With all the building work going on behind my garden during the first half of the year, the chances of the 2010 garden bird list reaching the 2009 level looked remote – until the end of the year!!! No doubt due to the really hard weather, December turned out to be a really magical month, with the last week in the year easily being the best, and probably 28th December, or possibly 30th December, being the best day of the year. On 28th our postage stamp suburban garden hosted 2 Brambling, 2 Lesser Redpoll (year tick), 4 Redwing, 1 Fieldfare, 1 Blackcap, 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 Song Thrush, plus all the other birds that are usually seen on pretty much a daily basis. The 30th was also a great day as the Brambling and Redpoll were still with us, but we had our first Reed Bunting for about 20 years.
The 2010 garden total (birds that actually landed in our garden - no ‘fly overs’) was 31 – three more than last year. Seen last year, but not this, were Bullfinch and Siskin. Seen this year, and not last, were Fieldfare, GS Woodpecker, Brambling, Reed Bunting, and Grey Heron.
With all these birds around, it has been particularly frustrating that, following Christmas Day’s sunshine, the weather has been continually dull, grey, and damp. Any photography that I have managed has had to be at ISO 1600, usually at about 1/100th of a second – which is not good, handheld on a 400mm lens! However, I have managed some ‘record images’ and a few that are a little better than that.