Sri Lanka, Colombia and Guyana, so this very cold spell is much more of shock to my system, I am not used to it and I don't like it.

Today I walked almost the same route as I did on New Year’s Eve, the main reason for this was because I lost a rubber ‘foot’ from my tripod on that day and today I looked for it.

My recent birthday means that I am closer than ever to being 70 years old!!! These last couple of days has made feel like it too! Yesterday I fell asleep just after lunch for 20 minutes and today, after going to bed last night at 10:30pm, I woke at 9:15am. That is almost an amazing 11hrs  sleep. Today I had another nap just after lunch, just call me gramps from now on.

I set out at 10:30am and walked towards Barwick and after watching a few Jackdaws on the chimneys of local houses I found a female Bullfinch in the roadside hedge. This was a new species for 2021 and number 71 on my list. I took a few record shots before moving on.

female Bullfinch

The next bird to go into the can was Eurasian Jay, two of them called loudly from an oak tree ahead of me and quite soon after I was watching Redwings and Fieldfares in a field near Barwick Park. My walk through Barwick Village was uneventful I saw House Sparrow, Collared Dove, Blue Tit & Great Tit, Dunnock and Robin.

a Jay

My trek across a couple fields toward Pavyotts Mill produced a single Mistle Thrush and lots more Fieldfares. I crossed the A37 and headed to Pavyott’s Mill where I found my lost ‘foot’, hooray!! My tripod was now complete, replete with three feet.


A cow field and a beet field held a lot of birds, Meadow Pipits, Stonechats, Pied Wagtail, Redwings, Linnets and in a bare patch I counted 34 Golden Plovers and over 50 Lapwings.

Once in Pavyott’s lane I found a couple more Bullfinches, a pair of Greenfinches, a Common Chiffchaff and a Coal Tit. The maize stubble field was full of birds too, I stood by a dung heap and watched a huge flock of Linnets, dozens of winter thrushes, more Meadow Pipits and a flock of about 100 Golden Plovers flew over.

Linnets in the maize stubble

My return journey took me through Rex’s Hollow down into Barwick Village and then on past Barwick Park. I saw Green Woodpecker, Jay (again), Pheasant and a huge mixed flock of Rooks and Jackdaws on the side of a distant hill.

there is a Green Woodpecker in this one

My feeders were busy when I got back, Nuthatch, Great Spotted Woodpeckers, Coal, Blue & Great Tits, Goildfinches, Blackbirds, Chaffinches, Robins and Dunnocks. A Song Thrush was feeding below the bushes on the edge of our lawn.