Breckland Birder

Breckland Birder
Crossbill in Breckland, Norfolk Photo by Paul Newport

Friday, 22 April 2016

Hockham, Norfolk

Hockham, Norfolk 22/04/16
1 Little Grebe
1 Snipe
3 Lapwing (pair + intruder seen off)
6+ Grey Heron (birds seen carrying nesting material)
1 Sparrowhawk
Stock Dove (pair)
Wood Pigeon
2 Great Spotted Woodpecker
Green Woodpecker
Greylag Goose
Canada Goose
c.10 Swallows
Mistle Thrush
Song Thrush
Chiffchaff widespread
Blackcap several heard
1 Garden Warbler - first of year
1 Sedge Warbler
Goldcrest many singing
Treecreeper 4 or 5 localities (including pair nest building)
2 Reed Buntings (males)
Blue Tit
Great Tit
Long-tailed Tit

A very grey morning with low cloud greeted my arrival at Hockham Forest.  Visibility was good but light was poor throughout this visit.
As soon as I was out of the car, Blackcap, Goldcrest, and Song Thrush were amongst the songsters greeting my arrival.
I checked a number of habitats for sign of summer migrants, notably Cuckoo and Willow Warbler, however, no sign at this stage.  The recent run of northerlies had undoubtedly held up arrivals.  Despite this, Chiffchaffs were numerous and there was a few Blackcaps singing to affirm their territories.
Treecreeper at Hockham 22/04/16

An initial check over the fen at dawn produced a  singing Sedge Warbler within reeds and Sallow scrub.
Relocating to another part of the fen, I found a pair of Treecreepers flying back and forth to an old Alder, I decided to stop and watch and remained for an hour watching these delightful little birds carrying nesting materials into a crack in the tree.  Nesting materials comprised moss, fine grasses, and wool.
Also in this area, my first Garden Warbler of the year was singing in a thick clump of Bramble scrub.
Having spent a rewarding hour watching the Treecreepers I then made my way back to my original position where at least 10 Swallows were hunting low over the fen.  The Sedge Warbler was still in fine voice.
Also noted here was Little Grebe (calling), 1 Snipe, a soaring Sparrowhawk, Stock Dove (pair).

I decided to have a cycle ride early afternoon.  I checked a former small Pine plantation (felled a few years ago), the clearing has now been taken over by low lying scrub, here, a Willow Warbler was heard in fine voice.

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