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Saturday 25th March 2023

Very blustery today with strong south westerly winds and sporadic rain showers. Despite this, there was still some interesting movement, our first black-tailed godwit of the year flew south along with a scattering of other waders, a single golden plover and 13 dunlin. Chaffinch numbers picked up a little, with 40 flying south along with 12 siskin. The male firecrest was still present from yesterday and a black redstart (or two) were in and around the compound during the morning. 

Birds Ringed: Blackbird 1.

AGM Reminder

Reminder that this years bird observatory AGM will be on Saturday 1st April 2023. Members will have received an agenda plus the minutes of last AGM. If this is not the case it could be that we do not have your up to date email address so please email for details.

Friday 24th March 2023

A brighter day, with a fresh south westerly, wasn't good for many migrants, but there were some notable species. Rooks and Jackdaws thought today was a good day for a trip across the river, though some of the latter thought better of it and turned back. Our 2 firecrests turned into 4 firecrests, and were joined by some new chiffchaffs, a single siskin, and, unusually, another single long-tailed tit. 

Birds Ringed: Black Redstart 1, Chiffchaff 2, Firecrest 2, Linnet 1, Robin 1.

Thursday 23rd March 2023

Before the blustery wind picked up we had a few migrants of note pass through, the first brambling of the month flew south, and our third male firecrest of the year in the holm oaks. Linnet numbers have picked up, with 60 being the total for today. 9 sanderling on the beach were the first we've had in some time.   

Moths were thin on the ground because of the strong winds in the night. However, the sunny conditions during the morning were conducive to our first butterfly records of the year, with a peacock and a comma out on the nature reserve. Frogs were spawning in the Butts Pond despite the chilly temperatures. 

Birds Ringed: Chiffchaff 1, Great Tit 1, Long-tailed Tit 1. 

Ringing Recoveries

Mediterranean Gull ringed LBO 15th January 2010 was recorded 78 km away in Great Yarmouth 20th October 2015, in Belgium 17th August 2017, in Great Yarmouth 19th January 2018 & again in Great Yarmouth 10th January 2022. Looks like it winters in Great Yarmouth but is only recorded occasionally.

Lesser Redpoll ringed LBO 26th October 2022 was retrapped 16km away in Hollesley four days later.

Lesser Redpoll ringed LBO also on 26th October 2022 was retrapped 245 km away at Ramsley Reservoir, Derbyshire on 23rd February 2023 presumably on its way back north.

House Sparrow ringed LBO 17th October 1997 skeletal remains was found under a roof fascia on 15th November 2022 so well done to the builder who found it & took the trouble to report as it would have been dead a considerable time.

Wednesday 22nd March 2023

Blustery day. Migrants included southbound 32 Chaffinch & Merlin plus on site 4 Mipit, 3 Chiffchaff, 2 Chaffinch, Blackcap, Black Redstart & a new Blackie. Offshore southbound 7 Brent, 6 Dunlin, 4 Red-throated Diver, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, Curlew, Great Crested Grebe & Shelduck with northbound 2 Red-throated Diver plus a Gannet with the gulls behind shipping.

Ringing: 2 Chaffinch, 1 Blackbird, 1 Blue Tit, 1 Chiffchaff.

Tuesday 21st March 2023

A quiet morning today, the southerly wind was not conducive for much migration. Chaffinch numbers have returned to their more regular levels (2!), a third wheatear and a black redstart were the most notable species along with a single fulmar that flew over the observatory on its way back north. Other than that, the breeding season continued for the locals with magpies and crows collecting nesting material and the ringed plovers having their noisy territorial disputes before settling down. Linnets and great tits are singing sporadically around the observatory compound. 

Oak Beauty is an early season flyer that lives here in small numbers.

Birds ringed: Chiffchaff 2.

Monday 20th March 2023

An early morning shower, whilst unexpected, provided conditions for the highest spring record of chaffinch passage, with 448 passing south throughout the morning. The previous spring record was 142 on the 25th March 1987. These were joined by 7 siskin and a small group of greenfinch, though the latter seemed to hang around the reserve rather than move through. 

Goldcrest numbers were up to a massive 2! though chiffchaff numbers are slowly dropping and there was no sight or sound of the firecrests today. Yesterdays long-tailed tits were still present in the compound throughout the morning, before slowly making their way north. 

Twin-spotted Quaker is recorded here roughly once every three years.

Birds Ringed: Blackbird 2, Chaffinch 2, Long-tailed tit 3, Robin 1.


Sunday 19th March 2023


Another dose of rain to start the day - we seem to have gone from drought to deluge over recent weeks ! Today's migrants include 12 Redwing, 6 Long-tailed Tit, 5 Chaffinch, 5 Song Thrush, 3 Wheatear, 2 Jackdaw,  Black Redstart, Firecrest, Goldcrest, Meadow Pipit, Short-eared Owl & Snipe. Heading south overhead 119 Wood Pigeon, 6 Goldfinch, 4 Chaffinch, Kestrel & Meadow Pipit. Offshore southbound 60 Black-headed Gull, 7 Dunlin & 3 Brent with northbound 52 Black-headed Gull, 12 Red-throated Diver & 4 Eider plus a Great-northern Diver that came in from the north and pitched in on the sea. Worth a mention is the first Frog spawn of the year on the Butts pond.

First Early Thorn of the year which occurs here in low numbers probably living on the Hawthorn bushes.

Ringing: 6 Long-tailed Tit, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Blue Tit, 1 Goldcrest, 1 Redwing.