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Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Monday 25th March - Exclusive Birding day

25th March 2013 

Today was an exclusive days birding for a group of 3 persons.  The weather still unseasonally very cold, we spent much of the morning hopping from one location to another with short sorties to look for birds. We started the day with a visit to a harbour area & there was good views of Bar & Black-tailed Godwit including 1 "limosa & 7 Icelandica"  Curlew, Ringed Plover, Dunlin, Brent Geese & other wildfowl also a smart pair of Red-breasted Merganser flew by. We then headed off to search some nearby farmland & were rewarded with lovely close up views of Brown Hare, 20+ Yellowhammer, c20 Corn Bunting, c30 Linnet plus 4-5 Brambling amongst the flock. 

We then searched the lanes nearby & soon we were having excellent views of 2 Marsh Harriers hunting & witnessed one catching a rat! We searched a another harbour area & had more close up views of shorebirds, before heading on to Titchwell, where we lunched.

After lunch we headed out on to the reserve, we were treated to some good views of several smart Brambling, shortly followed by real close up views of Water Rail. Out on the lagoons, it was as cold as any day this winter, an arctic cutting wind - we headed for the refuge of the hides! A real feature in the last week has been the massive numbers of gulls & this was evident here as well, with several thousand on the lagoon. We picked out Pintail, some superb drakes close to the hide, then the Long-tailed Duck flew in, shortly followed by a really smart drake Garganey! Probably wishing it had left it's migration a week or two later!! Ruff, Snipe, Curlew,  Dunlin, Bar & Black-tailed Godwit & Spotted redshank were all scoped & lovely views too. The Marsh harriers were up briefly - then it was time to work through the gulls - lots of 'em!

There was at least 1500 Gulls, mainly Black-headed & Commons, plus Herring, Great & Lesser black-backs amongst the masses we picked out a minimum of 5 Mediterranean Gulls & 1 Yellow-legged Gull!

The day was nicely rounded off on the drive back with 3 hunting Barn Owls!

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