Monday, 15 August 2011

Mink!

Mink are a bit of a guilty pleasure, like say Duran Duran. They are an invasive species (Mink, that is) and have been responsible for depleting native fish stocks, and have had a negative impact on Water Vole numbers. They should not be here. But, one could argue that is a very xenophobic attitude. Little Owls should not strictly be here, but I can't say I mind them. I had never seen a Mink in the wild until yesterday, and a part of me was pleased to see them. It goes without saying, that I will not articulate this pleasure when contacting the RSPB.
After a fruitless morning at Surlingham, Ricky and I went to Rockland Broad in the hope of an Osprey sighting. Walking the track that circumnavigates the broad, a crash in the reeds revealed the aforementioned Mink, one chasing another. Unaware of our presence, but unseen in the undergrowth by now, the pair engaged in some rather odd noises (courtship, play?) and then disappeared further into the thick vegetation.
The Broad itself held a few Great-crested Grebe, Tufted Duck and a resident Kingfisher. 2 Marsh Harrier drifted through, and both Common Buzzard and kestrel were seen behind the hide in the meadow. No Osprey, but going by recent form, there is a good chance of one or more hanging around the Rockland/Strumpshaw/Surlingham area until September. Now that would be a smashing bird for the patch list!
Debs and I went for a wander in the Broads that evening, and the sky was undoubtedly the best bit. Add in the sound of bugling Common Cranes, and you can only be in Norfolk.




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