This week has seen the coldest overnight temperatures so far this Autumn and most days have been grey and damp. This morning I watched as flurries of crows and magpies flocked and swarmed as though enjoying a brief break in the gloom. I am not sure what caused this behaviour but it was uplifting to watch. The cold weather has seen an increase in thrushes and blackbirds devouring the berry crop and waxwings are popping up around Norwich so could appear in the village any time soon.
The Apex predators have created the real highlights for me and the first occurred in Norwich as I sat waiting at a red light in traffic. What I expected to come through the lights at the junction was may be a bus or a taxi but no vehicular transport came through instead a Peregrine falcon flew through at a leisurely pace (for a peregrine top speed 240 MPH 390 KPH) doubtless of to Norwich Cathedral after a hunting mission locally. The other highlight came as I watched a few garden birds which tend to come through in flocks at this time of year as much for safety as any othe reason. There were Long tailed tits, blue tits, great tits as well as a couple of gold crests and the ever present dunnocks, chaffinch and blackbird . All the birds were busy feeding up before a cold night and then they were replaced by a young male sparrowhawk who dazzled my 6 year old accomplice and then flipped away over the fence.
Not my sparrowhawk but another of Hethersett’s finest
Other highlights for me this week included a brief visit to Whitlingham Country Park to check if the visiting Goosander was present and whilst he wasn’t there were still plenty of highlights including roaming flocks of siskins as well as some very active goldcrests . On the water were tufted duck, mallards , coot, Canada geese, greylag geese as well as the local gulls which included numerous black-headed gulls watched over by a Lesser black backed Gull. Both Gulls remain constant visitors to Hethersett and I shall leave you with their images.
Lesser Black-backed Gull