A couple of days ago I cleared a patch of vegetation from the pool on Hougham mill lane, Marston. One end is now viewable and it was encouraging to find the patch of mud that was visible crammed with waders the next evening. Nothing scarce, but 14 curlews, 5 snipe, 2 green sands and twenty lapwings. A further 120 lapwings were on the large grass field along Sand lane. I saw a cuckoo fly from one of the willows yesterday, a juv, I think- browny grey, rather than bluey grey.

Quiet again this morning, I bumped into Richard Laxton and we watched two red kites, distantly to the North.

This afternoon I had a ride out to Baston fen, a red-backed shrike had been seen there yesterday, but no report today. I didn’t really expect to find it, so wasn’t disappointed when I didn’t. The first bird seen when getting out of the car was a turtle dove. Nice. The place was swarming with dragonflies.

Driving on a little further to Tongue End, (great name eh?), I pulled in at Willow tree fen. Water rails were calling from the ditch and I glimpsed a couple of juveniles. The main scrapes were semi dried out but held 7 green sands, 10+ snipe, 2 little egrets and some lapwings.

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