I came back to Penrith early than usual to try and sort my next years accommodation, which isn't going well. After sorting a few bits and pieces out I headed for Cliburn Moss, arriving at 14:30.
As parked up, and put my wellies on a tribe of Long Tailed Tit fed in the silver birch canopy above. I was taken North along the western edge of the reserve, as I entered the mature Scots Pine the need to stop and listen seem apparent, firstly from the silence I picked up the song of Goldcrests, quite a few, scanning the thick canopy above I found numerous birds feeding. Continuing North a Jay made a brief appearance, flying up off the track. Reaching the Northern-most edge of the reserve again I stopped to listen, I could hear the flack of Woodpigeons to the North, the sound of Jackdaws and Rooks to the North, as well Carrion Crow, but the most noise was coming from a presumed flock of Starling, chattering to the North. Naturally I headed north, though the gate off the reserve, up onto the disused railway, with the hawthorn hedgerow. Looking over the field, I could see a winter crop had been left, and large numbers of Woodpigeon, Jackdaw, Rook, and Starling were feeding. Lapwing were also present amongst the Starlings, 4 Fieldfare fed close to the hedgerow and a single Stock Dove fed amongst the Woodpigeon. As I re-entered the reserve a Great Spotted Woodpecker flew overhead.
The track now headed East, it leaves behind the Scots Pines for a small marshy meadow area, with a small pond, 6 Mallard, and 1 Drake Teal were flushed from the pond as I approached. I followed this track it began to head towards the houses, not wanting to walk this way, I went for a bit of wandering, and headed South along the reserve perimeter, which I'm pleased I did. Just as I re-entered the Scots Pine a couple of Woodpigeons flew out of the canopy above, and a scratching noise on the tree in front of me followed. A Red Squirrel was frozen against the orange trunk of a mature Scots Pine, heading downwards. It camouflaged in so well, with that beautiful orange colour it shares with the Scots Pine, if it had not made a sound I may of missed it. Retracing 2 or 3 steps another tree provided me with cover, as I sat down the Squirrel repositioned onto a horizontal branch, it sat, cleaned and scratched for about 5 minutes before it move upwards into the canopy.
Pheasant, Blue Tit, Great Tit, and Common Buzzard were heard throughout my wonder of the reserve.