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WHITLINGHAM: Thorpe Marshes and some Lapwings

15th July 2011

I'd noticed that Ricky had found two Green Sandpipers at Thorpe during the week, and sensing my 100th patch bird of the year I walked up there after work. Despite extensive scanning of the spit and broad edges I didn't find them, but they could well still be on site somewhere. Eitherway I would still expect to pick up Green Sand over the summer or autumn. Four Common Terns were screeching around, including two juveniles, which was pleasing. The recent Norfolk Bird Atlas doesn't show any breeding nearby (although I remember seeing a juvenile at Strumpshaw last year), so hopefully this is the first step to colonisation of this part of the river. Despite recent rain the scrape didn't have any standing water, but it did have 66 Lapwing, a reasonable summer count. Insect wise I saw my first Norfolk Hawker for the site and several small white micro moths which I need to have a look at.

On my way back I called in at Carey's Meadow. I was frustrated by loads of elusive stridulating insects, which I initially presumed were grasshoppers but having failed to see one I am now wondering if they are some sort of phantom insect. Or leafhoppers. They sounded like someone winding on the film on a disposable camera, so if that rings a bell then please put me out of my misery. I also saw a newly emerged Burnet moth, presumably 6-spot, but the top two spots were merged, which may make it 5-spot/narrow 5-spot, which can't be separated 100% etc etc so again, if you know what Burnet moths have been verified at Carey's Meadow please don't keep the information to yourself!

Upon returning home I decided to relax with a bottle of beer. Unfortunately I picked the bottle of "Black Death", which is flavoured with what is affectionately called Death Chilli (I believe there is now one hotter, but it used to be the hottest chilli in the world). Suffice to say I didn't finish the whole bottle.

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