Once back from the walk I prepared for my morning of searching for migrants along the Watton Brook Valley, specifically, the Little Cressingham and Bodney areas of The Brecks.
Setting off prior to 0600 and with a temperature of 16 degrees celsius, I reached my destination and started my walk. By the afternoon the temperature reached 30 degrees celsius.
|Impaled Beetle at Bodney, Norfolk 22/08/15|
From this point on a search started for the bird responsible for impaling the Beetle, undoubtedly a Red-backed Shrike, although Woodchat Shrike should not be discounted given the patch record from July 1995.
Looking more closely at the Beetle, there was a small indentation on the upper wing casing, this I think could have been where the Shrike had held the Beetle whilst securing its prey onto the barb.
My first search of the area lasted some 4 hours, I checked all fences, ditches, bushy hedgerows, and also staked (no pun intended) out the impaled Beetle for some time in a hope the bird would return to its larder. Despite this search I did not locate a Shrike, sadly another visit a few hours later, lasting some 2 hours, did not reveal the bird.
To conclude, why has evidence of a Shrike been seen again, and almost to the week when evidence was seen two years ago. The first thought is a migrant Shrike, however, given ample habitat for this species to breed in, could it be an unpaired bird hoping for a mate to pass his/her way. Food for thought.