This evening I had a walk on patch, and got the increasingly rare thing that is a patch tick… I was watching the swallows at Old Wheel Dam, and noticed there was a martin among them. Presuming it was a house martin (a lot earlier than my first there last year), I had a look through binoculars and realised it was a brown bird with a band across its breast – a completely unexpected sand martin!
Elsewhere in the Valley were a few stock doves (five at Old Wheel Farm, and one in the nest box opposite Loxley Park nursing home), a singing blackcap opposite the house, a couple of willow warblers en route, and a pair of linnets at Old Wheel Farm, the first I’ve seen in the valley for a while. A curlew was heard at Old Wheel Dam, and great spotted woodpeckers were present at Stacey Bank and Black Lane.
Here’s the only photo I got today, a pied wagtail at Old Wheel Farm.