If I was to ask you, ‘what colour is spring?’ what would you say? Despite overcast skies in the Dearne Valley today, there was plenty of colour about - and some of it had wings.

Here is today’s summary of sightings…

The amazing Karen Williams was Houghton way this morning and recorded fifty-four snipe, eighteen lapwing, eighteen pairs of reed bunting and three yellowhammer at Little Houghton. On the nearby washlands, she added six chiffchaff, six skylark, two oystercatcher, two buzzard, eight more snipe, twenty more yellowhammer and – perhaps best of all – a male redstart! Top work there Karen!

Five of the eleven avocet at Adwick this morning

At Adwick Washland this morning the highlights included: one pink-footed goose, one Egyptian goose, two yellow wagtail, three wheatear, one house martin, eleven avocet and one green sandpiper. Add to those skylark, blackcap, redshank, meadow pipit, chiffchaff and a calling green woodpecker and it’s no wonder many of the dog-walkers have taken to carrying bins!

An oystercatcher on the Mere

At Old Moor today I tried a small experiment. Just how far on to the reserve do you have to go before you hear a bittern?

The answer turns out to be not very far at all. In the Tree Sparrow Farm today Reedbed 5’s booming male bittern could easily be heard! Roughly every fifteen minutes this afternoon.

Female goosander on the Wader Scrape

And as for the colour of spring? Well, I’m going to put in a case for ‘yellow’. So to finish tonight’s blog, here’s my evidence – a close-up of a yellowhammer from Old Moor today.

Until next time.

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