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Showing posts from December, 2013

Ending the year on the patch

A look back at some Christmas birding, and whilst there were no late additions to the year list some excellent Winter birding was enjoyed as thoughts turned to 2014.
Debs and I spent the afternoon in Surlingham on Christmas Eve, beginning at Church Marsh. 2 Curlew over doubled the patch record (!) and even treated us to a their mournful call. Also smashing the record for number seen on any one visit was the Marsh Tit, again 2 birds at either end of the reserve. I can remember when I saw my first Marshy here, and I am pleased to report they are getting easier! Expected residents were Treecreeper, Bullfinch (heard) Great-crested Grebe (2) and a hopefully-resident female Marsh Harrier.
We then moved onto Wheatfen for a walk through Surlingham Wood. Again, I heard the Nuthatch near the cottage and a few Redpoll sp and Siskin were typical winter visitors.

Yesterday I made an early start at Church Marsh, and feeling a bit rough this was my only stop in the end. Again, I had a Marsh Tit not …

And what of Surlingham?

With the utter devastation on the coast wreaked by the storm surge earlier in the week, I was anticipating some potentially harmful flooding at Surlingham Church Marsh having seen Ben's pictures of a very wet Strumpshaw. However, despite some standing water on the north of the reserve and signs that the river had overflown in one or two usual spots, the impact looked akin to that of a heavy storm so hopefully not too much saline crap has seeped into the marshes. On the reserve were 2 Kingfisher, 2 Goldcrest, 2+ Bullfinch, 1 Linnet, 3 Snipe and a few Teal.
Over at Claxton Marshes, 3 Marsh Harrier enjoyed the breeze but the real prize was across the river: 30 Taiga Bean Geese! Glad to have that zoom function on the scope.
Not much doing at Langley Dyke bar a Kestrel and 100's of Pinks somewhere up high, so I headed to some stubble and set aside near Surlingham. A flock of 100+ Linnet was notable, and Greenfinch, Chaffinch and Winter Thrushes were all recorded on similar habitat.