Breckland Birder

Breckland Birder
Water Rail at Thompson Water, Norfolk Photo by Paul Newport

Friday, 24 May 2013

Great Cressingham

What a day....is this May...or the beginning of March. Persistent heavy rain throughout the whole morning giving way to frequent heavy showers in the afternoon...I suppose our weather gives us the green and pleasant land we see in such conditions.
A late afternoon dog walk around the roads and lanes within the Great Cressingham parish produced a few singing Whitethroats in the hedges and in adjacent fields the presence of several Lapwings indicated the likelihood of breeding.

Red Kite by Paul Newport
Walking along Priory Road, a large raptor was hanging in the air facing into the wind, my suspicions were confirmed when I saw that this was a Red Kite.  Even at range, this highly distinctive raptor is not likely to be confused with any other bird of prey species.  As the Red Kite drifted over a large field, a pair of Lapwings flew up to intercept it, their mobbing of the Kite eventually drove it away. The behaviour of these Lapwings again indicates they are breeding on this field.
Walking south along the Peddars Way back to the car, I could hear Stone Curlews literally just beyond the hedge, once I found a suitable gap, I saw a pair of Stone Curlews standing motionless between furrows close to a long flinty strip where it is likely that a nest is sited.
Despite the poor weather conditions, there is always much to see, however, let's hope that this wet, cold weather does not impact negatively upon ground nesting species like our Stone Curlews...this species has already had a rough ride in late March/early April when some Stone Curlews perished in the very cold conditions. 

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