Breckland Birder

Breckland Birder
Crossbill in Breckland, Norfolk Photo by Paul Newport

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Little Cressingham (The Arms/Watton Brook Valley)

A mid afternoon walk to the Watton Brook Valley firstly produced a very brief of a large raptor, so brief that I did not identify it.  I made for open ground, however, the mystery bird was gone, despite this a very large and spectacular 2000+ Corvids (mostly Jackdaws and smaller numbers of Rooks) went airborne, perhaps 'put-up' by the raptor.
Having reached Watton Brook I checked the fences and herbage for migrants, none were seen, although several Swallows and House Martins skimmed over the fields and Brook for insect prey. The N wind blew moderate to occasionally fresh, perhaps the conditions had forced any migrants to cover.   The fence-posts held many Wood Pigeons.
On my walk back I checked sheltered area of hedgerows and woodlands for any movements, all I could muster was a single calling Chiffchaff and a calling Bullfinch.
Sloe Berries
Looking ahead towards the last week of September and into October, and in the right conditions, eyes and ears will be trained skyward as winter Thrushes arrive, possibly in their thousands from Scandinavia. 
Redwings, Blackbirds, Song Thrushes, and Fieldfares really do provide a spectacle to behold as the first light of dawn sees these birds possibly making first landfall since leaving Scandinavia the night before.
Thrushes will seek a variety of fruits to feed upon in the lanes and hedgerows, one of these fruits is that of Blackthorn, the beautiful Sloe.  This year has seen a bumper crop of these delightful fruits, these and other fruits will form a wonderful larder for hungry migrants.   


  1. Good to catch up again and see that your report for today includes two species which to you are common but virtually unheard of down here in southern Spain, namely Bullfinch (very,very rare) and Rook (never)!!!!

  2. Thank you Bob. I hope you are keeping very well. I often think where I would be if you hadn't helped me set up this blog. I am so grateful to you for this. You may not have Rook, but you have the stunning Hooded Crow....a rare winter visitor mainly to the coast, however, I did see one at Thompson Water on 24/10/93.