Mainly in Cambridgeshire

A really good day out and about heading firstly to Paxton Pits where the smew were still present, two pairs on the pits accessed from Diddington village.  Nice to see two pairs here as they appear to be becoming much more scarce as a wintering species - maybe due to the warmer winters we are now experiencing.

Heading north from here, the three glossy ibis were mobile on an small area of nice marshy habitat at Earith that looked ideal for these southern wanderers.  Having only seen three ever before in the UK, this doubled my tally - they do look great in flight.


It was then a question of where to go from here.  The Norfolk coast was out of the question - the icy arctic wind would have been amplified further - it wasn't warm out there.

So it was onto Fen Drayton in the hope of some summer migrants that had been rather sparse over the last few days - the northly wind not helping their efforts of northward migration of course.

There were migrants here though, particularly hirundines with decent numbers of sand martin flying over the lakes with a few swallow making their way through - always great to see the first one of year as they wheeled around in pursuit of insects.  A first singing willow warbler of the year was also a welcome sight and sound.  Such an evocative refrain of the spring season.

The weather couldn't have been more juxtaposed to the kind of conditions you would associate with seeing these incredible migrants.  At least the sun was shining.

On Ferry Lagoon, a great egret was a straight forward find as it flew back and forth across the marsh.


Pausing for a while in the sunshine sheltered from the wind while watching the scene before me felt great - it's good to be in the moment and just enjoy nature.


The final stop was en route home via Paxton Pits again but the southern series of lakes where the majority of the punters hang out.  It was reasonably busy and the sun had continued to shine for much of the day.

There were hundreds of hirundines here battling the cool breeze.  Swallow hanging off telegraph wires and sand martin whizzing by overhead.  It was brilliant to see so many here and again quite surprising as this appeared to be a recent influx of them.



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