Wednesday 4th October – Boyton, Suffolk   Leave a comment

A vagrant north American Sandhill Crane has made its way south from Scotland, via Northumberland and Norfolk and for the last few days has taken up residence in coastal Suffolk. This is the fourth record for the UK, and to the best of my knowledge, the first for England.

Having the opportunity to see this magnificent species within a reasonable distance of home, Brett Spencer, Mike Gibbons, Paul Morrison and I set off this morning at the ungodly hour of 0200. After navigating a maze of narrow lanes to the easy of Ipswich we arrived at the favoured stubble field at 0650 just at the moment the crane flew in from its roost on Havergate Island. In retrospect such an early start wasn’t necessary, but had the bird opted to continue its journey south soon after dawn we would have felt pretty sick if we had delayed our departure.

Also seen were three Marsh Harriers, a Peregrine, a flyover Spoonbill, 2 Crossbill and a Golden Plover.

 

Boyton, Suffolk. East Anglian skies are often described as 'wide open' which is a euphemism for a flat landscape.

 
 

Considering the extreme rarity of the species, the turn out was quite low, but that will change if it stays to the weekend!

 
 

The Sandhill Crane in flight against the eastern sky.

 
 

Most flights were of short duration and mostly seen as a silhouette.

 
 

At over half a mile away, a hand-held digiscoping shot was the best I could manage.

 
 

Adult Sandhill Crane - USA - photo from the internet

 
 

Also present were some Willow Emerald Damselflys, a recent colonist of this part of East Anglia and a tick for the entomologists amongst us

 
 
 

Posted October 5, 2011 by gryllosblog in Uncategorized

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