Great Grey Shrike perched distantly in a Hawthorn bush
Great Grey Shrike hovering before flying off into the distance
The shrikes larder, I suspect this is a Robin
View across the heath to Buckherd Bottom, this is an extensive area of heathland. The shrike flew from this position to just beyond the middle ridge visible in the left of the photograph
New Forest Ponies
I decided to head back to the car as the time was pushing on, I cut through Kings Garden and Milkham Inclosure birding as I went, it was fairly quite but with many of the common birds now in territorial song, a sign of an approaching spring. I watched a Great-spotted Woodpecker feeding in a Scot's Pine often clinging to the outer limbs and investigating the needle clusters. A Raven passed overhead and Siskin called from the trees.
With a couple of spare minutes I decided to pull into the carpark at Eyeworth Pond to try to get some shots of Marsh Tit, this is a good area for the species as the public put down seed and they allow close approach but other than some fleeting glimpses they were not performing today. The Mandarin Duck showed well, with 11 birds present in the only unfrozen area of water on the pond. I watched the feeders for a while and then had a sudden feeling of being a bit of a dude watching plastic ducks and Blue Tits - it was time to head home.
Mandarin Ducks on ice
Blue Tit on a lichen and moss covered Oak