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Sunday, 23 July 2017

Bits & Bobs

On Saturday 15th July at around 12.30pm a Red Kite flew west over the A12 just before the Wangford dual carriageway. On Saturday 22nd at 10.30am heard a Whimbrel fly over the garden (called 3X) but not seen. Red Admiral, Comma & Large White butteflies seen in the garden. Sunday 23rd a Hawker dragonfly seen fly over the garden, probably Brown.

Monday, 10 July 2017

Marvellous Minsmere

On Sunday 9th July, Walking down to the Bittern hide, a lady said one was showing and sure enough grabbing a seat in an almost packed hide next to Paul & Jane, I could see the Bittern skulking around the edge of the reeds. At one point it stealthily leaned forward and then I could only describe it as flopping into the water, it caught something and ran back into the cover of the reeds again. After around 45 mins of waiting as if on queue a shout went up at 10.30am and the fine Purple Heron flew east and went down in some reeds half way between this hide and the south hide in the distance. On the way back through the woods, we were shown some Badgers excrement, literally a big dollop! At the car park, we bumped in to Rob H & along the north wall initially after some careful searching we had seen 2 Six- belted Clearwings in flight by the Birds foot trefoil. But when Justin & Chris L came along with some pheromone lure. Our third attempt on the other side of the path (south side) Justin said he had one, a fine Six- belted Clearwing and it posed beautifully on the ground and the the cameras!

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Carlton Marshes evening visits

Mon 3rd July and Thursday 6th evening visits on Mon the Little Owl was perched on the post by the gate but flew as I drove down. Waiting at the first field. I eventually saw 1 Barn Owl fly across a minute after I had left the prime location so failed to get the pics. On Thursday I saw Rob H and Gavin. We had 3 Barn Owls hunting and the Little Owl was perched on the top of the wrecked building.

Monday, 3 July 2017

Abusive man along Breydon south wall & a fine male Red- backed Shrike

On Monday 26th June, I thought I was going to have a very pleasant walk in the evening down along Breydon south wall to look for a Red- backed Shrike around 2 miles down the path bordering the estuary by the Pumphouse. But I reckoned without an encounter with an extremely disturbed and volatile man (c40 years old short brown hair, brown shirt) walking 2 small dogs. One was white one was chestnut. He had driven his light blue car up a track just south of the farm and got out just ahead of me. He stopped regularly to tend to his dogs which were on a lead. I was following behind and both went wild, he requested I stop so he could tend to the dogs I waited and waited and waited. Five minutes later, I said it was best if I get past, so the dogs would calm down. I suggested he should keep better control of his dogs on a public footpath and what followed an appalling diatribe of the Anglo- Saxon invective and threatening and abusive language that no sane person should hear. He shouted at me at the top of his voice, threatening to "fXXXing do me in, break my legs, break my cameras and the camera lens, next time I see you down here I'll get you etc etc. I just carried on walking, I met 2 lady walkers a few minutes later and warned them of this extremely volatile and abusive man and this led to further abuse being shouted at me for another 5 minutes. I carried on walking and just before I got to birders and the bird, I was subjected to further levels of abuse for a further few minutes, by this individual, who was obviously turning back. I was very relieved to reach the safety of the birders, seeing Rene and other friends, they sympathised with me and certainly there was safety in numbers, thank goodness. I did not take any pics of this man or of his car, as evidence, because I feel it would have driven him over the edge and I could have come to serious harm, had I done so, I would have taken the evidence straight to the Police station at Great Yarmouth. I have never ever been subjected to such levels of vilification and abuse in East Anglia before. Be warned! The fine male Red- backed Shrike was seen on a distant fence, a fine male with immaculate plumage grey head, black mask chestnut brown pack and pink flush to the underparts. The Shrike perched on the wire by the third post from the end. It flew onto a bush by reeds further north before eventually flying onto a bush nearer the pumphousr. In a really close bush, a Reed warbler showed well briefly too.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Winterton delights

On Saturday 10th June, a visit to Winterton resulted in me seeing the an Emperor dragonfly flying over the Dunes. Muy main quest was easily seen literally sticking out like a sore thumb, a fine summer- plumaged White- winged Black Tern sat amongst the Little Tern colony. Several times it flew out to sea and flew back again. Meanwhile I watched Little terns fishing close in shore and saw 2 sat on the back. Really good to see Dave J, ex NLIS colleague. An excursion over to the Toad pools revealed Dave discovering a Smooth Newt by the side of the pool and I saw it clamber into weedy vegetation. Dave directed me over to the square fenced pool slightly NW of there inland and was delighted to see 2 Red- veined Darters, one resting on the sandy sides and 1 perching on the reeds. I also saw lots of Natterjack tadpoles too. As I was photographing the RV Darter on the reeds using my 500mm lens, a male Roe Deer literally walked past me barely 30 feet away, initially it was against the sun, but I froze and as walked up to a bramble bush, I waited till it walked behind this and I stealthily crept up to the bush where it was again 30 feet away in really good light and managed to get some nice shots before it slowly walked off southwards. Walking back 2 Yellowhammers seen also plus a Hairy Dragonfly.

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Orchids at Thelnathan Fen

On Wednesday 7th June, having a work trip to Fulbourn, I was able to call in at the SWT reserve of Thelnathan Fen (between Diss and Bury St. Edmonds) and arrived parking at the side of the reserve, Some botanists were here chatting. Walking along I could see lots of Orchids, Southern Marsh and Spotted and what I hope were Early Marsh Orchids by the path slightly further on and slightly past their best.

Monday, 5 June 2017

Emperor deceased

Sad to say I found a male Emperor Dragonfly freshly dead (it wasn't there first thing when I fed the garden fish in the other pond) on the edge of the lawn by the wildlife pond, at 1.30pm on Mon June 5th, it wasn't mauled at all seeming to indicate it wasn't taken by the cats. The worst sort of first record for the garden, I was hoping to see and photograph a live one in the garden. It was duly buried in the garden.