Saturday, 5 April 2014

The patio keeps delivering

The small patio/pergola I've been building has propagated a birding life of it's own over the past 3 weeks.  First came the 2 Glossy Ibis that Ben and I lucked in on when we picked up the slabs and the close encounters with Peregrine and Marsh Harrier on our way home.  Last weekend I had every intention of getting those slabs down but got completely way laid, between aborted sand buying attempts, by the great birding to be had last Saturday.  Incidentally the Baikal Teal has moved to the Washes at Sutton Gault today and the Ring-necked Duck was at Four balls Farm again.

Today most of the slabs were laid.  My parents, down from Yorkshire, are always great at helping me get things done and their Easter trips over the last 4 years have also had great birds over the garden.  The first year a pair of Peregrine lazed over the house and put on a great display tumbling and play fighting, the year after we were working in the garden and a female Goshawk circled over and south,  a couple of years ago it was the Hen Harrier/Pallid Harrier hybrid that wizzed over and fortunately allowed pursuit across the causeway to the beet pits allowing Ben and Stuart Sharp to enjoy it.

 I did comment this morning that we were due an Osprey but it was pretty quiet all day in the skies.  Before jumping in the shower this evening I had a quick scan out of the back bedroom window that looks across to Kingfishers Bridge in the distance.  2 scans and I'd picked up a big old bird at distance, following it across the skyline it turned to a more horizontal profile - chuffing hell a Crane and another appeared just behind it.  Both birds flew across the horizon heading, I guess, over Little Thetford and onwards NW and lost to view. What a great garden tick.  There must be plenty of alternative names for Crane from the past, in medieval times I believe they were known as Lunch.