I made my first visit of the winter to Middleton Moor last night. Plenty of Starlings but they all flew straight in to the reed bed without even a suggestion of a murmuration. There were both Peregrine and Sparrowhawk on the hunt which sometimes causes them to fly around more, but not last night. Very difficult to estimate the number of birds, last night I was thinking it was around 15,000 but I went back this morning to watch them leave the roost and the numbers seemed much higher. I saw a Sparrowhawk take one bird at first light but no sign of the Peregrine this morning. There was a Water Rail squealing in the reed bed last night.