We spent an hour counting the birds in the garden for the NABU winter survey this morning and got 11 species. It was very busy. There were three bullfinches and we also saw three hawfinches on the road near the hornbeams.
It snowed for most of the day today, but this was what they call 'Graupel' here - a soft hail.
Yesterday, we spent some time sorting out some IDs and classifications on the website. Dr. Dietz, a local expert who counts the bats in the valley regularly, managed to identify the bat we'd photographed on one of our window-shutters back in April 2013 as a Daubenton's bat.
While classifying the bird species, I thought I'd re-check the Northern Wheatear ID I'd made from a photo in April this year. It looked wrong, so I looked again at the photos I had and have now confirmed that this was, in fact, a Whinchat. This is a really nice species to record - it is classed as "Threatened With Extinction" in this area. The photo I've included here is more diagnostic than the one currently shown on the species list.