The Whitlingham Bird Report for 2016 is now available to download here.

The previous reports are also availble: 2015 here,
2014 report here and the 2013 report here. Thanks to everyone who has contributed sightings, information and photos to these reports.

You may also be interested in Chris Durdin's Thorpe Marsh Wildlife Report for 2016, which is available http://www.honeyguide.co.uk/documents/ThorpeMarshesWildlifeReport2016.pdf

THORPE MARSH: A dusk visit

30th January 2016

On Saturday I decided to head to Thorpe Marsh rather than Whitlingham. I timed my visit for late afternoon so that I would still be present at dusk and able to check for owls. As the footbridge is still closed for another two months I headed down Bungalow Lane, dodging the large puddles.


The path running east to west across the marsh was closed due to flooding, so I headed to the main path along the wooded northern edge of the marsh. There were a couple of particularly muddy bits, but it wasn't as bad as I had been expecting. Scanning from the bird screen I saw a group of 41 Pochard, with another fifteen or so spread out across the rest of the broad. A few large gulls were dropping in, but all were Herring Gulls. Walking further around the broad I heard a Water Rail calling from Whitlingham. This set off one close by the path at Thorpe, although it steadfastedly kept out of sight. I walked towards the footbridge to have a look at the swanky new interpretation board.


Walking past the cattle pound I heard a Meadow Pipit flying overhead and saw an overwintering Chiffchaff in some bramble scrub. Further patch ticks were three Linnets and a Grey Wagtail, both also flying westwards, and a Coal Tit calling from the wooded area as I worked my way back to the end of Bungalow Lane. I found myself a good viewpoint over the marsh and waited until it got dark, hoping to see a Barn Owl, but had no luck. I did get good views of two Chinese Water Deer feeding out on the marsh before calling it a day and carefully making my way back along the lane.


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