Breckland Birder

Breckland Birder
Crossbill in Breckland, Norfolk Photo by Paul Newport

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Little Cressingham (Great Cressingham Road)

A sunny and quite warm day, especially in sheltered areas, however, the wing continues from a Northerly quarter which gives a call edge to temperatures.
1530-1630 I walked from 'The Arms' to the Watton Brook Valley along the Great Cressingham road, and back.  A brief check of the Watton Brook Valley produced a pair of Pied Wagtails, a distant single Mistle Thrush giving long hops on grazing, a singing Reed Bunting east of the bridge in dense herbage, and a singing Whitethroat briefly.
Spotted Flycatcher at Little Cressingham 10/06/15
Walking back towards 'The Arms' it was clear that there was activity along the woodland/roadside edge at Hopton Farm.  Clearly, this warm, sunny, sheltered side of the wood was attractive to birds.
A single Spotted Flycatcher flew from the roadside hedge into pines where its conspicuous white underparts proved no problem for quickly relocating this bird.  A noticeable feature of this species is just seen in this photograph, the broad base to that slender bill, which presumably assists the bird in catching insect prey when snapping shut its bill during 'flycatching' sallies.
Spotted Flycatchers are true long-distant migrants with birds from Britain being recorded as far south as South Africa.
Also present along the sheltered side of the wood was a pair of Chaffinches (with young present), a singing male Blackcap, a number of Coal Tits searching the pine needles for spiders etc.
Along the roadside verge a single Painted Lady Butterfly was seen...a good year so far for this migratory species.

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