A reasonably mild but rainy day saw myself and Pete Chapman venture out to look for some birds around Strumpshaw and Buckenham. Pete is fairly new to birding, so he was hoping for a few ticks (Les White-front for example)
Although we could not locate the Goose, which had moved to Cantley for the day, we had a great day with plenty of good 'padders' for the year
Started at Strumpshaw and one of the first birds I saw was a female Red C Pochard ... a great find I thought, until it started diving and showing off a big yellow plastic ring on its left leg! There seems to be a large number of escaped/released diving duck in this area. I have heard rumours of a shooting lake in Suffolk that releases large numbers of ducks, including Ferruginous and Marbled Ducks!
Things got better in fen hide when we scored a Bittern in flight and the usual Chinese Water Deer. A Kingfisher back in front of the reception screen was also a nice addition (especially as I only saw one last year in December!). A 'chattering' flock of 30+ Siskin was also nice
On to Buckenham and here we saw: 40+ Taiga Bean Geese, 100+ White fronts, Ruff, Peregrine, singing Cetti's etc etc
There were workmen on the railway line which may explain why all the geese moved on to Cantley, including the Les W Front ! which we did not catch up with.
The final stop was at Ludham where right on queue a pair of Whooper Swans flew straight over us and into a nearby field giving fantastic views. This is never a numerous bird in this area and it was surprising to see Whooper with not one Bewick's Swan around.
A great finish to a good morning's birding
Now just waiting to see what this cold spell brings to the county ... I am hoping to find an Iceland Gull in the next few weeks at least!