Angela and myself had a lovely couple of days in Liverpool. The Anfield stadium tour on the Friday was fascinating (I now know why Liverpool FC are still waiting on a Premiership crown), the city centre has been rejuvenated as a result of being named the 'city of culture' in 2008, and we even managed to see 3 Shelduck heading west while we took a ferry trip on the Mersey. Sadly the football team had a disaster on Saturday as they were humbled 2-1 by the lowly Wigan Athletic. Not nice to hear the boos echo around the stadium but singing 'You''ll Never Walk Alone' in the Anfield Road end will always be a highlight for us both. Sunday's drive back to Kent was brightened by numerous Common Buzzards and a second Red Kite of the week circling over the M1.
All safely home, I paid Hothfield Heathlands (Common) KWT a couple of visits on Monday (26th), with the parents in the morning, and Angela in the afternoon. The target bird was Lesser-spotted Woodpecker, having seen a male here in spring of 2011. Soon after leaving the car park a different drumming could be heard alongside the more common Great-spotted sounds, and I located a smart male Lesser-Spotted Woodpecker announcing his presence (no calls - just the drumming). A second bird (not sexed) briefly interacted with the male in flight but could not be relocated. Other species noted included: c60 Redwing, 4 species of Tit, Chiffchaffs, 4-5 Nuthatch territories, several Treecreepers, 3 pairs of Jay, 2 males and a female Yellowhammer, a Woodcock flushed by a road, a pair of Common Buzzard and a flyover Lesser Redpoll. At Hothfield Waterfall Lake we noted Jay, Kestrel, a pair of Teal, and the highlights - 2 pairs of Mandarin. Nuthatch, Skylark and Chiffchaff were all singing.
Back in the afternoon with Angela but no luck on the LSW front. A pair of Stock Doves was a day addition. Nice to see all three species of Woodpecker plus Nuthatch and Treecreeper at the same site.