Scope, bins, camera, flask prepared, hat and gloves, off I jolly well go for a winter mornings birding at Gwents premier inland venue Llandegfedd Reservoir. New access arrangements mean a key to North Gate car park takes pride of place on my key ring rubbing shoulders with my Tesco Clubcard barcode fob. Shock! horror! on arrival no access possible, the chunky lock that should have been removed as per notice at 9am was still in place. Never mind I'm old enough to remember birding at Llandegfedd as a teenager in the 1970s when bailiffs were lurking behind every stand of reedmace and that having ones collar felt was as tickible as a goldeneye or red necked grebe.So onto Ponthir Reservoir until recently not even a twinkle in the eye of Gwents discernible birders. However, easy access makes for easy wildfowl counting with tufties, coot, a female goosander resplendent in santa hat and great crested grebe the order of the day. Snow forecast for tomorrow!