I have become used to the battle between spring and winter, and not knowing what to expect next from the seasons. I have not been disappointed this year. We have had our usual winter visitors of Siskin and Brambling passing through, but yesterday we had a very special visitor, a Redpoll. Redpoll are small finches streaky brown with a very prominent red on the forehead, hence the name! These birds may be small, but are very mobile, and one ringed in Glen Clova in August was found in Kent in early November. They feed on small seeds, often on Birch or Alder, and just keep moving looking for new feeding sites. The birds breed in the North & West of the UK. Having flown south for the winter, they need to return to the breeding grounds in the early spring. More info and pictures is available on the RSPB web site
At the other end of the bird’s size spectrum, I have had two reports of a Sea Eagle over the Carse in the last few days. Fortunately the second person had a camera with them, and when you see a bird that looks all wing, it can only be one bird. With most birds the tail is about as long as the rest of the bird or with Long-Tailed Tits it is even longer. With the Sea Eagle the wing is long and broad, the head looking small and the tail about half the wing width, a very distinguishing profile. Again the RSPB web site has more information.