Breckland Birder

Breckland Birder
Crossbill in Breckland, Norfolk Photo by Paul Newport

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Discovering new areas.

My work as a carer sees me driving along some very tight, winding lanes in the Wymondham, Hethersett, Barnham Broom, and Hingham areas of Norfolk.  Within these areas are some beautiful tucked away villages, some with the quintessential village pond, some with rivers and streams which later form major waterways in Norfolk.
Many of these areas will be explored at length during my days off (if I can tear myself away from my beloved Breckland), however, during breaks from work there are many a layby, churchyards, and waterways etc. to park up by and explore. 
This morning I took a break about a mile or so from the village of Barnham Broom.  This area is mostly rolling arable with scattered woodland and to the north hidden in the valley is the River Yare.  A large field of maize to the immediate north saw a couple of Swallows skimming just above the crop, whilst a short while later, several Hirundines were seen flying close to the canopy of a wood to my south-west.  Also seen here was a pair of Red Kites soaring quite low and adjusting their tails and wings when flying into the fresh wind.
There is a particularly large Elder tree in Barnham Broom which I will be keeping an eye on in the coming months for passage Warblers, but this morning, I did hear a couple of Chiffchaffs in that area which may indicate some early movement.

Stow Bedon, Norfolk
Back on more familiar territory this afternoon for a walk along Mere Road.  My intention was to check for passage waders, however, a brief visit to suitable habitat did not show anything on this occasion.
The lane did hold some Whitethroats in the roadside hedgerows, these will probably be local birds, however, as this month progresses, the numbers of this species will swell as migrants pass through and stop at various staging posts to feed and rest.   
Also seen along Mere Road was one Great Spotted Woodpecker, Yellowhammer, Stock Dove, and one, possibly 2, calling Little Owls.

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