Monday, 25 September 2017

Sep 25th Dersingham Bog and Titchwell

Dersingham Bog
This morning, Mum and I decided to have another go in finding a black darter dragonfly. This time, we travelled to Dersingham Bog. The weather was a vast improvement to our previous search for one at Roydon Common earlier this month, however, the result was the same. No black darters. I was told to visit the pond here at Dersingham where I was guaranteed that they'd be there, but I couldn't figure out how to get to it. So, we just walked around the boardwalk area and hoped that they would show up, but a common darter was the best I could come up with. Oh well! At least we enjoyed watching the stonechats, house martins and swallows as well as looking at the sundews, wild cranberries and other bog-loving plants growing beside the boardwalk.

Common Darter
Wild Cranberry
Meadow Grasshopper (I think)
Small Copper

Little Stint
Conceding on our black darter search, we decided to head to Titchwell for lunch and for a walk to the beach and back. We stopped at Island Hide along the way. Teals and ruffs were feeding in the mud close to the hide, but our attention was on the waders at the edge of the reed bed borders. A snipe was busy probing it's long bill into the mud for it's next meal, while about 3 little stints patrolled the area around it. Being about half the size of the snipe, these little stints looked as if they were in a world of giants. They truly are tiny waders, moving in bursts like wind-up toys. I saw a few other little stints dotted elsewhere on the freshwater pool, blending extremely well with the islands of mud surrounding them. We also saw a large flock of golden plovers, a few shelducks, a marsh harrier and a water rail.
Two Ruffs, both different ages and sizes
Water Rail
Golden Plover
Collard Dove

Walking alongside the two saltwater pools, we admired the black-tailed godwits, redshanks, grey plovers, curlews and a heron. A very peaceful scene with the calls of the redshanks and other waders filling my ears and the visual spectacle of the bird's reflections on the water delighting my eyes.

Black-tailed Godwit
Grey Plover
Grey Heron

Purple Sandpiper
On the beach, we saw the purple sandpiper that was snoozing on the ruined WW2 pillbox. With it's head under it's wing, it was unaware of the small crowd of photographers watching it and waiting for the bird to stir from it's slumber. And watching the photographers, metres from their feet, was a black-headed gull and a common gull, which was less bold, hoping for some attention and any handouts of food. On the shoreline, there birds galore making the most of the exposed seaweed before the tide covered it over again. Oystercatchers, bar-tailed godwits, knots, turnstones, ringed plovers, redshanks and many other things to mention were too busy with this vanishing banquet that they didn't take any notice of me standing close by. Over the sea, the first arriving flocks of brent geese of the winter were flying in the distance in messy V-formations.
Black-headed Gull
Common Gull
Bar-tailed Godwit
Brent Geese
Despite not seeing the black darters, it has been a pleasant day nonetheless. It has been full of great birds and sunshine. And on the way home, before I could reflect on what I saw today, a pair of red kites soared along the roadside with their iconic forked tails spread wide for me to see clearly in that brief second as our car passed them by. A great end to a great day!

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