Saturday, 22 February 2014
Parrot Crossbills (& Crossbill) at Waveney Forest
This afternoon Saturday 22nd February, I parked at the end of the track from Fritton village walked down to Forest Lodge I didn't see very much so I walked across the clearing towards the carpark by the pylons and the log piles and saw a group of birders comprising Andrew E, Rob Wil, Ricky F, Paul & Jane F & OFB. Amazingly they were watching some very close Parrot Crossbills and Crossbills all perched up in a very close larch. At the very top was a male Common Crossbill and another male Common Crossbill nearby, these were brick red in plumage colour with smaller bills and slightly smaller slimmer bodies than the rest of Parrot Crossbills. In contrast the "Parrots" looked more puffed up, with thicker bills greyer less vivid plumage and larger bills. A pale female Parrot Crossbill perched well down in the Larch and showed well, whilst several male Parrot Crossbills were near the top. Occasionally, some would fly to drink water from puddle on the muddy ground below, several male flew to the tops of the Pines and fed on the Pines. I estimated I saw 8 Parrot Crossbills in total 6 males and 2 females. With the tally of Common Crossbills the 2 males. A little later on at the mound, after a pit stop the Decoy pub for a well earned Coffee and Chips, we saw the excellent Rough- legged Buzzard perched on a gate, it later flew back to a further fence post. Whilst, a closer Barn Owl hunted over to the right. A very distant Short- eared Owl patrolling the back margins of the fields was well picked out by Andrew, it was later mobbed by a crow and flew up into the air for a while.