Wednesday 17 January 2024

Lowestoft Life - 16th January 2024

The Wren taxi service saw me throwing Antony and Nathan out at Pagets for an appointment, on a glorious but very cold morning and I headed straight to the Rugby Club car park on the south side of Breydon Water once again. 

Five layers later I was wobbling down to the river wall hoping that the tide would be good.  It was spot on and well on the way in although it took me a while to realise that the rising water was actually coming from up river and not the seaward direction.

The number of Wigeon was immense with several thousand way out at the ASDA end and I toyed with the idea that an American Wigeon may well be amongst them.  Indeed, a possibly male was seen shortly after I left by someone a lot closer than I! 

Pintail and Teal were amongst them along with the hoped for array of waders which were all push towards the east end as the shallow mud flats were covered by the encroaching spume laden waters.  Dunlin, Knot, Ringed, Grey and Golden Plovers, both Godwits, Curlews, Oystercatchers, Avocets, Redshank and Turnstone were all seen with a handful of Snipe on the inland side.

Golden Plovers


Bar-tailed Godwits

Bar-tailed Godwits


Ringed Plover

Ringed Plover and Dunlin

Marsh Harriers and Buzzards could be seen along the north bank and a Short-eared Owl was up and not happy, performing  exaggerated arcs quite high up but I could not see what had upset it.  A small flock of 30 Pinkfeet spiralled into the Acle Straight fields.  Six Redwing perched up in the Birches and one was very dark and heavily marked on the breast, flanks and undertail and the ground colour underneath was also not so gleaming white and I wondered if it could have been an Icelandic bird.


I had time to pop a bit further north and nipped up to Filby Broad where I found the female Ferruginous Duck quickly in the south east corner as she actively fed with the Tufted Ducks. I always think that this species swims lower in the water than other Athya.  Several Goldeneye were sparkling and the Gibbons of Thrigby Hall were in fine voice.  A Kingfisher was vocal on the walk back and Coal Tits were singing in the car park.

With their hospital visit done I picked them back and headed to Beccles to drop Nathan at school before we pulled off at Worlingham for a walk out onto the marsh. The Fieldfares were in the same field that I saw them in two days earlier but the Grey Wagtail that Andrea found in a ditch from the car was not around before Antony and I reached the end of the track.  It was calm and bright but that bitter breeze was returning and thwarted our Short-eared Owl attempts but it was a pleasant walk down to the Waveney with a skein of about 70 Pink-feet over, two Red Kites and Buzzards and several Snipe. 


Siskin - he was in fine song

These Pink-feet threw me to start with as they looked very dark - thoughts welcome


There were early stage moth opportunities with Limnaecia phragmitella in the Greater Reedmace and one of the ‘either or’ species creating bendy Alder catkins as well as the bullet hard seedheads of Burdock occupied by Metzneria lappella.

Endothenias lurked within

Argyrestia geodartella / brockeella

Limnaecia phragmitella - Penduline Tit food

The cold got the better of us and we retreated back to the car. I will certainly be back.

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