Before I got into the park, I was aware of the bird song all around me - so much more than a couple of weeks ago. A few Long-tailed Tits darted through the shrubs.
Looking around as I headed toward the bridge and into the park, catkins were proclaiming the promise of spring!
As I stood on the bridge - listening to the sound of many Goldfinches, I started scanning the high tops of the trees; I was well rewarded with Redpolls, Siskins, Golfinches, Blue and Great Tits. The seed heads of the Alders (I think!), are now competing with catkins.
I like the "beigy" pinkness of seedhead.
Many of the older trees were showing signs of damage; no doubt recently broken branches suffered with the weight of the recent snow.
I walked through and started my stroll around the lake. I small flash of blue which alerted me to a kingfisher. I turned off and headed down the very muddy slippery bank to the edge of the River Mole - this is where I'd hoped the Kingfisher had stopped. I scanned along looking at likely perches and to my delight - there he was perched up. Far to far away for a picture, but at last I've seen it! And thanks to my Painshill fisherman friend who kindly showed me the likely spot to see it.
My next surprise was as I scanned the lake. Loads of tufties and, well they're a funny shape!
A male and female Goosander. Now this is a first in this location and a first in terms it's the closest I've ever seen Goosanders.
Of course they were on the far side, but the sun was behind me from where I stood and watched.
I was so engrossed watching this pair, that I hadn't realised there were many more of them further up the lake. A couple of males decided to join the pair.
Many Gadwall about (again not regulars there), and one took off while I was watching.
I wandered on listening to two Nuthatches one of which I saw flitting about. A great tit sat surveying the scene. As I stood there a Wren dashed across and disappeared through the bottom of the hedge.
Many more water fowl around now the water is once again open. Canada Geese and Greylag Geese there in numbers.
The Great-crested Grebe was about; it may be the youngster from last year. I added Coots, Mallards and a Grey Heron. A couple of robins also darted about happy to be near each other.
Time was getting on and I was getting hungry! I walked back and had one more look for the Kingsfisher, but not to see it this time.
But I did find a clump of Snowdrops - the first I've seen at Painshill this year.
Well I hadn't been there for long today, but I was well rewarded.
Oh yes - I then came down to earth with a trip to the supermarket - but at least I'll eat tonight.