If, twenty years ago I had claimed to have seen a buzzard, peregrine falcon and red kite during an afternoon stroll in Bushy park in spring, people would not have believed me, and rightly so!!

However, that is exactly what I did see one April day as the three named birds sailed over the park.

Nowadays, such sightings are quite commonplace because the three species nest around London and the home counties in increasing numbers.

When I was a boy, if I wished to see a buzzard then I had to wait until the summer holidays in wales where the bird is common, but over the past several decades it has become widespread.

In the nineteen sixties peregrine falcons were on the brink of extinction as pesticides leached throughout the food chain causing any eggs laid to be so soft shelled that they broke.

In the nineteen fifties there were only two or three pairs of red kites nesting in the wilds of central Wales but now, thanks to a nationwide re introduction programme their population has escalated and many can be seen especially along the M40 motorway corridor where feeding stations are in place.

So, all three species have made a remarkable comeback and grace our avian populations while many other species are in decline.

Another relative newcomer now seen frequently around London is the elegant little egret with pure white plumage, black legs and yellow feet.

Some now spend the winter in Morden Hall Park where this one was photographed in March.