SPRING IS HERE!

Sand Martin, River Ribble at Ribchester

SEVEN SAND MARTINS AND A SINGING CHIFFCHAFF were the highlights of this weekend's walks along the riverbank and are a sign that spring has finally arrived. Pied Wagtails seem to be back in the breeding areas and a couple of flyover Meadow Pipits were another sign that birds are on the move north again. A pair of curlews has taken up residence in their usual fields and there are five pairs of lapwings around the village. Despite the BBC Weather forecasting a 97% chance of rain from 1000 today (it still hasn't started yet as I write at 1300) it remained dry this morning long enough for another 40+ species walk around the doorstep patch. It is interesting as I do more walks this year that the count is usually around 40, ranging between 37 and 45. I try to keep more or less to the same route but I did wander much further north than usual yesterday. Common Moorhen was new for the year and Little Grebe made another appearance today while my first two nuthatches in Ribchester came within a day of each other. The Ribchester year list now stands at 62, which makes me wonder what might be possible? You can see the total on Ebird here in bar chart form, another great visual feature of their recording site.