Sunday 11 October 2009

More Teal than you could shake a stick at

Had a wander south from Horsey Gap yesterday arvo. Lots of Brents and Wigeon passing west offshore. Two or three Wheatears were at the foot of the dunes, whilst a few Swallows and Redwings went over, adding to the ones in the garden earlier.
No sign of the Yellow-browed Warbler reported earlier, sadly. Checked the Goldie flock near Fleggborough, but nowt doing. Lots of pinks around today generally.

Today, Sunday, did the WeBS count with Reg and John at Hickling from the boat. Not a lot doing, though a second winter Med Gull flew over, followed by a first winter on Swim Coots. Highlights from the two hides were over 2.5K Teal, probably more than I have ever seen in one place before. Pretty amazing; I would have liked to have gone through them all carefully, but we had to get on with the count. Other notable birds, were c20 Ruff, 3 Dunlin, several Snipe, 1 Ringo and the usual Bearded Tits and Marsh Harriers.

On to Horsey where after refuelling with a bacon butty, we went north for a change towards Waxham. The habitat looks impressive, with a variety of dune slacks, scrubby patches and short grass fields. We shortly arrived at a caravan park, which may be at the south end of Waxham. This had a lot of activity and looked great for a Tawny Pipit or something. Within a few seconds Reg landed the bird of the day, with a Shore Lark scuttling about in the dirt. A really stonking bird. I texted a couple of local birders and it turned out it was the first in this area for a while, so it caused a mini-twitch. Carried on doing the scrub as we went, but without success. A few Redpoll sp. went over and a Siskin or two, but all the Y-brows and Radde's eluded us. But we were happy with Shore Lark; beats the usual Wheatears...

In the evening, Willow and me pottered down to the river at Buckenham Marshes. A white blob on a distant gate was presumably a Barn Owl, but with the scope it metamorphosised into a large rather white-breasted Peregrine. It sat there for fifteen minutes, before heading east like a rocket. I didn't see what it went after. A little later three Marsh Harriers came in from the east, and went off down the valley towards Strumpshaw, presumably to roost. A decent flock of Lapwings and gulls were on the scrape, which seems to be filling back up. Sadly, I could not find a third Med for the day.

No comments: