It wasn't long before we had our first of 6 raptor species today KESTREL closely followed by MARSH HARRIER. Just after seeing the Marsh Harrier we heard the first of 2 GRASSHOPPER WARBLERS. Everything was happening quite quickly, a quick stop at the first view point and it wasn't long before we were listening to a Golden Oriole, the two Petes had never seen one but had heard them before, it sounded like the bird was heading a long the long thin strip of poplars to our left, we took the path along the edge of this strip and I managed to pick up the male GOLDEN ORIOLE in flight, about 40ft up, it flew right passed us over the view point and landed in full view, albeit briefly, in some dead branches at the top of a Poplar!!! Brilliant, so we decided to head home!?
After deciding that now we were here we might as well have more of a look round we continued. I always enjoy Lakenheath and try to get at least one trip a year in. We soon added BUZZARD, BEARDED TITS, 2 BITTERNS, a couple of HOBBIES and countless CUCKOOS and MARSH HARRIERS, by the time we left at 10.30am we had made a note of 55 species.
|Four Spotted Chaser|
Weeting is so close to Lakenheath and on our way to Titchwell, it made sense to drop in to see how the Stone Curlews were doing, unfortunately our timing was a bit out and a coach load had just started queuing to get in the hide! Since our last visit, the reserve has opened up an area of woodland to the public on the opposite side of the road to the hides, it didn't look too far on the map. 2hrs later, the circuit was complete! not without a few birds being added to the growing day list several though. TREE PIPITS sang and one displayed well, then a second new bird for both Petes was a WOODLARK also singing and displaying, a little late but a very welcome sight, it then sat in full view singing until it was time we moved on.Eventually back at the hides, now empty, it was great to see 2 STONE CURLEWS with a chick not far out in their favoured field.
Next stop was just outside Burnham Market, looking for raptors. There were loads of gulls over the fields including a couple of MEDITERRANEAN GULLS, we also managed another raptor Pete S picked up a RED KITE flying towards Burnham Market, a really nice surprise!
On to Titchwell and the hope of the maybe a Temminck's Stint, we were heading that way anyway. Pretty much the first bird we saw was a SPOONBILL which flew right passed us, for once camera at the ready, I fired off a few shots, once again I was on the wrong setting, will I ever get the hang of this, I wondered to myself!
|Black Headed Gull|
The scrape was full of waders, loads of BAR TAILED and BLACK TAILED GODWITS as well as AVOCET, KNOT, some excellent summer plumaged SPOTTED REDSHANKS and a single GREY PLOVER. The last stop was the sea and a couple of GANNETS headed east as did a single LITTLE TERN. There was time just see one last BITTERN as it flew towards the Fen Hide and dropped into the reeds. Unfortunately the reported Temminck's Stint had gone but there was plenty to see!
|Shelduck with young|
A total of 100 species exactly was more than I expected, to keep the numbers round we also saw 10 butterfly species a Muntjac, Common Lizard and a couple of moths not forgetting a the Four Spotted Chasers Emperor Dragonfly and I think a Variable Damselfly. Back home by 9.30pm, I gave the moths at Sissinghurst a miss this this morning. (it might be worth clicking on a couple of the images).