With the twins starting nursery this week, I've taken the opportunities created to start getting out and looking at some of the areas I planned to guide in with my new guiding service Bird North East. Fairly quiet on the bird front, though my first birdsong of the year was a singing Marsh Tit and I did manage to drop back into the Hawfinch site on the way back to school in the afternoon and pick up two birds coming in from the east but flight views only. Interesting that these birds are also attracting the odd Durham birder to venture north with young twitcher Andrew Kinghorn plus one burning up his university grant to get to grips with the big finches.
Once rather nice find whilst out and about was three Otters cavorting along one of the rivers. My first sighting this year of this particular mammal.
This morning saw me at the coast and the first Fulmars of the year were picked out around the outfall pipe of Spital Burn, though no sign of the adult Iceland Gull that was reported here last week. Over 200 Wigeon back at an ice-free Bothal Pond finished the morning nicely with the sun highlighting the differences between the grey and rufous females quite nicely.