short eared owl - Thorpe Marshes

short eared owl - Thorpe Marshes

Monday, 27 June 2011

Weekly round up.......

 Before i start with last weeks sightings i must mention last Sundays morning trip to Surlingham Marshes, where i meet up with Jim  ( who showed me around cracking little reserve with a rather mixed habitat. We had a good hour and half's birding which brought us a calling Cuckoo which happened to be in a tree directly above us (closest ive ever got to one) ,a flying  Little Egret, Marsh Harrier hunting, a Hobby darting through across us, a Garden Warbler singing and some nice views of 2x Grasshopper Warblers! All good birds but probably the best part of the morning for me ,(other then the good company obviously Jim!) was when i asked Jim if he still had the Little Owl in the tree that he had been mentioning on his blog recently? He informed me it hadn't been about of late but we would take a look today and see. Well your`ve guessed it..... it was there sitting out in view as if it was waiting for us.I was really chuffed as Ive only had flying views during the day , other views have always been in darkness so this was a treat as in fact the whole morning had been, Cheers Jim!
 Now back to the week just gone. I popped into UEA broad on my lunch break on Monday as Ive ignored this place for a while so i gave it 30 minutes .Well lots of young fledglings as you would expect- 2x Common Terns were over the main lake which was the first time ive seen em here along with  5x Blackcaps singing away, Mistle Thrush , 2x Song Thrushes, 2x Reed Buntings, 4x Common Whitethroats, 3x Sedge Warblers, 2x Reed Warblers (one of which was out in the open for quite some time which was nice rare treat) and  2x Chiffchaffs. As i left i scanned again at the lake and noticed a couple of Terrapins on a log, not sure where they had came from but looked beautiful in the sunshine. No camera or scope so i used my mobile (little bit dodgy but i think its good enough).

With regular visits to my father in laws house for weekend and mid- week dinners I've been taking time to record all bird activity down at Thorpe(station) Marshes as it's less then 5 minutes walk from his house. I've been trying my best to keep records up to date from beginning of year so here's what I saw Wednesday and Sunday !
 Wednesday gave me all the common stuff I expected (although still no Mistle Thrush yet) and a few new patch ticks. Before I get to them let's start with what I saw from the Bridge 2x Chiff chaffs, Gold Finches and 2x Whitethroats. In the bushes & reeds along the path heading to the cattle gates. 3 more Whitethroats , 4x Reed Buntings,2x Blackcaps, 2x Reed Warblers, 3x Sedge Warblers & 4x Cettis- 2 of which were heard from the usual bushes and 2 were seen going through a bush together ( always nice to see and first tine I've seen a pair together ) . From the cattle gate( concrete  platform area) looking out to the marsh itself was rather empty accept from 2x Stock Doves ( although probably more but high grass keeps em well hidden) and a single Pied Wagtail. As I walked round the far side of the lake I picked up more Sedge, Reed Warblers , Reed Buntings and then 2x Grey Herons flew across and dropped into the Marsh , this then put up the Stock Doves  , now around 8-10 and 2x Lapwings! I do love a good Lapwing in flight and I watched these two as they climbed fairly high up and headed off over towards Kirby Bredon. While walking around the other side I picked up yet more Warblers and decided to take a look at the Scrape .Only a single Pied Wagtail, which could easily has been the one from earlier.
Onto the water : 2x Great Crested Grebes, 4x Tufted Ducks and the Mute Swan family were still present. As I completed my circuit i was alerted to a noisy Crow, I looked up hoping for the Marsh Harrier which often passes over , but better still...a Common Buzzard ! A patch tick for me . I know that they probably pass over from time to time but I always seem to not have been there when they have! Any way as I passed the Mooring area I heard yet another call from the sky....2 x Common Terns flying along the river passed the New Cut.- another patch tick. On to Sundays session. Arrived at 2pm, blue sky and hot! Just as I approached the bridge , a female Sparrowhawk circled overhead and a Cettis was singing from bushes on train line. I had the same Warblers along the path as Wednesday although it wasn't as noisy as the hot weather probably keeping some in the shade( I know i needed it !) I approached the concrete pad and viewed the marsh - wow what a difference a few days makes, I counted 23x Lapwings , 4x Stock Doves and a Grey Heron! I've never had more then 3x Lapwings here so this flock were of much interest to me.Some were feeding and some laying down with the sun bringing out all of there colours of this cracking bird!

Stock Dove with the Lapwings
 I picked up two new patch ticks along the far side of the lake  too : a family of Pheasants  -2 adults and 5 young ones. They passed over the path and into the grass.As soon I passed them my next patch tick flew over me, 3x Linnets. I've heard them before, often flying away from me but finally got me eye on em. Also a nice family of Gold finches sat on the 'roofless' hide. Another bird that in the sunlight looked stunning.There were 5 in total along with a pair of Blackcaps and singing a Wren.

Gold Finch
 I scanned the lake to find the family if Mute Swans, 2x Great Crested Grebes, 8x Tufted Ducks and a Lesser Black Backed Gull. I scanned up along the river from the mooring area opposite the New Cut  to find 20 + Greylags & 4x Canadian Geese and 2x Great Crested Grebes all on the shaded bank.All in all a nice few hours in the sunshine .

Mute Swan,Canadian & Greylag Geese

 Happy Birding,

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