It really makes a difference to be able to take them against a dark background.
Went out again on Monday as the weather looked good. Thought I would have a first look at Westdean Woods and Staple Ash Farm as there had been reports of a number of Hawfinches in the area. There was also the promise of the Little Owl in its usual tree.
I didn't have much luck. There are an awful lot of trees to search when you have no idea what the "usual tree" looks like. Nor were there any signs of the Hawfinches. I had a walk around but there are keep out signs everywhere and with a shoot going on somewhere in the woods it was not the peaceful countryside I was looking for.
I moved on to another new site for me, Ambersham Common. This was much more to my liking. Nice open heathland, space to roam, and plenty to see. Not huge numbers of birds but good photo opportunities. A couple of Stonechats were posing nicely on top of the miniature conifers.
There was also a fleeting and distant glimpse of a Dartford Warbler, a life tick for me. Perhaps not the show stopper male I was hoping for but I was still well pleased.
Returned home and on the way managed to see the Goosander in Petworth Park as the sun was setting. Got a record shot but its not worth showing here.