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Sunday, 12 April 2009

Ring Ouzel joy!


Easter Sunday saw me out and about after the morning rain, hoping to see migrants and as usual I started at the Lowestoft Oval cricket ground ever hopeful of finding a Ring Ouzel on there.
The first sweep of the pitch revealed little other than a group of 50 Wood Pigeon and 2 Pied Wagtails. Checking the Denes area already full of dogs and dog walkers I decided to recheck the Oval. Hearing and seeing 2 Willow Warbers singing away in the trees behind the Oval was a good start. I checked the Oval cricket ground again and this time there were 5 Pied Wagtails.
I scanned the Oval once again and was about to leave when I decided on one last look and immediately I spotted a female Ring Ouzel at the far east end of the Oval by the big white Cricket screen. Success at last, and how sweet it was, too!
The bird was female because it had brown and not jet black plumage and the lack of a lemon yellow bill of a male, but it was a smart, fine bird nonetheless.
Enjoying it for a few minutes, I then decided to ring Rob & Andrew who I knew must be around nearby.
Funnily enough, when I spoke to Andrew he said he was just walking along the Eastern or should that be Easton (pun intended!!) edge of the Oval and as he was so close to the bird the ringing tone of his mobile may well have spooked the bird as we couldn't find it when I joined him.
Andrew then spotted it feeding on the grass by the Tennis Courts before it flew over to the Tennis Courts where it had a brief snooze on the rocky ridge dividing the courts. As close as it could get the rocky screes in upland Britain where it breeds.
More people were starting to arrive and we were all eventually treated to very close views of the fantastic bird feeding again close to the white cricket screen. The Ring Ouzel, or Mountain Blackbird as it is known fed really well tugging at several worms before eventually gulping them down.

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