The first half an hour at Lakenheath was very quiet and felt almost wintry, overcast windy and not much more than 10 or 12 degrees! Things did gradually warm up both with birds and the weather. The first of 3 BITTERN flew up from the reeds as we approached west wood, this was closely followed by hearing a GRASSHOPPER WARBLER which flew up onto a reed and in full view for a minute or two, a new bird for my two companions! The view point at Joist Fen produced many MARSH HARRIER, BEARDED TIT, COMMON TERN, CUCKOO and two more BITTERN sightings one very close while my camera was still in it's bag!! A CRANE called from behind the river bank but remained unseen. No Golden Orioles sung and apparently they haven't been for a couple of weeks, maybe they have moved off-site, we'll try again next year no doubt.
|Marsh Harrier - Lakenheath|
At a site for Montagu's Harrier we managed only RED KITE and GREY PARTRIDGE, which wasn't to be sniffed at it was the first Grey Partridge I'd seen this year.
Finally to Titchwell and a very obliging WATER VOLE was initially too close to get a picture! A BARN OWL was extremely active in the now sunny and warm conditions. On the flood 2 summer plumaged RUFF stole the show for me but at least half a dozen LITTLE GULLS, 2 SPOTTED REDSHANK and good numbers of BLACK TAILED GODWIT and usual AVOCETS were keeping us entertained.
On the beach probably 1000 KNOT wheeled up and down, some in their red summer garb, 1 summer plumaged DUNLIN was with them and far out to sea a raft of maybe a couple of hundred COMMON SCOTER bobbed up and down. A total of 99 bird species were seen or heard and 7 Mammal species seen which is probably some sort of record for me in one day in the UK!
The following day we visited friends who took us to College Lake in the Tring area and I saw my first BEE ORCHIDS!
|Bee Orchid - College Lake|