Long-tailed Tit in Spurrell’s Wood – not perhaps as showy as the white-headed race seen recently in Hungary, but pretty all the same
Apart from Cley NWT on Monday, birding opportunities have been a bit thin since the beginning of the month. Jane was away at the weekend so I was without motorised transport. I did manage a long walk around the parish and down to Sustead Common on Sunday – the best bird was a superb but distant Red Kite, found whilst scanning the newly harvested beet field for interesting gulls, between the village and Stone Cross. There were none! Monday’s highlights were a passing Rough-legged Buzzard, a 1cy Caspian Gull on Simmond’s Scrape and my first Water Pipit of the winter. Tuesday was spent at Sustead Common watching the creation of a filter reed-bed and an artificial ‘back-water’ off the Gur Beck. Together, they form a new, significantly extended, water feature which will be beneficial to biodiversity and improved water quality. See ‘Water Works’ on the Felbeck Trust website for more details and photos. Despite this rather flat period I’ve managed excellent views of two Woodcock in the past 36 hours. Yesterday morning I was returning from visiting the NT guys at The Woodyard. We’d been chain-sawing some timber by the entrance and just as I left the yard, a Woodcock was on the grass verge by the gate briefly before flying towards Stone Cottage garden. This afternoon I had to return to Sustead Common to do a couple of tidy-up jobs. I’d just reached the far end of Spurrell’s Wood when I disturbed a roosting bird, which flew up right in front of me.
iPhone photo of the Cley Caspian Gull