A Thursday off work and a chance to bird - so, that'll be grey skies, rain and no birds then.
Actually it was an OK morning. Certainly it was grey, wet and windy, but not too seriously so. And certainly there wasn't the excitement of last Sunday morning - although the Hawfinches are still around (up to five apparently) I chose not to spend too long looking for them.
Instead I did a quick circuit of Draycote (in so far as one can do a quick five mile circuit), and found a few Goosander, a couple of Goldeneye, 120 or more Golden Plover flying overhead, and then up to 100 Lapwing.
At Toft Shallows I stopped at the hide for the briefest digiscoping session (too dull for serious photography, but here's a picture of a Robin anyway). And then I headed off to Napton Reservoir, a new location for me, but one which came to my attention last week when a pair of Bearded Tits were found there. The reservoir is very close to my house, so I took the opportunity to pop by. It's a good looking spot, with a reasonable amount of deep open water, mature hedging and farmland all around, plus a fabulously large reedbed at the back (hence the beardies I suppose).
No sign of much today (the high wind will have kept any Bearded Tits hunkered down low in the reeds) but I imagine I will be a fairly frequent visitor here from now on. But the highlight of the day was in a neighbour's garden - as I stared out into the gathering rain and gloom, a female Kestrel (young, I think) flew on to a nearby fence with a tiny vole in her claws. After sitting for a while she stuffed the vole between a fence and fencepost, presumably for later consumption, before flying off to make the most of the last few hours of daylight.