Aylmerton Nature Diary

Tuesday 20th December

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Female Pochard, in amongst the Gadwall flock

It was practically dark when I reached the lake, despite it being only 2.30 in the afternoon! There was the usual mixed Gadwall and Tufted flock on the lake, but in amongst them, three Wigeon – two males and a female and a female Pochard. The Coot was also still present. The Kingfisher moved gradually from bush to bush ahead of me until it got to the dam, when it flew back the length of the lake and disappeared amongst the Willows on the island. When I got to the outflow there was a Water Rail feeding out in the open. At the Woodyard, on my way home, a close Goldcrest proved nigh impossible to photograph in the gloom.

Earlier in the day I’d had a short ‘twitch’ to the other end of the county, on a wild goose chase (or not, as it turned out this time!) The wild geese in question were a splendid Red-breasted Goose and one of the smaller race of Canada Geese – Todd’s. On the way back I called in at Titchwell to add Ferruginous Duck to my Norfolk Year List.

Red-breasted Goose – I forgot to check my camera settings, and by the time I did the bird had decided to have a fly around! Photos of the Todd’s were completely unusable 

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Male Ferruginous Duck – it’s presence accompanied by the usual deliberations about it’s possible captive origins and/or the possibility of it being some sort of hybrid. It’s on my list!

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