1st of March 2012
WWT – Brandon Marsh.
Species seen 33.
A late afternoon visit arriving at 5pm with still reasonable daylight, saw the following notable sightings, Mediterranean Gull, Curlew, Goosander, Goldeneye, Great Crested Grebe, Pintail, Oystercatcher, Ringed Plover, Golden Plover, Snipe, Widgeon, Pochard and Shelduck.The main reason for today’s visit was to hopefully see some Barn Owls, as I’ve not seen any since October of last year. The weather was ideal for Owls, warm and still reasonably bright. While making my way to the Carlton hide, overhead in the trees was a flock of Long Tailed Tits making their usual noises along with a singing Robin and several Grey Squirrels.
Once seated in the hide an Owl was soon spotted, the unmistakable sight of a Short-eared Owl really wasn’t expected, as it was Barn Owls I was looking for. These birds are truly magnificent in flight with their bright yellow eyes and powerful leisurely wing beats. Then, within 20 minutes a Barn Owl appeared and quartered the reed beds, twice coming right in front of the hide. Everyone really enjoyed this brilliant half hour of “Owl-fest”. While leaving the reserve a Tawny Owl was also heard.
On a day when the first UK sighting of a Swallow was announced and Sand Martins yesterday, who knows what I’ll see the next time I visit Brandon Marsh?
Both these photographs were taken by local birder Paul Huddleston some time ago and are therefore used for illustration purposes.