West Hethersett Loop

Hethersett West Walk

This is my favourite birding walk locally but does contain a stretch of road so if you are looking for traffic free option turn around at point 8. and return to the village using the original path or an alternative footpath available just south of point 5. Check out the attached link for alternative route:

http://www.walk4life.info/walk/hethersett-walk-norfolk-health-heritage-and-biodiversity-walk

The start point for birding highlights is the hedgerow beside the path which leads from the end of Grove Road towards The Pit.

1) This hedgerow has usually got a good selection of hedgerow standards including great titblue titchaffinchdunnock and wren . In summer there are usually resident whitethroats and occasional lesser whitethroats.

2) This scrub-land and surrounding hedges has held tawny owl, barn owl and little owl in the last couple of years although sightings are irregular. Stopping at this point at the start or end of the day will normally point you towards the nearest song thrush possibly in trees overhead.

3) This copse of trees contains many that will attract finches and whilst goldfinch will be common in the winter feeding on seeds you may also see siskin.

4) The fishing lake which can only be seen clearly from one point on the route, from the permissive footpath, may give glimpses of mallardmoorhen cormorant. kingfisher canada goose or barnacle goose. If you are very lucky you may see common tern or even otter (seen May 2015). WARNING The fishing lake and surrounds is private property do not trespass. All the birds can be seen well with patience from the view shown below.

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5) The large ivy covered trees on this hedgerow are full of flocks of small birds in the Winter with regular goldcrests in amongst the long-tailed tits and more common great tits and blue tits. The number of woodpecker holes evident in some of the rotted trees hints that both great spotted and green woodpeckers are regular here. Listen here in spring and Summer for singing Chiffchaff.

6) The edge of this field nearest the farm is the best place to see pheasants and red-legged partridge  the field will have black-headed gulls in winter and possible grey heron.throughout the year. Early Jan 2015 has seen flocks of up to 25 pied wagtail and meadow pipit as well as robins feeding.

7) This small pond will usually hold a moorhen if you have not already seen one and the dense bushes locally will hold blackbirds and other thrushes in winter.

8) This field holds an over wintering Egyptian goose flock (2014-2015) and the surrounding hedges and trees are favoured hunting spots for kestrel and sparrow hawk 

9) Fruit trees and gardens attract a wide range of birds to this area including bullfinches.

10) Hedgerows along this stretch of road have a healthy selection of berries attracting winter thrushes and the Oaks trees have been know to attract Little Owl.

11) These hedge rows are some of the best locally for yellowhammers who will be singing their hearts out from early spring. The local fields are also worth watching for other wildlife including rabbit fox and roe deer which have all been seen locally.

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