We reached Yarner Wood not long past 10.00: our first visit this year and a wonderful sense of anticipation.
Although quite grey down at the car park, it was warm in the hide (nothing much to see – just a pair of Blue Tits exploring one of the nesting boxes ) and as we climbed the path, sun burning off the cloud and the sky turned blue. The woodland is still bare -branched, so it is easy to spot what there is, or isn’t, but it is filled with bird song: all the usual suspects (Robin, Wren, Blackbird, Blue Tit) and also Chiffchaff, Nuthatches, a Goldcrest, the drumming of one Woodpecker across the valley and another up the hill behind us, and a Raven seeing off a Buzzard.
Add to this Bumblebees on the bilberry, the occasional Peacock butterfly, and Wood ants warmed by the sun and busy.
It was a perfect Sunday morning – and then not one but two male Pied Flycatchers: the first by Box 46, and the second a little further on, engaging in some territorial argy-bargy with a Nuthatch. Last year Pied Flycatchers were first seen in Yarner on 7 April, and we didn’t see them until 21 April (when I posted The boys are back). They are early this year.
It may only be March, but for us Pied Flycatchers are one of the first signs that summer is really on its way.