I made my first monitoring visit of the new year year this morning and found that the impressive numbers of birds that had built up during December were still present. The Lapwing flocks seemed more settled than on most recent visits, so I was able to make an accurate count with an impressive 1409 present thus chalking up another record count for this species on the farm. Although the water levels on some fields remain a little higher than we'd ideally like, waders are clearly finding the conditions to their liking as Field 8383 hosted four Dunlin, two Knot and singletons of Redshank and Snipe. So far this winter I have been perplexed by the absence of Snipe on the farm despite the apparently highly suitable conditions, so it was nice to find one at last. Hopefully more will join it before too long. The appearance of a Redshank is also most welcome as it is another species we hope will benefit from the conservation measures being implemented on the farm. Wigeon numbers have declined since my last visit with only 25 present, whilst 264 Teal were on the Old Irrigation Pond. Good numbers of gulls continue to roost and bathe around the site with 330 Common, 52 Herring and ca 80 Black-headed noted. Other species seen included Common Buzzard, Kestrel, 16 Stock Dove and ca 120 Greylag Geese. All in all an encouraging start to the new year.