November 10th Fairburn

Unseasonally warm and much more sunny than forecast made for a lovely day at Fairburn today. Dragon flies were still sun bathing Down at Linn Dyke. A sparrow hawk made an appearance on three occasions or maybe it was three different sparrow hawks? A lovely female kestrel gave a fantastic display of wind control the sun illuminating her glorious black and tan patterning. I was just as thrilled to see a pair of beautiful stone chats in the reeds by the side of the path on the way to Linn Dyke hide, they were very accommodating perching high in the vegetation. I firmly believe that if you sit quiet something usually turns up and so it did today, at first i just thought it was a very tame and chirpy flock of long tailed tits that had come to join me in the bushes next to my bench, however there was a hidden gem -a lovely little delicate goldcrest foraging within three feet of me, a super delightful bird so unbelievably tiny! Redwings are beginning to inhabit the hawthorn bushes making their distinctive calls, I saw about a dozen today. The soft mud round the back of Linn Dyke revealed roe deer tracks. Up at Charlies hide there was a most peculiar heron he was sitting with his legs bent -as i've seen him do on the island before, only this time he was doing it in the water!! He looked like half a heron!! So i nicknamed him Arfur -he did look very strange. The other interesting thing was a lovely kingfisher who repeatedly flew out near the island and hovered for about 10 seconds-he eventually landed on the reed stumps before flying off again-i assume he was having trouble finding still water with all the flood water around. Finally on a less positive note can anyone tell me why dog walkers find it necessary to put their wet muddy dog onto the seats in the hide making it unuseable for people who come later? My opinion is long stated that dog walking is not compatible with the aims of a nature reserve. This is mainly because SOME owners are incapable of responsible behaviour. This is just the latest example.