Breckland Birder

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

Friday, 23 August 2013

Hockham Fen

Whilst walking the forest trails to Hockham Fen I met a few people on the way, all commented on the number of mosquitos in the area.  I must say that these little critters are particularly aggressive at this time of year and if like me you wear shorts all year round then you have to suffer the consequences.  It is only the female mosquito that feeds upon blood and without this they cannot produce their eggs.  The male mosquito feeds entirely upon nectar.
Hockham Fen appeared quiet when I visited, however, the mind wandered to what could actually be hidden within this fantastic site.  A Willow Warbler was heard briefly in song within woodland along the periphery of the site.  Both Chiffchaff and Blackcap were heard.  A single Kingfisher flashed past me and was later heard giving its piping whistle-like call in cover where it may have been tending to its young.
The woodland surrounds held calling Siskin.  Siskins are mostly winter visitors, however, this is a scarce breeder within Breckland, their numbers will swell, sometimes significantly, from September when migrants visit from Northern Europe.  Also seen was a couple of calling Crossbills.
Dragonfly species seen both over the Fen and in the surrounding pine forest included Ruddy Darter and Emperor.

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