Yesterday was the first opportunity I have had to visit the eastern extremities of the patch. It was quite a productive visit. I took Bennyboy to the wooded part of the reserve and he kindly flushed a Woodcock for me....NS...usuful tools these canine friends and I always clean up after him! A Fox was eating something in the field to the north of the main pond.
A third of the pond was still covered in ice but it was dominated by Gulls...Herring gulls. I was in counting mode but after over 900 HG another 500 or so descended on the pond. The highlight was the above Iceland gull which spent half an hour on the pond before flying north. Another noteworthy gull was Lesser black backed. Also on one of the islands were 18 Moorhen.
I visited Longhirst flash; 500+ Wood pigeon here and seven Reed bunting as well as small numbers of wildfowl. At Bothal pond there were plenty of Gulls here and 163 Teal and 204 Wigeon.