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Saturday, 29 December 2012

Great Northern Diver at Hamilton Dock & no show (yet again!!) at Fritton

Switching on the phone, a tweet from Rob to say a GN Diver was at Hamilton Dock and within 15 minutes I was on site strolling along I saw Guy O, but could not see the Diver or the Shag for that matter. No sooner had Guy and his friend got in their car than the excellent Great Northern Diver reappeared swimming left from the jetty/ boat area at the back. I called back Guy, and the Diver then eventually swam into the north- eastern corner just a few metres from us and therefore showing extremely well at times, especially when people knelt down by the block it was happy to hunt close by, in front of an appreciative audience. It had a particular liking for Crabs and must have caught at least 7 or 8 during the two hour period of observation. It was joined by 2 Shag at one point, hunting not too far away too and I noted their characteristic jumping hunting dive on a variety of occasions. I was later joined by Ricky F, Jon E, Paul W, John H, Justin & his brother, Steve & Dot, Rene B and others. The bird would then swim back often to the far side before swimming back again and showing exceptionally well in the north- east corner. The bird frequently dived during the 120 minutes observation period hunting for food. At Fritton Woods mound, I saw Andrew E, Rob Wil, Paul & Jane F and Paul W again. Both the RLB (4th time I have dipped this bird) and GWE had just been seen but they failed to appear from 2pm to dusk. A Sparrowhawk flew east in over the wood and our heads! A Peregrine Falcon perched on a fence post out on the marshes was the only significant bird seen.

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