Saturday, 7 January 2012

Another Wild Goose Chase

Saturday January 7
The morning was spent doing the laundry - beautiful sunny winter day. Rather late, we worked out that this was our last 'free from commitments ' day until next Friday. Slow roast pork joint in the oven, we drove to Buckenham Marshes via the railway crossing. Strumpshaw car park was packed, that visit will have to wait.
We drove far enough down the track to Fisherman's car park to enable viewing of the marsh immediately south of the railway line. I struck lucky this time in finding the flock of Taiga Bean geese immediately, their orange legs gleaming in the sun. An assiduous scan found a lying down Whitefront which turned its head so that it was looking at me straight on. The amount of white on its forehead extending up towards the head made it look like a Coot's shield. Excellent, the Lesser Whitefronted Goose. It then got up and grazed, giving further views.
The marsh was full of birds, at one point the Golden Plover, Starlings and Lapwing rose in a huge and dense cloud. Not far off 10,000 I reckon. That total does not include the thousands of Wigeon and fewer, Teal, White-fronted and Pink-footed Geese present. I saw about 30 Ruff in all, scattered amongst the Plovers, a single Dunlin and added Barnacle and Canada Geese to the year list.
Disappointingly, no sign of a Peregrine, a single male Marsh Harrier was the only raptor. Pam didn't want to drive to the mill to-day so we didn't check for any neck- ringed Scandinavian Greylag which have wintered here for the last three years or so.
The usual Werthers as a thank you to the crossing attendant, over the years we've been served by many and none have turned one down.
The pork looks great.......

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