Leader: David Gibbons
Reporter: Jacquie Fenn
Species List: Seamus O’Dowd
It was a cold damp November morning when the group met at Denver Sluice hoping that the forecasted rain would keep at bay. We were greeted by Cormorants, Great Crested Grebes and a very obliging Kingfisher which was perching on a reed as we looked along the drain.
Moorhens, Tufted Duck and a friendly Wren made an appearance. As we crossed over the road to look over the fields we were delighted to see a small flock of Yellowhammers in the hawthorn along with Redwing and Redshanks on the flooded fields beyond the hedgerow.
Two very miserable Grey Herons stood hunched against the breeze on the flooded field and looking across the drain in the far distance was a Great White Egret with a Buzzard on a fence post.
We left the sluice and headed in a shower of rain towards Welney looking out for swans on the way. Both Whooper and Bewick Swans grazed the fields in reasonable numbers. Arriving at Welney we were welcomed by the inevitable House and Tree Sparrows as we headed upwards towards the coffee and lookout areas.
From the main hide we watched over a very flood lake with few swans but many duck the majority being Pochard. Pintails were seen in a few numbers along with Spotted Redshank, a large flock of Black-tailed Godwit, a few Ringed Plover, Ruff and Dunlin. Marsh Harriers flew over setting up large flocks of Lapwings.
At lunchtime back in the visitors centre we were blessed with good views of a low flying golden Barn Owl. From the back of the centre we looked out across the fields to catch glimpses of 5 Roe Deer and a large flock of Golden Plover. Just before leaving the group had great views of a Short-eared Owl from the viewing area by the cafe as it quartered Lady Fen.
Some members decided to go back towards the sluice to have a chance of the Bewicks again and others headed towards Methwold at the news of a Great Grey Shrike. Luckily the shrike was still showing well and after a trek to its favourite field we ended the day with good views of this smart bird.
Thanks to our leader David Gibbons who counted us in and out!
Great Crested Grebe
Great Grey Shrike
Great White Egret
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Please feel free to read through our reports from our monthly outdoor meetings.