Aylmerton Nature Diary

Thursday 12th March

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Oystercatcher, one of a pair in the parish

There was a female Siskin in the Ash tree at the bottom of The Street as I passed by yesterday afternoon – exact same spot as the previous day. Two Egyptian Geese were in their usual location in the field above the water meadow, along with a lone Oystercatcher – another ‘first’ since I started the blog. There have been a pair seen over the past couple of days so, fingers crossed, that they stay around. The usual variety of woodland species were busy by the screen and I did manage to see a pair of the newly arrived Mandarin, hiding in the dense cover at the head of the lake – this is the pair of the male with a deep blood-red bill. On the lake itself the three male Pochard are still present, as were over 40 Common Gull in the roost. A Lapwing was flying around over the rough grazing field – another promising sign and there was a distant Buzzard over towards Gresham. The mixed ‘finch flock’ was again feeding in the remains of the maize strip along School Lane – Chaffinch, Yellowhammer, Linnet & Skylark. Several small coveys of Red-legged Partridge were in the fields by Mill Lane as were a handful of Skylark and Meadow Pipit. At the reservoir there was another lone Oystercatcher and, from who knows where, three ornamental Mallard (I must look them up!). The Oystercatcher eventually took flight and circled overhead calling. On my way back down the Loke a tractor in the nearby field was attracting quite a following of gulls – but, alas, only Black-headed and Common on this occasion. There were also another pair of Lapwing feeding in the wake of the farm machinery.

Male Mandarin, Felbrigg Lake 

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More exotic wildfowl… possibly Khaki Campbells?

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