Worked at home today, got a phonecall at 1620 and as I stood to pick up the phone I noticed a flock of 15 Whooper Swans flying north over the garden. Amazingly this was a garden tick for me. Whooper Swans are frustrating as although I see them pretty much everyday of the winter at North Duffield Carrs, they don't seem to range far outside of their core feeding and roosting area and as I'm not on the regular flight path due to being on the 'wrong side' of the village I just don't get them. I've heard them flying over at night when I've been walking the dogs just along the road from the house and my neighbours have said they've seen them - usually when I've been at work so I knew it was just a matter of time before I finally connected!
These birds are likely migrants that have spent the winter further south, as 'our flock' (which probably is quite fluid with birds coming and going all the time) disappeared last week sometime.
Anyway, glad that ones out of the way... Think that brings me to 85.