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Sunday, 21 March 2010

Another Fantastic Day!



Another try for the Penduline Tits today at Island Minsmere, instantly produced goodies when I bumped into Neville L and he told me there was a Bittern showing well. In a very packed hide, I made my way to the right most side on the ground level and saw Dick W.  The Bittern was amazingly, feeding right in front of the hide, just a few feet away carefully walking about and feeding first on the left hand side on the water channel and then the right. Amazing views and the bird would walk slowly freeze and then stab the water and gulp a small fish down giving stunning views and I took around 300 pictures! I'll try post some pics later. This very confiding Bittern then flew off left and fed a little further back before it eventually flew off right.
Several Snipe were seen as well as 2 courting Great Crested Grebes on the mere & 2 calling Mediterranean Gulls heard overhead but only 1 seen, an adult.
Suddenly, the guy next to me in the hide yelled out that he had a Penduline Tit, it was noon and it was quite distant (to the right of the hide by some prominent reed mace just to the right and in front of a line of Poplar trees) but it was indeed one, a male Penduline Tit with black mask voraciously pecking at the reed mace and the white seeds were floating up in the air. it then moved down the reed mace and then up again before it flew off high to the left at 12.05pm.
The Jack Snipe was seen in a short iris laden area, where occasionally you could see it's head and then back as it bobbed up and down, a larger Snipe with much longer bill was close by for a good comparison.
Several Bearded Tits including 2 adults and 6 immature birds perched in reeds and 1 immature foraged at the very bottom of the reeds looking down from the hide. Several 3 female Marsh harriers quartered the reedbeds.

Driving up to Frostenden, what must have been a Chiff- Chaff flew in right front of the car and right.
My next plan was to look for the Red Kite which had been hanging around the Somerleyton area, but a message stating Andrew E had found a Goosander made me revise my plans and I ended taking the Lound road. Parking near Bunker's hill, I looked south over the water and immediately saw a female Redhead Goosander swimming low in the water and then diving and swimming towards me and thee area to the right. Roger C joined me as the female Goosander swam left and walking onto the shore line to preen (on the bank behind were 2 Oystercatchers) and look around for a while before having another swim around and than swimming far away.
A look around the Somerleyton & Herringfleet area for the Kite was initially unsuccessful but near Kitty's Farm entrance, I looked west and the excellent Red Kite was flying high in the sky over a large field at 4.30pm, it had no wing tags and flew around high up in the sky and then down and towards some trees where it disappeared from view.
A look at Corton MOD as the sun was setting revealed several flocks of Starlings c100 and c80 on the ground and flying north. Finally a Curlew and 2 Oystercatcher flew south over the sea.

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