Saturday, August 6, 2016

Minsmere and a Honey Buzzard

At long last.  It's only taken 24 years to see my first UK Honey Buzzard.  We returned back to Walberswick to the Westwood Lodge viewpoint, but today I felt positive that the bird would show.

Almost on cue at around 3.20pm, the HB was seen flying reasonably distantly being mobbed by a Hobby before flying left along the tree-line.  I appreciate that there is generally a degree of ID confusion between this and it's more ubiquitous cousin, but when you see it, it really is a different beast altogether.

Having lost it to view, the bird then reappeared much closer soaring with a Marsh Harrier before drifting off again.

Also on site was a Woodlark and a Red Kite.

Then it was onto Minsmere for a gentle stroll round the reserve where to the chagrin of many visiting birders, the Swamphen had disappeared overnight.  Typical of rare birds to do a bunk on a Friday night and I feel the pain of all the visiting birders hoping to connect with it.

From the North Wall, a pair of Stone Curlew were actively feeding a single young bird.

The skies were clear, and the warm sun coupled with a warm breeze made for a stunning afternoon.

There were plenty of common waders on the east scrape, with Black-tailed Godwit present in good numbers, accompanied by the Avocet, and around 15 Dunlin.  Also observed on site were seven Spotted Redshank, four Ruff, Green Sandpiper, two Common Sandpiper, Ringed Plover, three Little Ringed Plover.  At least 30 Little Gull settled on the scrape, many of which were seen flying offshore later in the evening.

Along the eastern shoreline, two returning juvenile Whinchat and a single young Wheatear were present.






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