Saturday, 28 January 2012

Whitlingham in January

Wednesday was my last day off of my short break so i headed down to Whitlingham. I sent the whole morning walking around scanning the Great Broad in detail hoping that maybe the Fudge Duck remained. I can confirm that is definitely gone, but my first trip to Whitlingham CP this year did turn up a surprisingly large list 59 species.
Walking Trowse Water Meadows, before walking along Whitlingham Lane my 2012 Whitlingham list soon started to take shape, with lots of common bird soon on the list. It was still early and it was nice to see 4+ Song Thrush all singing, but he best bird from the meadows was a Kingfisher perched up close by than then whizzed off down stream. Whitlingham Lane was alive with small birds, a Goldcrest was with a tit flock by the cottages and 2 Mistle Thrush a bird I've missed of late where on the grazing meadow. The Little Broad held most of the duck species and a male Sparrowhawk flew straight over my head on the main track. By Little Broad Car park i caught up with the annual Siskin flock and nearby 2 rather lonely Redpoll, i soon picked up the remaining common waterfoul despite a misty haze hanging over the Great Broad. Wandering down to one of the fishing platforms to scan for the non-existent fudge duck i Water Rail ran out of some rushes before quickly returning. I sent ages at the screen still hoping to find the fudge duck, unsurprisingly i failed but did turn up 1 possibly 2 Yellow-legged Gull and a Snipe was also in the island margins. The river back was surprisingly quite except for a Cetti's Warbler calling, by the flooded section of path the said Cetti's was unusually sitting out in the relative open. A Buzzard was then seen flying over Whitlingham Woods, before i walked the South shore, again looking for the Fudge Duck. On reaching the Flint Barn i was sure the Fudge Duck had gone but had enjoyed my morning stroll. The best bird of the day was yet to come. Walking back i spotted a new 'life patch' bird with a Little Egret preening itself on a flooded section of Trowse Water Meadows.

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