Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Far from Filey

On Tuesday we changed venue because of a very damp, windy forecast to the relatively sheltered Tophill Low.  We headed off to SME to try and locate the Snipe, but there was no sign of either species.  However, we went into the back-2-back hide facing SME & were nearly deafened when a Cetti's Warbler sang almost next to the hide.  A smallish brown bird was spotted moving about from time to time, but we didn't get a really clear view.  Later an even smaller brown bird was seen, but this proved to be a Wren.
All pics (c) 2013 Maggie Bruce
Whooper Swan

 Tufted Duck
The stilted hide provided Heron, Shoveler and Tufted Duck.  There was an immature Great Black Backed Gull, but I don't rate his chances of survival very high.  Last week there were at least 4 large gulls dead on this island.  Although the corpses of these had gone, there were 2 fresh bodies to take their place.  Presumably the local fox is hoovering up the dead birds. 
 Drake Eclipse Pintail [left of Mallard] & female Pintail [right]
From Watton Borrow pits the pair of eclipse Pintail were the best birds, although they can be very hard to pick out.  But there were still Wigeon, Gadwall, Teal, an immature Great Crested Grebe & plenty of Cormorants and the usual waterfowl species.
Canada Geese
 Friday Unmentionables

We popped into D reservoir, but apart from a Pochard, 2 female Goldeneyes, and another Great Crested Grebe there wasn't too much to see.  As we had plenty of free time we went to North Marsh.  On the way we were arrested by the sounds of a small flock of Goldcrests, and 2 of which showed nicely.  Coal Tits and Long-tailed Tits were heard in the same area, but not seen.  A Great spotted Woodpecker was heard briefly, but it took flight at our approach.

North Marsh was very quiet.  Pat spotted an immature Cormorant roosting in a Willow Tree, but we heard a Water Rail, and then for less than a second one was seen fluttering from one reedbed to another.  Unfortunately only myself, Barbara & John got on to this bird in time.

While I was typing this at lunch time a male Tawny Owl hooted near the old visitor centre.

A Whooper Swan dropped into Watton Borrow Pits and stayed long enough for all the afternoon people to observe it clearly. 

PS Chris Cox stayed at North Marsh for extra time this morning and into the afternoon.  He was rewarded with seeing the wake of a single Otter, and it continued to swim underwater, apparently even directly under the hide - sorry, no photos!

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