Birdline East Anglia bird news for Suffolk for August 2009
by Robin Chittenden


The most strange sighting in Suffolk during August was an Ortolan Bunting at Landguard NR 25th. Not only is this species a scarce migrant but this bird also had unusually pale pigmentation in its feathers, which gave birdwatchers a bit of a headache when it came to identifying it.

A Marsh Sandpiper was reported briefly at Levington Creek 30th and Pectoral Sandpiper was at Orford Ness NT 16th.

A juvenile Ferruginous Duck was at Minsmere RSPB 28th-29th and a male Red-footed Falcon and a Spotted Crake were there 30th.

The Great White Egret wandered from its home at Hen Reedbeds NR to visit Benacre Pits, Minsmere RSPB & Walberswick. Perhaps another Great White Egret was seen near Aldeburgh 8th. Up to nineteen Spoonbills were at one of the favoured Suffolk hangouts for the species at Havergate Island RSPB.

The first Red-backed Shrike of the autumn was at Kessingland 25th. Wood Warblers were at Gunton & Minsmere RSPB 29th.

There were several sightings of Montagu’s Harrier with birds seen at Boyton Marshes RSPB, Orford Ness NT, Shingle Street, Felixstowe Ferry and Falkenham Marshes. A Honey Buzzard was spotted soaring over Elveden 8th, nearby two Ravens flew east over West Stow CP 30th.

A Roseate Tern was seen at Lowestoft 8th & 15th and an early returning Purple Sandpiper was at Ness Point 2nd-4th.

Several colonies of Western Willow Spreadwing damselflies were found in south-east Suffolk. Sites near Butley and a Trimley St. Mary held up to fifty individuals. This species breeds right up to the English Channel and was an expected colonist. Also a potential colonist was a Migrant Spreadwing found at Old Felixstowe. Note that Migrant Spreadwing is the new name for what were previously known as Southern Emerald Damselfly and Western Willow Spreadwing is the new name for Willow Emerald Damselfly.



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