Sunday, 17 April 2011

Spring Update

Haven't really been out that much and when I have been out haven't got around to writing things up, so here goes with a whistle stop update!

02/04/11 - Headed out with Gary and his dad to Landguard in Suffolk to look for the Short-toes Treecreeper, which we duly found, also of note were 2 Black Redstart, Firecrest and my first Chiffchaff of the year. From here we moved onto Upper Hollesey Common, where after finding the right site we viewed a Great Grey Shrike near the military base. A brief stop at Lowestoft failed to turn up the Iceland Gull that has been present all winter, be we did see the large numbers of Kittiwake that have returned to nest.

09/04/11 - A visit to a complaining customer had me visiting South Norfolk to put right the wrongs of a delivery driver, and adding a few year tick on the drive. A House Martin was seen in New Buckenham, a Grey Partridge tried to land on the bonnet near Kenninghall and a Turtle Dove was seen on wires not far from Banham.

11/04/11 - A late afternoon walk around Marston Marshes a site I've not visited in a while gave me a single Swallow, and a whole host of warblers, Cetti's Warbler, Reed Warbler, Willow Warbler, Blackcap and Chiffchaff, but the best bird of the evening was a male Hawfinch which was in the ''island' of trees by the river before flying towards the Pheasant pens.

12/04/11 - The previous day being sunny would have been nice at Strumpshaw RSPB, but this day was cool and breezy, not ideal for migrant hunting. Sand Martin, House Martin and Swallow hawked on the pools along with 4+ Marsh Harrier. The riverside bushes held large numbers of Blackcap singing as loud as ever, as well as a Cetti's Warbler and many often elusive Sedge Warbler. A Willow Warbler sang in the open as we approached the Fen Hide, where we views a Ferruginous duck of unknown origin, but it showed no sign of any leg rings. Walking back via the woods we go close views of Marsh Tit and another Willow Warbler.

17/04/11 - An afternoon trip to Thorpe Station Marsh added many bird to my Whitlingham Yearlist as i haven't visited the area much this year. Pausing by the cattle pen i soon had seen 3+ Little Ringed Plover as well as the resident Stock Dove flock and a distant Buzzard flying over Thorpe St Andrews. I then walked along the river back scanning back across to the spit i picked up most of the resident ducks, as well as a single Snipe and late staying female Goldeneye. 2 Whitethroat were near the bird screen and a Little Gull was in the air then later seen on the shingle. Back by the railways and reed bed i picked up Sedge, Reed and Cetti's Warbler as well as Chiffchaff and Blackcap in the railways side trees. By the foobridge i heard a Grasshopper Warbler so sat down for a while hoping to hear the bird again and locate it, something i never did. While waiting however i spotted what i initially though was the Buzzard again heading high and east over Thorpe St Andrews but closer inspection reveled the tell-tail features of a Red Kite, a very welcome patch tick.

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