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Friday, 2 March 2018

'Beast from the East' brings avian visitors in from the cold

On Friday 2nd March, I was walking out from the Library over to the main Hospital building at 10.10am and I was delighted to see a Woodcock heading east over the Hospital building. I was especially pleased as I though I had lost my chance to see any at Fallowfields with the recent 85% scrub/ tree clearance. Unbeknown to me but I was informed by jenny, that my plan had worked and the apples I had put out in the garden had attracted 2 visiting Fieldfares into the garden (only our 2nd & 3rd garden records after I had seen one briefly during a similar cold spell 5 years ago). So we were now members of the rapidly expanding garden Fieldfare bird club, I just want to see and photograph them myself, I have to yet a good shot of a Fieldfare. I had replenished all the feeders and put out all the food I had as we were being inundated with birds during this Siberian blast. After work, I dashed down to Oulton Broad looking from the Wheery I could immediately see the excellent male Red- breasted Merganser, asleep amongst the Gulls (mostly Black- headed c200) just off the Wherry but I searched in vain both here and at the Dead end, I didn't see any Smew, although the light was fading fast and it was snow too this made viewing difficult. Back home I was replenished the feeders and putting out more apples in the garden at about 8.30pm, when an excellent Woodcock flew north east right over the garden and barely 10 foot above my head, thrilling and good to see the remaining scrubby/ tree area of Fallowfields is still delivering the goods!

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