This morning I woke and thought, why don’t I get up and go straight to the wood and have breakfast there? I’m on holiday. It was a beautiful spring morning, chilly but bright. So I made myself a flask of tea and a marmalade sandwich, and was at the wood by 7.30am.
I was greeted by blackbirds flying up the ride ahead of me, some great tits and lots of birdsong. Almost immediately I heard my first chiffchaff of the year, then I heard a snippet of what I believe was a garden warbler. We get them every year, but it takes me a while to get my ear attuned. There were several song thrushes singing, and wrens, blackbirds and robins too. I made my way to the fallen tree we use as a seat and had my breakfast there. A great spotted woodpecker was drumming regularly, a wren kept me company and two squirrels crazily chased up and down trees. I had a pair of mistle thrushes fly above me, going systematically from tree to tree. I could only guess that they were looking for a suitable fork to nest in. What surprised me though was that although they’re quite large birds, and were only just above me, I couldn’t hear them flying at all.
The floor of the wood is studded with wood anemones at the moment, and because I was early they were mostly still closed. There are a few bluebells in flower, but only those on the margins, I didn’t see any open further in. The clumps of primroses continue to flower, they seem to have been doing that for months already.
I continued round the edge of the wood and returned to my car. I saw a pair of chaffinches and lots of blue and great tits, but no marsh tits or long tailed tits. I heard a green woodpecker yaffling and I disturbed a jay.
I am so glad I went early this morning, I should do it more often. In fact I can’t think why I haven’t done it before.