Breckland Birder

Breckland Birder
Water Rail at Thompson Water, Norfolk Photo by Paul Newport

Friday, 3 March 2017

Just where is that Cetti's Warbler

A couple of days ago I paid an early morning visit to Thompson Water and the surrounding Carr habitat.  It was a glorious morning with several species appearing to announce that spring is almost here with them affirming their territories with wonderful song.
Great Spotted Woodpecker at Thompson Water March 2017

I noticed that the damp woodland carr habitat held at least 8 singing male Goldcrests.  This diminutive bird has a piercing song which sounds cyclical in rendition "cedar-cedar-cedar-cedar-cedar-cedar" ending in a flourish of notes, is my best way of transcribing the song.   To make things complicated perhaps to the untrained ear, two or three Treecreepers sang their piercing song, a little similar to the Goldcrest.
Nuthatches were calling and at least 3 Great Spotted Woodpeckers were 'drumming'.
Tit species were well represented with Great and Blue Tits seen, along with their smaller cousin, the Coal Tit, of which three or more sang.  Marsh Tits were present in numbers, some six or so were seen, and song was heard, as well as the very loud, sneeze-like "pitchou" call.
Around the periphery of the water in reeds, sallow, and damp carr habitat, am expected Reed Bunting was heard singing and two or three female birds were seen.
A beautifully marked female Reed Bunting at Thompson, Norfolk March 2017
Two Cetti's Warblers gave their explosive song typically within cover, one of which was so close that it just had to be within sight without optics, but as seasoned birders know, this retiring, resident Warbler remained elusive, almost.  Cetti's Warblers inhabit thick, tangled habitat by the waters edge, this bird did in fact show, but only the rear end as it slipped between cover.  This bird continued to give occasional bursts of its song, a song to the untrained ear, is so loud for the small size of the bird.
About a month ago when visiting this site, I was fortunate enough to see a Cetti's Warbler creeping about within thick cover, a privileged observation indeed.

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