The weather always plays it's part too. Being so exposed it is open to the elements, so going prepared for all extremes is a must, especially this time of year. It's easy to get caught out.
Proving fruitless on this occasion as we reached the building, we cut across back to the seawall
The viewing point looking onto the scrapes was eye watering thanks to the bitingly sharp easterly as it ruffled the shallow waters.
The tide was out but had begun it's slow return. Most of the waders and ducks were still out in the bay on the exposed silt grabbing the last morsels before they were covered once more, giving much needed respite to the worms and crustaceans from their incessant foraging.
Overwintering Wigeon like to graze on the grass.
This year they have been scarce here. Flooded fields not helping the matter as they prefer roosting on the ground as well as taking advantage of the bounty therein.
We made our way north then took the path inland and west towards the information hut that edges the pools and reed beds.
Thoughts of that rare male Garganey duck drove us eagerly to the lake once again. A few Teal, Canada Geese and Mallard were all we could pick out however.
I, on the other hand with knowledge and flippancy, headed further south to Hayling Island with the east and westerly points as destinations.
The easterly point was, in non meteorological terms known as 'blowing a hooley'. I could see the band of snow sweeping across the hills in the distance, so after a few minutes I gave up and headed to the relative shelter of the west side.
As I arrived, the blizzard began. I sat in the van overlooking the bay thinking of the fool I was slowly becoming. Maybe it wouldn't settle and I would be ok to travel home?
Thankfully it didn't, although one did wonder for quite a while.
As I drove north off the peninsular, the snow began to ease so I dropped into a favourite haunt on the oyster beds just before the bridge that links the island to the mainland.
Many gulls were around getting prepared for the incoming breeding season. None more so than the latest edition to the wildlife here, the Mediterranean Gull. Their distinctive grating ironic call brayed out distinctively before me.
Some settled on the sea. Others flew high above as they have a propensity to do.
We awoke the next morning to find another blanket of white before us. A good two to three inches had settled.
As we reached the front, a summer migrant, the Chiffchaff was desperately looking for some food and wondering if it had turned up in the wrong country no doubt!
Albeit it distance so as to not disturb it, it took quite a while to wash itself.
The usually indolent Buzzard I found partaking in it's usual pastime...