Surlingham Saturday afternoon.
Managed to tick off one of my target birds for the year a little earlier than expected; a flyover Little Egret, which I waved towards the marsh but eventually it was lost to sight, probably landing at Wheatfen. Across at Wood's End, a number of Fieldfare were feeding amongst a mixed group of Greylags, Magpies and Crows, an odd assortment. A closer inspection revealed at least 2 Redwing, new for the year!
Whilst the scrub it still quiet, save for a couple of Blue Tits, the lagoon finally gave me something to shout about. A pair of Shelduck were presumably checking out some potential breeding sites, and I approached with caution. The problem with the open-fronted bus shelter hide is that it is not really a hide at all, and unsuprisingly the birds saw me, quacked a bit, and then flew off towards Wheatfen. However, this was also a new bird for my reserve list! Further round the track, a Grey Heron was new for the year list and a few Wigeon and Teal are still holed in up the large back garden.
A trip back to see the folks allowed me a chance to see the female Ferruginous Duck at Bosmere Lake, Needham Market. I had stupidly written off females as crap after seeing a stonking male at Barton last winter; on close inspection this was actually one smart duck. Lovely round brown head, beady eye and white backside. If I kept a 'home with the folks' list, this would be a good bird to have on it.
Driving home I made what has become an annual stop at farmland near Great Moulton, managed a flock of at least 7 Bullfinch. Following on from the crap theme mentioned earlier, I went a bit Chris Packham over this well placed turd: