I went off to Cox's Meadow in Cheltenham this morning in the hope of bagging the Lesser Spotted Woodpecker. I arrived on the scene at 7.30am, but only had until 8.30am - after which I would have to get to work near Montpellier.
The bottom line is I didn't see it; didn't even hear it drumming. I heard a Great Spotted Woodpecker drumming briefly, but that's no great shakes.
Some reasonable birds popped up during the hour to keep me amused in the cold:
Jay (2) - my first of the year. It always takes me too long to see a Jay.
Plenty of Robins, Woodpigeons, Common Gulls, Black-headed Gulls, Blue Tits, Great Tits, Chaffinches, Crows and Jackdaws.
One small group of Long-tailed Tits, one male Blackcap, one Coal Tit, a few Redwings and one Mistle Thrush.
Best of all was a Kingfisher along the small river (I'm told it's the Chelt). I caught a flash of Kingfisher blue as I made my way along the river from the Old Bath Road and then watched it peel out of sight. Not a great view, but enough for a year tick!
105 birds now.