The Whitlingham Bird Report 2020 is available now (click here)

For previous years (2012-2019) see the links on the Whitlingham Bird List page.

THORPE MARSH: Stonechats and Alder Goblet

25th February 2017

A trip out to Thorpe Marsh, and I saw the pair of Stonechats that have been wintering here but have been rather elusive since January (apparently they are easier to see in the morning, which makes sense). It was good to hear both Green and Great-spotted Woodpeckers, the rainy weather on many of my local visits has meant a dearth of birdsong.

The highlight of my walk was a small fungus called Alder Goblet, a stalked cup fungus that grows on decaying Alder catkins. Whilst walking along the edge of the riverside wood I saw an Alder and thought it looked like a good site for this species, so I had a quick look and found it within minutes. It is under-recorded in Norfolk, and subject to confirmation this might be a new record for TG20.

Whilst looking for fungi I also noticed a liverwort growing on many of the willow trunks. Realising that I hadn't recorded any liverworts here or at Whitlingham I took a closer look, and thanks to attending a few 'Mossing for Beginners' events I was able to identify it as Metzgeria furcata. There weren't many plants in flower, but I did see my first Lesser Celandines of the year out, another sign that spring is on the way.

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