Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Water Rails, Woodcock and Kingfishers

On Tuesday 22nd before work Laura dropped me off in Drayton so that i could walk back along Marriotts Way and the River Wensum. I would have gone to Whitlingham but the route to and from was leathel with compacted ice.

Not far along the old railway line i spent 15minutes watching a Barn Owl hunting over the marshy area along with a Kestrel and Woodcock feeding along the hedge line. 2 Fieldfare also flew over with a single Redwing. There seemed to be lots of Great Tit and Long-tailed Tit along the path. I was surprised to see 4 Little Grebe on the river, but i was nearly in Cossesty before seeing any number of birds. A stream that ran under the old rail line had a Grey Wagtail hiding under it, a Kingfisher whizzed by and a Goldcrest was with a LT Tit flock.

Detouring from the railway line to follow the river Wensum near Dereham Road, i found Otter tracks in the snow, 2 more Little Grebe, a Woodcock, Snipe, a Water Rail and another Kingfisher. By the city dump 2 further Kingerfisher were on the river and more surprisingly a Water Rail was feeding in a dirty ditch close to the path. The scrub opposite the Wensum park held a large flock of finches and tits including 2 Brambling and 2 Coal Tit. The area also gave up a 3rd Water Rail and my first Great Spotted Woodpecker of the year.

I also found this rather strange 'upside down' fungus which i can't identify growin on the underside of an oak branch. Any help with the ID would be helpful.

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