Breckland Birder

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

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Thompson Water, Norfolk. A good day for scarce migrants.

My day started at 0430 with a 4 mile dog walk from the beautiful church at Merton, taking in Thompson (Griston road and Low Common Lane) before returning along Crows Lane, Merton, and back to the church.
This area of my patch is dominated by mature deciduous and mixed woodland habitat.  Many Blackcaps were heard in song all along the route within wooded habitats and a single Garden Warbler was singing on Low Common.  Whitethroats were beginning to stir and Goldcrest was also heard in song.
For some time I had heard a Cuckoo calling, then, as I was walking along Low Common Lane, I saw the bird flying between roadside Oaks along the lane before flying off towards Low Common.
Common species heard included Treecreeper and singing Nuthatch.

Thompson Water 0730-1045
Bright sunny conditions greeted my arrival at this beautiful site and even early on, within sun-traps in wooded areas, the sun felt quite warm.  I noticed however that cloud was moving quite quickly from the south-west.
Turtle Dove at Thompson Water 14/05/14
The reedbeds and woodlands around Thompson Water was alive with bird-song.  A good variety of summer visitors were present along with some scarcities.

1 Grey Heron
2 Cormorant
3 Common Terns
2 HOBBY
1 Cuckoo
1 TURTLE DOVE
Wood Pigeons
Great Spotted Woodpecker (pair)
Blackcaps
2 Garden Warbler
Reed Warblers
Spotted Flycatcher (pair) Thompson Water 14/05/14
Sedge Warbler
3+ Cetti's Warbler
Chiffchaff
3 Willow Warblers
2 SPOTTED FLYCATCHER
Goldcrest (several singing males)
Coal Tit
Great Tit
Siskin (pair)
Reed Bunting

The best viewing of Thompson Water faces east, therefore, this morning the bright sunny conditions did not assist with obtaining good photographs of the Hobbies over the water.
Moving round to the far south-east corner of the water I could hear Reed, Sedge, and Cetti's Warblers, all singing in the reeds and dense waterside scrub.  Whilst there, I heard what is for me one of the quintessential sounds of a warm spring day, a calling Turtle Dove. The soft purring of this sadly very scarce migrant was quite close to me; I eventually found the bird calling in the uppermost branches of a dead tree.  It was from this perch that the Turtle Dove performed its display flight.
I then walked along a small section of the Peddars Way which runs east to west along the southern boundary of the water.  I soon heard a familiar call, a loud strident "zeet", this call belonged to another scarce migrant, a Spotted Flycatcher (2) which I soon located in mature deciduous woodland.  I noticed there was plenty of Ivy Creepers around many of thr trees, a favoured nest site for Spotted Flycatcher, and whilst watching the bird, it appeared to be prospecting for a nest site within some Ivy.
Also along the Peddars Way several Goldcrests were singing, this included a pair seen together, the male occasionally flared his beautiful Orange crown stripe.
Back to the viewing area by the fishing platforms, a very close Cetti's Warbler frequently gave bursts of its explosive song, but as ususal, despite its close proximity all I saw was a very brief movement within Sallow scrub.

No comments:

Post a Comment