'Bumbarrel' is an old name for the Long-tailed Tit, everyone's favourite garden bird. And the reason they're called that is for the shape of their nest. It's almost spherical, with a little hole at the front, and made from a special weave of moss, lichen, spiders' webs and feathers.
A days birdwatching starting at Great Braxted where I failed to find any Hawfinches. At Abberton Reservoir the sun was shining but it was still cold on the Layer Breton causeway, mind you even in summer the causeway is a cold place to be. First birds seen were three Bewick's Swan, they were slightly obscured and sleeping behind an island. They did show better later in the day though. Amongst the flock of Greylag Geese were three White-fronted Geese. The flock was at the back of the western side of the causeway and soon flew to feed out of sight in the fields beyond.
There were around 50 Mute Swans and they would regularly fly from the reservoir to nearby fields and I managed to snap these two.
Other birds seen were three Smew a drake and two redheads, Marsh Harrier, Buzzard, Goosander and Goldeneye. On the reserve at least a dozen Skylarks were making the most of the sunshine and singing.