We've had a few cold starts and maybe a touch of frost earlier this month, but this morning's hard frost was the first of the winter. Generally it's been warmer than average over the past few weeks but with a cold front moving in now, I'd expect the birds to really start picking up on the feeders. Numbers of goldfinches have dropped since last month's blog post as expected, with many heading further south for the winter. Coal tits are still plentiful however, more so than great tits but not as many as blue tits. The marsh tit is popping in regularly and long-tailed tits are beginning to visit more frequently.
At the start of the month we had a surprise in the form of a little owl roosting in the oak tree in the car park. It stayed for a couple of days and is probably still in the area, having heard it occasionally since around the church. When roosting, they are very difficult to locate unless they move or call. Fortunately it was doing both as it was getting some grief from the smaller birds, but once it had settled down it was very difficult to find once you took your eyes off it!