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Saturday, 25 January 2014

Ibis and Sibes at Oulton Marshes

A look down Oulton Marshes on saturday 25th January from 10.30am revealed little initially but a good scan of the reeds for some 30 minutes and willow scrub just behind and slightly left of the viewing platform eventually revealed first one then 2 suddenly materialised as if from nowhere, they were the 2 excellent Siberian Chiff- Chaffs, they moved through the lower margins of the Willow Scrub, with one working itself to the top whilst another worked its way too the base and was seen in full view here at the base showing well for several minutes. Very grey looking birds without a hint of olive or green in the plumage. They disappeared as quickly as they had appeared and one was seen ten minutes later for a few seconds only. Great to finally see these birds especially as I had probably seen one the previous weekend but not enough to conclusively ID it and a personal first on my old patch. Meanwhile on the marshes, I couldn't initially see the Glossy Ibis but it was seen half way out with some Wigeon, and I counted 239 Wigeon in total. The Glossy Ibis flew lot closer and fed a while before the Wigeon it was accompanying took flight and the Ibis flew to the back of the marshes again. By the fence line a Pipit flew out and I checked this and it proved to be a Meadow Pipit it showed well in the grass just beyond the fence line. Whilst walking back a Grey Heron walked right across the middle of a field. Checking the avenue of alders, as the sun came out a big group of birds included Long- tailed Tits, Goldfinches, Tits including 1 Coal Tit and then on the corner I spotted first 3 and later 5 Lesser Redpoll feeding on the Alder seeds at the very top of the Alder trees. walking further down the avenue, a Treecreeper spiralled around the trunk of a tree. A look in Corton Woods in the afternoon failed to reveal the Nuthatch or Firecrests, a Great- spotted Woodpecker seen at the northern end but bumping into regular correspondent Paul W and Paul & Jane in the north of the woods, a fine Woodcock suddenly got up at about 2.30pm and flew past us and north west past the woods and the north facing gardens. A minute later Andrew E joined us and it was good to get all the latest news and catch up with a fine group of birders.

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