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Saturday, 3 April 2010

2nd April

A day out at Minsmere today. Charlie Dobbs, Robert Williamson and myself were hoping that the Lesser Kestrel would reappear. Our first stop, however, was the Pallid Swift, it came so low we probably could have caught it with a butterfly net. It was very obliging. Also seen was a male Blackcap singing and we also heard a Sedge Warbler.
The only news on the Lesser Kestrel was negative. We walked around Westleton and Dunwich Heaths and saw a few Stonechats and Dartford Warblers, a Goldcrest also showed itself, not too many of these about at the moment.
On Minsmere reserve there were a lot of birds including Black Tailed Godwit, Avocet and 21 Mediterranean Gulls. Migrants were few and far between. We did see Red Fox in the reed beds. Marsh Harrier count was 17 for the day. The only Kestrel we saw was a fine male Eurasian.
Pallid Swift - Kessingland

Dartford Warbler - Dunwich Heath

Little Egret - Minsmere

Kestrel - Minsmere

31st March

A catch up day chasing the Pallid Swift. The exotic location was Kessingland sewerage works in the rain. The weather kept the bird hidden for a while but finally showed well and then another Alpine Swift appeared taking my total to 5 for this year, previously I have only seen 2 in the UK! The works held 15 White Wagtails and a very early female Redstart. A Swallow flew past. No pics today.

30th March

It's a no brainer today. Left very early for work so I could visit Westleton Heath. What a fantastic hour well spent. Star bird was obviously the male Lesser Kestrel, only the 16th recorded in the British Isles. Also on view was a Great Grey Shrike and a Stone Curlew. I had all 3 in the view finder at the same time. There were also a few Dartford Warblers and Woodlark close by.
On my way north to Great Yarmouth I passed through Lowestoft and saw 2 Alpine Swifts along the sea front. Unfortunately I missed the Pallid Swift which came on the pager later in the day.