Sunday, 16 November 2014

Every cloud a grey lining

Whilst the weather may have been dull and murky of late there was plenty to celebrate in grey.  The nest box team found this grey phalarope on Tuesday; thanks to Roy Lyon for these shots.
It was assumed disappeared (but likely here all along as so miniscule) until relocated by Lee Johnson on Friday night (along with a 3rd Caspian gull of the year) and has shown on D res all weekend - thanks to Martin Hodges for these shots (more on his blog):
Generally sticking to the walls it seems particularly interested in a couple of gull carcasses.  Also of interest in recent days too has been up to four scaup last Sunday with one remaining today.  3 red crested pochard were still present on the 10th, with four whooper swans the latest through on the 6th, and a pintail visited O res last week.  A peak of 4 med gulls since the last posting on D res on the 2nd. 

Watton NR saw an uncommon visitor in the form of a knot on the 11th, and Michael Flowers and his group had the second brambling of the year on the 14th.  Otherwise perhaps most notable has been a huge influx of water rails recently - 8 on south marsh west last weekend, with a further 3 heard on North Marsh on Friday and at least two more on the lagoons.  Thanks to Bruce Pillinger for this shot:
A jack snipe was present on South Marsh West today.  Grey Heron has also been about as per this collection by Andy Marshall:
Steve Brimble captured these images of the ability of grey heron to turn its hand to anything which comes close enough - in this case an apparent short tailed vole:
Still on the go despite the last posting saying they were on the wain are the kingfishers - Andy Marshall:
Otter showed four separate times last Sunday - as usual best off on North Marsh - Steve Brimble:
And Maurice Dowson:
Unfortunately Maurice also snapped this shady character at Hempholme Lock - the 6th American mink of 2014 so the worst spate in some time:
Another more balanced predator - Sparrowhawk by Steve Brimble:
And Bruce Pillinger:
Hen harrier reported yesterday and merlin today at the northern site with two barn owl.  Goldcrest keeping out the way - Andy Marshall:
And finding that a difficulty; Albino / Leucistic pheasant by Steve Hines: