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Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Buckenham Marsh: if only....

I met up with Brian & Norman for a walk around the Fen before the forecast thunderstorms arrived: very pleasant, too! Nothing to set the pulses racing, but the sky was absolutely full of Marsh Harriers. I'm so old I can remember when, back in the early 70s, the UK population of these splendid raptors was down to a single pair: at times today there were a dozen in the air at once! If only the same could be achieved with Hen Harriers...

Worryingly few dragonflies or butterflies: I did see my first Gatekeeper of the year and a few lingering Hairy Hawkers and Scarce Chasers, but just a single Migrant and a possible Southern. The rough ground to the west of the cottage held most of these, as well as a nice drift of Centaury.

Second 'if only': the scrape at Buckenham was crawling with waders: over 60 Black-tailed Godwits, fifteen Avocets and at least two Ruff. Only problem is that the hide is about half a mile from the scrape! It's hard to understand the mind-set of the people who planned / executed this! You couldn't make it up, really: no waders at SF because the water levels are maintained too high, plenty at BF, but the scrapes they frequent are half a mile away from the closest watch points!

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