A balmy minus 4 today (if these aren't the perfect conditions to play "buck-naked snow angels", then I don't know what are), but no sign of the snow clearing, so I was surprised to find the garden feeders deserted when I got home to Dempsey Towers.
Looking up to the big sycamore the reason soon became obvious - a young Sprawk was preening and eyeing the bushes below for dinner.
Too good to resist a few attempts at digiscoping through the back window - even in the fading light.
Superb bird - the white blotches on the youngster's back only helping camouflage on a snowy, grey afternoon.
It didn't move much for ten minutes, until the Blackbirds and Woodpigeons returned to stripping my cotoneaster bush of berries.
This latter feeding behaviour is particularly irksome, as the shrub is clearly - and fruitlessly - labelled "Waxwings only".
Suddenly whoosh, the Sprawk was onto a female Blackbird in seconds, although the thrush managed to dive into the bottom of a hedge, evading capture by a feather's breadth.
Blackbird 1, Sprawk 0.
Once the accipter had gone, a few Chaffinches and a single Brambling appeared in the treetops again, but best of all two calling Tree Sparrows came through - only the second and third I've had at a Dempsey Towers.
Not much time for birds on the coast at present (they need to be left alone in these conditions) - although a few family groups of Whoopers have headed north, and displaced Skylarks, Fieldfares and Redwings have been calling overhead.
Eyes to the skies everyone, eyes to the skies...