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Saturday 18th February 2012

6 Oyks, 5 Brents, 4 Teal, 3 Goldeneye, 2 Great-crests, 1 Dunlin south 5 Brent, 2 Red-throated Divers, 1 Great-crest, 1 Shelduck north. 2 Sanderling still on the beach with the Purp flying south along the shore to the point as the tide came up.

Friday 17th February 2012

Mild morning with the last few remnants of snow almost disappeared. Bird wise a handful of Brents & Shelduck went back & forth with singles of Skylark going both north & south. Apart from that it's the usual birds in the usual places.

February Litter Pick

Litter Pick this Saturday 18th February 0930hrs start. For further info please see the Events page on

Thursday 16th February 2012

Signs of early spring passage with 5 Skylarks north & 1 south. Although it is difficult to get ones head round the concept of spring movements at this time of the year it is not uncommon for Skylarks to contemplate returning to the breeding grounds this early in the season. A flock of 24 Barnacle Geese south offshore will probably be birds that have been wintering in Britain making their way back to the Low Countries. Also on the move offshore 11 Brent north 5 south, 6 Shelduck, 3 Dunlin & a Great-crested Grebe south. A couple of Robins singing is good to hear as they have been a bit on the quiet side during the recent cold spell which has undoubtedly thinned a few of them out. Finally 2 Sanderling still on the beach & a Snow Bunting flew over the obs.

Recent Ringing Recoveries

Amongst the recent batch of recoveries received are a number of Lesser Redpolls. A couple were caught here having been ringed a few days previously elsewhere up the Suffolk coast. More noteworthy is one ringed here on 20th October 2011 re trapped 8 days later at Sandwich Bay Bird Obs in Kent 75km away - it might only be that far in a straight line but takes me twice as many miles to drive there. Another ringed here on 14th November 2010 was re trapped by Spurn Bird Observatory at Kilnsea in Yorkshire on 31st October 2011 whilst another ringed here on 31st October 2010 was re trapped in Belgium on 23rd October 2011.

Wednesday 15th February 2012

The final remnants of the snow are finally disappearing. A bit of action offshore. 58 Cormorants north 11 south, 36 Brents north 7 south, 5 Red-throated Divers north, 5 Common Scoter north, 4 Great-crested Grebe south, 2 Pintail north, 1 Red-breasted Merganser north & 1 south. An immature male Eider came in from offshore, pitched in for a while and did some ducking and diving, then flew up river. A Canada Goose flew south just offshore which is a bit early in the year for this species to start going walkabout. Finally 2 Snow Buntings were on the beach & at least one Woodcock is still with us.

Tuesday 14th February 2012

Brief visit only in the afternoon due to spending the morning up the Orwell participating in a low water count. It was a surprise to catch a new Little Owl in the helli upon arrival on site & i suspect this is one of the youngsters from last year as we certainly didn't ring them all. A Woodcock was flushed on site and 4 Med Gulls came down for bread when i put some out for them - that is the bread the greedy Wood Pigeons & Rabbits left for them.

Monday 13th February 2012

Slow thaw but still a bit parky. Three flocks of Wigeon totalling 470 birds going south are presumably birds relocating following the end of the cold snap. Also on the move 6 Great-crested Grebes south (plus 1 offshore), 3 Red-throated Divers & a Common Scoter. 2 Woodcock & 6 Mipits on site with the other refugees from the snow seemingly having moved on to pastures new. 2 Sanderling & a Grey Plover still along the riverbank conclude this mornings interest.


For those of you who purchase items on line please can i draw your attention to Easy Fundraising which is a simple and easy way to support us and raise money for the Bird Observatory at no cost to yourselves. Further information is available at the base of our home page on Many thanks to those of you who have purchased items this way.

2012 Warden

We are currently advertising for a warden for this year. Interested individuals need a BTO "A" or "C" bird ringing permit. Ringers can find more details in the latest edition of "Ringers News" and from

Sunday 12th February 2012

Fresh dusting of snow overnight & still bitterly cold first thing. It's getting milder now with rain and drizzle plus very poor visibility as a thaw sets in. A brief walk round produced 5 Golden Plover, 4 Snow Buntings, Sanderling, Grey Plover & Rock Pipit but as it's all a bit unpleasant (weather wise) i am going to abandon ship. Worth a mention is that when leaving the site yesterday, just north of the Customs House, a Water Rail crossed View Point Road in front of the car & was fortunate not to get splattered by a vehicle coming in the opposite direction.