The year's not quite over! 28 December 2013

With a day to myself and cloudless blue skies it would have been a shame not to make the most of it and do some birding. So it was off to the Lowestoft area.

My main aim was to see the Glossy Ibis of the last few days at Oulton Marshes but having never been to the site before I spent ages trying to find where to access the reserve! After much map consulting, scanning for an elusive 'viewing platform' and then a lengthy and muddy walk I eventually found the spot. Luckily the ibis was in view on arrival and showed nicely albeit a little distant. It had a fly round at one point and landed in a spot slightly closer and in better light enabling a bit of phone scoping for a record shot. A lovely male Hen Harrier flew through and both Marsh Harrier and a Common Buzzard circled overhead. On the trudge back a male Bullfinch added a splash of colour to proceedings.

Glossy Ibis, Oulton Marshes

Glossy Ibis, Oulton Marshes

I then drove the short distance to Waveney Forest and walked to the 'viewing mound' where it's possible to gain some height to view a nice vista of Haddiscoe Island. One of the wintering Rough-legged Buzzards (the adult) was perched on a gate in the middle of the marsh with a Chinese Water Deer in close attendance but despite a good look I couldn't find any other raptors at all. The newly created clearfell area in woods yielded a flock of c20 Common Crossbills on the way back to the car.
Rough-legged Buzzard (and Chinese Water Deer), Haddiscoe Island

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