Saturday, October 11, 2014

'Steppe' Grey Shrike

So I saw this confiding little chappy.  The 'STEPPE' GREY SHRIKE showed stupidly well on a still grey morning in Burnham Norton.  What a charming bird this was, flighty and extremely obliging, it was shrikingly active chasing insects while displaying its black and white wing coverts while it darted off treetop perches onto the muddy deck.  Still couldn't get a decent picture but great to experience the character and behaviour of another rare shrike.

Also on site was a family party of eight Bearded Tit of which a male sat up on a reed 'pinging' away imploring me to take a photo.  Of course I failed to get my camera ready in time.

Pink-Footed Goose flocks were witnessed numbering around 70 in two groups as they called loudly over the marshes.  An evocative sound of winter.  A lone Swallow flew through in haste keen to catch up with peers already well advanced in southerly migration.

From here, the plan to head down to Minsmere for the Little Crake hit a snag.  The bird which had been seen over the past ten days or so failed to appear despite a five hour vigil staring at a dubious area of mud and swaying reeds that appeared apologetic in my statuesque efforts to connect with this elusive bird.  Feel a little unlucky it didn't show particularly as it had been seen that very morning,  But that's the way birding goes sometimes.  Watching three Marsh Harrier in a pre-roost display over the vast reedbed was a lovely sight in the fading light, but I left a little disappointed.

I thought back to the Shrike this morning, and all was well again.







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