Z. Near Swallow Pond
I am always going to get a low relative score in this tetrad. It is furthest from home and work and I will never spend as much time here as @Joe_dobinson who has set a new Swallow Pond Patch year record. Here NZ26 was so close to getting a genuine rarity as Purple Heron flew though one morning. Later in the year he also added 2 Marsh Harriers to the NZ26 total.
It would be easy to dwell on the birds that I did not see and the dog poo that I did, but it did furnish my only Yellow Wagtail and one of the two sites for Grasshopper Warbler. However, in a rare early morning foray across to the tetrad I did get my tetrad highlight and one of the highlights of the birding year. At close range of 4 metres I watch the display of a male Willow Warbler. It was early season and having sung from the top of an Alder the pair descended into a low Hawthorn Hedge. Here he continued to entertain her by standing up tall displaying his chest and under wings in his display of passion.
And the sight of Swallows swooping down to drink was impressive, until you realise that they were drinking from the black inky darkness of a pool of water in the manure heap. That can’t be good.
At the other end of the day while waiting to see owls the roost of Jackdaws was spectacular and deafening. They can just bee seen in this picture of teh Pit Heap
Species list 62.