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Friday, 22 March 2013

Heralds of Spring?

I drove to Hamilton Road, viewing Hamilton Dock today (Friday 22nd March), and I immediately saw 2 excellent Sandwich Terns flying over Hamilton Dock and heading right for me! Indeed they flew right over my head and over the circular gas turbine at Ness Point and out of sight. One of my earliest records of this species and certainly my earliest at Lowestoft, they were a delight to see and obviously also new for the year. Although the bitter wintry weather, they must have felt totally out of place in the bitter conditions. Strong easterly winds were causing the waves to crash against the sea defence and even reach the raised walkways at Ness Point. I had a brief look from here dodging the spray from the waves and was pleased to eventually count 9 Purple Sandpipers, some of them very hardy creatures, 4 (2 pairs) were asleep on the rocks on the right hand edge of the finger that juts out from the most easterly point. The other 5 were busying feeding either on the rocks or the flat seaweed encrusted finger itself providing them with plenty of invertebrate food. The wind was icy cold and after fifteen minutes I was satisfied i had counted all birds present I left.

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