I have had another report that over the weekend up to eight Buzzards were seen soaring together over the North of the village and then drifting away towards Thickthorn. With this in mind I have located the following video which will assist with identifying these big predators and help split them from large gulls which are the only other likely bird they could be mistaken for which have much narrower wings even at distance.
The following is an extract from The Birds of Norfolk (Henry Stevenson 1866) which highlights the fact that the Buzzard has made a comeback over the decades since the book was published with changes in game-keeping practices and reduction in general persecution:
‘The Common Buzzard visits us annually in small numbers both in spring and autumn, but rarely in mature plumage. It has probably ceased for some years to breed in this county, although when the term common was really applicable to this species, it was frequently known to do so, and the large woods at Hethel and Ashwelthorpe are specially mentioned by Lubbock as amongst its former haunts.’
Stevenson’s book is freely available over the internet and is worth a read. I will be highlighting other local interest points from the book in the future