Saturday, 21 May 2016

Tree Pipits and Wood Larks at The Brecks

4th May 2016

Another visit to The Brecks for more Wood Larks and hopefully a Tree Pipit or two. We started today by the railway at Santon Downham and carried out the loop through the underpass. Sadly it was very quiet from a bird point of view but we did manage to come face-to-face with this little chap. Quite pleased that there was a fence between us, but I suspect he was quite docile.

Next stop was a cleared area near Mundford that I noticed a couple of years ago. I have been meaning to stop there ever since but have never quite got round to it, so today was the day. It had all the hall marks of clear-fell and but no linear piles of tree stumps and no newly planted saplings, so the reason for the tree felling and removal is unclear.

As soon as I stumbled over the trailing brambles I could immediately hear a Tree Pipit singing away at the top of a tree. It then flew to the other side of the clearing to a rather tall Beech and sat there, singing intermittently. Photography was difficult as although it was possible to approach the bird, it was very high up and therefore the angle was difficult. Anyway, theses difficulties were offset by the beautiful light conditions.

Now back to the clear-fell by Santon Downham where surprisingly no Tree Pipits were singing or evident, so just as well that we connected with the one at the other site. We were trying to get close to a Whitethroat singing from the top of one of the log piles when I caught something out of the corner of my eye. There, just 30 yards away sitting on top of one of the newly planted saplings was a Wood Lark. Unfortunately the sun was from the wrong direction so it took a bit of backing off, manoeuvring round and a stealthy approach to get into position for a couple of hundred shots. How good is that?

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