I managed to grab an hour at Linacre this morning (6am to 7am) and was rewarded with my first Chiffchaff of the year. When I arrived, it was quite grey, overcast and the wind was blowing, but by the end of the walk I had recorded one bird singing by the Rangers' Base. Last year, the first bird was reported on the 19th (see here), so today's bird was pretty much spot on.
As well as the Chiffchaff, I was also lucky enough to see a pair of the Little Owls in the "breeding tree", and a great count of 5 Brown Hares that were "boxing" in the field by the main entrance. Lots of the resident woodland birds were singing and Great-spotted Woodpeckers were drumming.
A quick walk around all 3 reservoirs produced the following birds; Mallard (34), Tufted Duck (20), Moorhen (10), Coot (11), Mandarin (5; 3 males and 2 females), Grey Wagtail (heard) and Great-crested Grebe (4; 2 pairs, 1 on middle reservoir and 1 on the top reservoir). Frogspawn was noted in the top reservoir for the first time this year.
Year List update: