Page 1

Systematic List

The 2012 Suffolk Bird Report Systematic List Introduction The list and its appendices have been written using data supplied by the county's birdwatchers and conservation organisations. The order has changed and follows the revised BOU list. The raw data have been collated and interpreted by the following:Swans and geese Gi Grieco Ducks Andrew Green Game birds, rails to Crâne John Davies Divers to Spoonbill Raptors

John Grant Chris Gregory

Oystercatcher to Ruff Snipes to phalaropes

Mike Swindells John Glazebrook

Skuas to gulls Terns to auks Pigeons to woodpeckers Shrikes, corvids, crests, tits

James Wright Andrew Easton Malcolm Wright

Larks, hirundines Warblers, inc. Long-tailed Tit Waxwing, Nuthatch, Treecreeper, Starling, Dipper, Wren, thrushes Spotted Fly, Robin, chats, wheatears, other flycatchers, Dunnock Sparrows, wagtails, pipits,

Nathaniel Cant Andrew Gregory Richard Attenborrow

Steve Fryett

Paul Gowen

finches, buntings Peter Kennerley Appendices

Phil Whittaker

The 'officiai' British list is maintained by the British Ornithologists' Union (BOU). Species are included in various catégories according to their status, as follows: • Category A - species which have been recorded in an apparently natural state at least once since January Ist 1950; • Category B - species that would otherwise be in Category A but have not been recorded since December 3Ist 1949; • Category C - species that, although originally introduced by man, either deliberately or accidentally, have established self-sustaining breeding populations; • Category D - species that would otherwise appear in Catégories A or B except that there is doubt that they have ever occurred in a natural state; • Category E - species that have been recorded as introductions, transportées or escapees from captivity, and whose breeding populations are not thought to be self-sustaining. The main part of the species accounts consists of species that occurred in Suffolk in 2007, which fall into Catégories A and C. Where a species is included in multiple catégories, this is shown in the initial status summary. Catégories D and E do not form part of either the British or Suffolk lists. Species from these Catégories that occurred in Suffolk in 2007 are included as appendices to the main list. The order and nomenclature follow the latest published for The British List by the British Ornithologists' Union (BOU 2006). This list can be accessed on their web site at English names follow the same list. Subspecies are listed under the main species' heading, which includes the scientific name. The records for each species are listed mostly under the parish where the bird occurred, sometimes followed by a more precise location if known. The exception to this is at the river estuaries and larger, well-known sites criss-crossed by several parish boundaries e.g. Walberswick NNR, Minsmere, Orfordness, Alton Water etc. The gazetteer on page 158 gives locations for those sites not easily located on a standard road map. The order of records is north to south down the coastal région, working round the 39

Suffolk Birci Report


estuaries, then inland from the northeast to the southwest of the county. To minimise any Potential threats to site security, some records of rare breeding birds are published anonymously and under a vague site heading. As much use as possible is made of systematic monitoring schemes such as the WeBS counts. Using such co-ordinated data instead of maximum counts gives a better idea of the populations of each species wintering in the county on a given date. However, fluctuations in numbers due to changing weather patterns will affect totals and higher counts are given in the text after the table where appropriate. Counts from North Warren include Thorpeness Meare, Church Farm Marshes and the shoreline between Thorpeness and Aldeburgh; the Aide/Ore Estuary includes the complex of the Aide, Ore and Butley rivers as well as Orfordness, Gedgrave reservoir and Havergate Island; and the Orwell includes Trimley Marshes, Loompit Lake and Bourne Park Water Meadows. Counts from the Stour all refer solely to the Suffolk side of the estuary. The larger part of the report, particularly for the more common species, is based upon ad hoc records. Data of that type are influenced by the distribution of birdwatchers, the weather and other factors that result in imperfections. We are nonetheless indebted to those observers who have persevered with other studies, such as Breeding Bird Survey (BBS), Constant Effort Sites (CES) and transect counts and for making the results available for use. A summary of the Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) is given for all those species for which meaningful data are available - further information can be found on the BTO website. See 'A Guide to Recording Birds in Suffolk' elsewhere in this Report for information on submission of records. The following définitions are intended as a guide to the relative status of each species: Very common: Occurs in large numbers in suitable habitat and season. Common: Occurs regularly or widely distributed in suitable habitat. Fairly common: Occurs in small numbers in suitable habitat and season. Uncommon: Occurs annually in small numbers. Scarce: One or two records each year or restricted to specific habitats. Rare: Occurs less than annually. Very rare: Less than 15 records in past 30 years. Accidentai: Less than three records in past 30 years. Included in the status description is a note if the species is included in either the Red or the Amber List of 'Birds of Conservation Concern '. This is a paper jointly produced by the leading bird conservation organisations in the UK. See Suffolk Bird Report Vol.47: 6-10 for further détails. The following abbreviations are sometimes used in the systematic list:— ad = adult N bird(s) flying north BBS = Breeding Bird Survey N N R = National Nature Reserve CES = Constant Effort Site R River CP = Country Park res = reservoir GC = Golf Course S bird(s) flying south GP = gravel pit SW = sewage works imm = immature W M = Water Meadow Ind. Est. = industriai estate WP = Water Park juv = juvenile WR = Wildfowl Reserve



1. Bewick's Swans small gathering at Eastbridge in December.

Chris Mayne

3. Common Scoter at Southwold in October.

4. Goldeneye handsome male in early Spring. Alan Tate

Lee wooc.

5. Smew redhead at Melton in February. Chris



Systematic List MUTE SWAN Cygnus olor Common resident. Amber List. Categories A and C. Found throughout the county with the main bulk of records still coming from the southeast, where, as in 2011, there were very few breeding records compared with the sightings. The number of breeding sites and pairs has been fairly consistent in recent years and 2012 was no exception, while it was pleasing to report an increase in young noted. The number of breeding sites was 32 involving 48 pairs and a total of 108 young. Principal breeding sites include both Flixton Gravel Pits and Oulton Marshes with three pairs, Castle Marshes, North Cove with four breeding pairs, Minsmere with eight and Orfordness with three pairs but only three or four young fledged. Other breeding records of note include a pair with four young on the River Deben at Melton, two of which were 'polish' morphs and a pair with downy cygnets from a late brood on September 9th at Lackford Lakes. Peak monthly counts at selected sites: Jan Feb Minsmere 48 38 North Warren 29 32 Orfordness 6 6 Aide WeBS 135 107 Debcn WeBS 141 127 Orwell Estuary LW* 24 10 Stour WeBS 357 383 Lakenheath Fen WeBS 82 25 * LW = Low Water

Mar 17 25 12 76 153

Apr 5 --


Sep 11 25 9

Oct 37 24 10 89 97
















Nov 32 15 18 102 93 62 357 32

Dec 59 11 26 132 149 57 380 24

The main sites with regular monthly totals are listed in the table above. Elsewhere large herds could be found at Somerleyton Marshes with 78 on March 22nd, and 91 at the same site the following month. Further herds with over 50 birds were at Oulton Broad, Thorpeness Meare, Boyton Marshes, Bawdsey East Lane, Kirton Creek, Corporation Marshes, Felixstowe and Sudbury Common Lands where, in a herd of 90, there was only a single juvenile. At Loompit Lake, Trimley St Martin on December 24th there were two adult 'Polish' morph adults. TUNDRA ( B E W I C K ' S ) SWAN 9 f "f ' Cygnus columbianus bewickii J ; Fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant. W*sÂŁ Jt Amber List. Regular herds, but of a smaller size compared with 2011, were present in January and February on the coast, SuGough M u t e swan predominantly the same flock either at King's Farm in Westleton or Minsmere with highest respective counts of 40 and 56. Elsewhere there were smaller numbers on Breydon Water South and Shipmeadow, Beccles and Barsham Marshes. At Mendham Bridge two flew north-east on February 7th and there were three nearby roosting in the early morning on ice at Weybread Gravel Pits on February 9th. Emigration was noted from February 14th when three flew north at Lound Waterworks and two days later 15 flew out to sea at Lowestoft South Beach. The following week further emigration was in progress when 74 flew east at Bradwell on February 23rd with another 217 east the next day at Breydon Water and two more large flocks heading east out to sea, 70 over Kessingland on March 1st and 30 over Lowestoft on March 7th. 41

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 The first birds of the autumn were seven on Island Mere, Minsmere on October 26th with birds being present at the site to the end of the year with a peak of 35 on December 10th. Other regular sightings were nearby at both Westleton and Eastbridge, the former site reaching a maximum of 18 birds while the latter had a peak herd of 28. Passage was noted a few times at Benacre with birds flying in off the sea including five on November 18th, a further 44 on December 6th and eight on December 8th. Other records include:— Corton Cliffs: five south offshore, then back north, Nov 5th. Kessingland: two north, Dec 8th. Oulton Marshes: eight west, Dec 16th. Carlton Marshes: 17 west, Dec 2nd. North Cove: North Marsh, six over, Jan 18th; 17 west, Dec 2nd. Southwold: 40 in off the sea, in groups of 30 and ten, Dec 9th. Reydon: Smear Marshes, 40 west, Dec 9th; 17, Dec 13th. Dunwich: beach, eight in off the sea, Dec 8th; 20 south at dusk, Dec 9th. Sizewell: beach, five in off the sea, Nov 29th. Blythburgh: Hinton, four, Feb 18th. North Warren: two, Jan 23rd. Generally there were only single-figure counts in the south-east estuaries in both winter periods, the exception being 14 at Boyton Marshes on February 8th and 15 at Brantham (Cattawade) on December 10th. Other sightings include three at Falkenham during February, seven at Stutton Mill on November 18th and three on Alton Water on December 11th. In the west this species was only seen at the end of the year with a single at Walsham-le-Willows on December 1st and five at Kenny Hill, Mildenhall, three days later. At Lakenheath Fen, two separate flocks of 16 and four passed over on December 13th with three there two days later. WHOOPER SWAN Cygnus cygnus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber List. Categories A and E. In recent years there has been a three-figure herd roosting in the Lakenheath area and this was the case again in January, with 100 present on January 17th and 200, the second highest-ever Suffolk total, leaving the roost at dawn on January 22nd. On the coast the usual single-figure numbers were at traditional sites including Minsmere where a maximum of six was present in January with two last seen on the levels on March 19th. Some of these birds were also to be found nearby at Westleton. Of note, 30 flew in off the sea at Pakefield on February 6th. At the end of the year, in December, again there were small numbers relating to the same birds being seen at Westleton, Minsmere and Eastbridge while a single bird flew north over North Warren on December 12th. In Ipswich, at Holywells Park, February 23rd a flyover bird was the first record for the site (S D Noble). A sick bird at Lakenheath, colour-ringed Yellow H7V that was ringed in Iceland as a cygnet in 2007, was present on January 12th but died two days later. It was with another individual, also sick, on the same day. Subsequently the second bird also died. At the same site a bird with an injured wing remained throughout the summer from April. On October 6th four returning wintering birds arrived followed by further arrivals during November reaching a maximum of 19 on 12th. Other records from the west include 15 flying over Olley's Farm, Thetford on February 4th, two at Gifford's Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland on November 7th and 16 at Thetford on December 5th. TUNDRA BEAN GOOSE Anserfabalis rossicus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber List. Categories A and E. Typical numbers in both winter periods with one double-figure flock moving between a few sites on the coast early in the year. Initially ten were still present on the south levels at 42

Systematic List Minsmere from the end of 2011 ; numbers increased to 14 on January 6th and this flock was present through to March also being noted at North Warren, flying over Cowton House Marshes and later seen nearby on Sudbourne Marshes. Smaller numbers were regularly seen at Burnt Hill, Carlton Colville with four on a few dates in January. Elsewhere, three were at Boyton Marshes up to March 28th, a single at Trimley Marshes and to four at Alton Water in February. In spring there was a late single bird at Loompit Lake, Trimley St Martin recorded on April 13th and May 1st. In the west the only sightings came in January with up to four at Lackford Lakes that associated with Greater White-fronted Geese and a single bird at Thorington Street Reservoir on 16th. The first birds of the second winter period were three on North Warren on November 27th building to eight at the site by the end of the year. A flock of five commuted between Minsmere and Westleton, where they inhabited fields by the Westleton to Blythburgh road. PINK-FOOTED GOOSE Anser brachyrhynchus Locally common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber List. Categories A and E. As with recent years large skeins, sometimes numbering in the thousands, flew over sites in the north-east and in 2012 this was particularly so in January and again later in the year during October and November while there were much-diminished numbers in December. The peak counts were at Camps Heath Marshes in Oulton with 3000 on January 6th, Burgh Castle where 2500 flew over on October 3rd and at Somerleyton where 3000 flew over on November 9th. A further selection of notable sightings includes:Breydon Water south shore: 600 circled over at dusk, Feb 11th. Hopton-on-Sea: 500 south-west, Nov 1st. Bradwell: 2000 west, Oct 3rd; 1000 over, Nov 1 st. Ashby: 1100 in winter cereal field, Nov 1st. Corton: 375 south, Oct 13th; 300, Oct 20th. Flixton: 300 south-west, Jan 6th; 1000 north, Oct 6th; 300 south, Nov 7th and 8th; 300 north, Dec 2nd. Lowestoft: 600 south over Sussex Road, Oct 4th. Pakefield: 300 south, Oct 2nd. As usual smaller numbers were recorded elsewhere in the county, Boyton Marshes being a regular location with ten on January 2nd while a skein of 25 flew north-east, over the A14, at Nacton on February 11th. A single bird flew north off Landguard Bird Observatory on September 17th, one was at the RSPB reserve at Snape in November and December and a flock of five, probably a family party, flew over a garden in Bury St. Edmunds on October 25th. GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE Anser albifrons Fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber List. Categories A and E. There were lower numbers than in 2011 on the Suffolk coast with Minsmere and North Warren being the two main localities for this species. In the first winter period these two sites regularly played host, with Minsmere reaching a peak of 340 on January 26th; movement between them was evident with 335 on Minsmere south levels on January 13th and on the same day 355 at North Warren. At Thorpeness large flocks were regularly noted flying south including 400 on February 13th with similar numbers at North Warren over the following two weeks but there were no sightings at Minsmere except 27 on March 13th and 14th. What is likely to be the same flock was noted on the Aide WeBS count with 337 in January and 485 in February. During the same period at Boyton Marshes regular small numbers reached 66 on February 28th with two birds remaining until March 28th, the last sighting of the winter period. In the west five were at Lackford from January 5th to 7th, often associating with two Tundra Bean Geese, with 25 at the site on February 2nd. Five days later a flock of 34 circled over Lackford and landed briefly before flying off east. A group of 12 was at Mickle Mere on February 17th, decreasing to eight two days later with a single bird seen on March 11th. At Livermere 43

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 Lake there were seven on February 26th and 28th with two still present on March 3rd. Other records from the period include:Oulton Broad: five, Feb 1st; six, Feb 3rd. Carlton Marshes: 43 west overhead, Jan 10th. Beccles Marshes: six, Jan 8th. Kessingland: Sewage Works, 65, Jan 1st; 67, Jan 4th. Benacre Broad: two, Feb 18th. Sudbourne: 41, Jan 3rd. Havergate: five, including a juvenile, Jan 16th. Trimley Marshes: Jan 2nd. Alton Water: 12, Jan 1st; Jan 29th; Feb 9th and 12th. In the second winter period North Warren was the principal site with six birds initially on October 31 st and reaching a maximum of 234 on the final day of the year. Only recorded at a few other places including one with Greylag Geese at Oulton Broad from November 11th to December 2nd, seven at Thorpeness December 1st, a single at Botany Farm, Farnham, December 23rd and 24th and two south-west over Leathes Ham, Lowestoft on December 30th. It was remarked that a flock of 52 which flew south down river at Orfordness on January 1st was surprisingly the only sighting of the year for the site. GREENLAND WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE Anscr albifrons flavirostris Rare winter visitor. There were two records of this rare subspecies of Greater White-fronted Goose, both found by the same observer. These constitute the eighth and ninth county records. Altogether there have been 20 individuals, the previous record was in 1999 although there was a bird of uncertain origin at Oulton Broad in May 2006. North Warren RSPB: female, Feb 20th to 29th (D Fairhurst). Gedgrave and Boyton Marshes: male, Feb 7th to Mar 31st (D Fairhurst). GREYLAG GOOSE Anser anser Common resident from feral flock. Amber List. Categories A, C and E. A widespread increasing species with more three-figure flocks noted than in previous years. The principal area is still west Suffolk where it has traditionally had greater numbers, but larger flocks are occurring on the Suffolk coast. Typical numbers were recorded in the south-east. Breeding mainly occurred in the west, while across the county as a whole it was a typical year compared with the previous two years with a total of 19 sites and 35 broods with an increase in young, to 93, reported. The main sites were Hen Reedbeds, Orfordness, Barton Mere, Clare golf-course lake, Livermere Lake and, with a notable count, Hold Farm, Bures where there were four broods totalling 23 young. Peak monthly counts at selected sites: Jan Feb Mar Minsmere 222 1 168 North Warren 460 12 Ortordness 121 20 49 Aide WcBS 174 124 103 Deben 60 14 Orwell Estuary HW4 59 81 Orwell Estuary LW* 340 5 Alton Water 320 764 116 Lackford Lakes 190 * HW Âť. High Water, LW = Low Water

Apr 64 -

Sep 444 -





42 12

67 14


554 130



Oct 24 250 150 427 43 630 -

548 300

Nov no 245 34 123 201 248 637 337 137

Dec 163 338 74 183 62 783 325 406 401

Peak counts at some of the main sites can be found in the table above. Elsewhere sites with three-figure flocks include Burgh Castle, Lound Waterworks, Weybread Gravel Pits, 44



Oulton Broad, Benacre Broad, Abbey Farm RSPB in Snape, Loompit Lake, Little Bealings, Thorington Street Reservoir, Gifford's Hall in Stoke-by-Nayland and Barton Mere. The three highest counts recorded were 500+ at Trimley Marshes in January, 900 at Livermere Lake in October and 510 at Mickle Mere on December 30th. GREATER CANADA G O O S E Branta canadensis Common resident. Categories A, C and E. Found throughout the county on lakes and rivers, predominantly in the south-east with the greatest congregations present on the Aide Estuary as seen in the table below. Breeding was recorded from 11 sites with 17 pairs and 55 young reported, this being lower than in 2011, whilst that was also lower than in 2010. It could be less breeding occurrences reported or an actual decline in breeding - remembering that 2010 was one of the main Atlas years. Orfordness was again the main breeding site where at least six pairs nested and four broods totalling 28 goslings were seen. Selected other sites include Burgh Castle where two pairs raised four and three young respectively, Lound Waterworks, Kessingland Sewage Works, Culford Park and Bures. The largest flocks at Minsmere and North Warren were 102 and 110 respectively, while at the new RSPB reserve at Abbey Farm, Snape there were up to 120 in September. At Gedgrave and Boyton Marshes numbers reached over 500 with similar numbers nearby on Havergate Island, while at Loompit Lake, Trimley St Martin, over 400 were present at the end of August and 190 on Shotley Marshes in November. Peak monthly counts at selected sites: Jan Feb Lackford Lakes 103 Orfordness 32 18 Aide WeBS 584 70 DebenWeBS 21 36 Orwell Estuary HVV* 209 309 Stour LW* 114 36 *HW = High Water, IW =Low Water

Mar 128 22 258 38 56 ,


Apr -


Sep 141 23


44 21 -

103 41 -

Oct 216 87 1189 36 194 -

Nov 128 7 830 -

38 106

Dec 110 46 527 16 20 65

Along the Gipping Valley at Needham Market Lake there was a peak of 80 in February. Further large congregations included a flock of 260 at both Cavenham Pits and Gifford's Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland, in January, while during the summer 180 were at Redgrave Lake and 250 at Barton Mere. In the latter half of the year 200 were at Lackford Lakes, 156 at Great Barton on British Sugar ponds and 115 at Mickle Mere. At Culford an individual was present on October 20th with an orange neck collar - AAH, a bird ringed in Thetford. At Oulton Marshes four Canada x Barnacle hybrids were present on April 12th. BARNACLE GOOSE Branta leucopsis Scarce winter visitor and passage migrant; increasingly common feral resident. Amber List. Categories A and E. The species continues to be found mostly on the Suffolk Coast between Aldeburgh and Kessingland with the highest concentrations in the winter months. Breeding occurred only at Minsmere during the year; a further drop in numbers from the previous two years was recorded with 31 breeding pairs and four fledged young. The months of January and February had the highest numbers with flocks of 500 at Kessingland Levels on January 10th, 730 at Minsmere on February 10th while the largest count of the period, and of the year, was 1105 at Southwold on February 11th. Numbers dropped considerably from March, the highest count being of 102 at Africa Alive, Kessingland on March 10th. 45

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 It was not until August 11th that the next triple-figure flock occurred, with 202 on Minsmere Scrape. In September there were further large concentrations with 600 at Walberswick on 15th, 600 at Covehithe on 21st and 480 at Minsmere on 30th. For the remainder of the year flock numbers were lower and concentrated at North Warren, initially on October 12th when 300 flew over Thorpeness Haven and then landed on North Marsh, increasing to the largest count of 403 on December 15th. A few other sites had smaller numbers with nine at Sotterley Park on April 2nd, 18 on Oulton Marshes on April 12th, 40 at Flixton, April 30th, 12 at Barsham Marshes, June 13th and 20 on Beccles Marshes on October 9th. Peak monthly counts at the principal sites: Jan Feb Mar Minsmere 300 730 49 North Warren 280 250

Apr 50 -

Sep 480 -

Oct -


Nov 16 277

Dec 200 403

In the south-east of the county there were single-figure counts at a few sites with Trimley Marshes and Boyton Marshes being regular haunts and at Landguard there were occasional small movements offshore including 24 south and seven north on February 16th and 20 south on February 24th. In the West feral birds were at a number of sites including up to three present periodically throughout the year at Lackford Lakes and four at Livermere Lakes on November 3rd. (DARK-BELLIED) BRENT GOOSE Branta bermela bermela Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber List. Categories A and E. In the north-east, as is usual for this species, most records relate to movement along the coast offshore, with the principal watch points being Kessingland and Thorpeness. A couple of regular, feeding flocks included one in the Breydon Channel to Burgh Castle area with over 400 present in February and another at Pakefield Cliffs where, also in February, up to 207 were in a winter-wheat field. Further south there were typical concentrations on the marshes and estuaries, the main counts being 750 at Ramsholt on January 22nd, 1500 further down the River Deben on Felixstowe Marshes on February 13th, a good count of over 1150 at Sudbourne Marshes on February 11 th, a maximum on the Orwell Estuary of 1150 at Thorpe Bay, Trimley St Martin on March 22nd and 2600 at Holbrook Bay on February 14th. A leucistic bird was noted at Landguard Bird Observatory on January 1st. Smaller numbers remained in the county during April and May with some June records including over 20 at Thorpe Bay, Trimley St Martin and single figures at Gorleston, Pakefield, Kessingland, Havergate, Levington Creek and at Landguard where three were also seen in July. Peak monthly counts at selected sites: Jan Feb Orfordness 43 60 Aide WeBS 277 1074 Deben WeBS 989 1244 Orwell Estuary HW* 1004 1533 Orwell Estuary HW* 1 1393 Stour Estuary LW* 1821 2162 ÂŤHW = High Water, LW= Low Water

Mar 270 20 1284 1145

Apr 1 -

5 166





Sep 62 -


Oct 372 :1 85 204 -

Nov 27 26 790 359 609 2082

Dec 76 13 1065 1147 856 615

The first record of the autumn passage was on September 4th at Landguard. Further passage resulted in peaks on September 23rd and 24th and again in October between 8th 46

Systematic List and 12th and 21st to 26th. This was mainly noted at Kessingland, Thorpeness and Landguard with the latter two sites peaking on October 26th with 44 north and 1688 south and 20 north and 3047 south respectively. Away from the main sites in the table above the peak count was of 1000 at East Lane, Bawdsey on October 12th. In the west there was a single bird with Canada Geese on floods at Higham, near Hadleigh on November 7th and 20 flew over Lakenheath Fen on December 16th. (PALE-BELLIED) BRENT GOOSE Urania bermela hrota Uncommon winter visitor. Lower numbers than in the previous two years, but still with a good scattering of sightings in the first winter period. Three flew past Pakefield Beach on February 4th with up to four in a winter-wheat field at the cliffs there later in the month. At Covehithe up to four birds were by the church which might have related to the same flock. More sightings came from the south-east with a maximum of three on the Deben Estuary at Falkenham Marshes, Bawdsey Marshes and Kings Fleet, while around Butley Creek there were nine on Gedgrave Marshes on February 9th with the same number at Sudbourne Marshes three days later. Towards the end of the month and at the beginning of March up to 12 were recorded at Boyton Marshes, including three family parties. Other records from the period include:Burgh Castle: five, Feb 1st; six Feb 3rd. Minsmere: 65, Jan 1st; 67, Jan 4th. Thorpeness: two, Feb 18th. Orfordness: 43 west, Jan 10th. Bawdsey: East Lane, six, Jan 8th. Trimley St Martin: Thorpe Bay, 41, Jan 3rd. Holbrook: five, including a juvenile, Jan 16th. Stour WeBS: Jan 2nd. Of the fewer records in the second winter period the highest count was of 25 on the Aide WeBS count at Havergate on October 24th. At Landguard Bird Observatory they had their eighth to tenth site records including two unseasonable birds, one on May 28th and one south on May 31 st, with one south on December 17th being more typical. BLACK BRANT Branta bermela nigricans Scarce visitor. An annual visitor to Suffolk in recent times. One was noted initially at Hollesley Marshes before being present at nearby Gedgrave Marshes. Hollesley and Gedgrave Marshes: Jan 13th to 25th (D Fairhurst et al.). RED-BREASTED GOOSE Branta ruficollis Very rare visitor. An adult was present with Dark-bellied Brent Geese, initially at Felixstowe Ferry and then noted elsewhere on the Deben Estuary. The first accepted wild record since a firstwinter offshore at Southwold in November 2004. Felixstowe Ferry/King's Fleet/Falkenham/Kirton Creek/Shottisham Creek: Jan 13th to at least Mar 6th (WJ Brame et al.). EGYPTIAN GOOSE Alopochen aegyptiaea Locally fairly common resident. Categories C and E. A species that is continuing to increase around the county being located at a large number of sites, although often in small numbers, with their nature being to occupy places for a short time before moving on. The highest counts came from Bradwell New Road with 60 on January 1st and Burgh Castle with 78 on October 1st, while in the west 48 were at Lackford on January 29th, 52 at Livermere Lake on August 31st and 27 at Timworth on 47

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 October 31 st. In the south-east numbers never got into double figures, the highest being six at Botany Farm, Farnham. Breeding was also most evident in the west and north of Suffolk. Most breeding pairs and young were noted in the west of the county including two pairs at Culford Park where there was a nest in a tree cavity and one of the broods contained seven young. At Oulton Broad three pairs raised five, four and one young respectively, the latter a newly-fledged gosling first seen on October 20th. Other breeding sites were Carlton Marshes, Flixton Gravel Pits, Oulton Marshes, Weybread Gravel Pit, Herringfleet Mill, Livermere Lake, Redgrave Lake, Barton Mere and Lackford Lakes. The only breeding record from the southeast was of a pair with three young on the River Deben at Melton on May 29th. COMMON SHELDUCK

Tadorna tadorna

Locally common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Monthly counts from the key sites: Jan Feb Mar Blyth Estuary 238 236 243 Aide/Ore Estuary * 1051 894 961 Deben Estuary 484 420 591 Orwell Estuary HW 629 491 795 -T Orwell Estuary LW 666 940 Stour Estuary LW* 1426 1613 Livermere Lake* 190 181 68 * monthly maxima HW = High Water

Apr -

171 295 253

May -

Jun -













106 LW = Low Water

Oct 89 204 65 17 -


Nov 201 328 274 30 266 546 -

Dec 163 719 328 83 401 569 -

Overall numbers in January and February were high, indeed the combined January count from the five major estuaries, i.e. Blyth, Aide/Ore, Deben, Orwell and Stour is the highest in this month since 1999. The only other significant count away from sites covered in the table came from Breydon South Flats, where 100 were present on May 30th. It was a poor breeding season for this species. A total of 12 broods totalling 59 young was located at Orfordness (18 broods totalling 103 young in 2011), and only 15 large juveniles were present in mid-July suggesting a poor survival rate for the third successive year. At Livermere Lake only 40 young were present in six broods in late May (115 young in nine broods in 2011), and no other site held more than two pairs, although 30 birds were nest-prospecting in the spring and early summer at Landguard with unknown outcome. Burgh Castle, Hen Reedbeds, Sizewell, Flixton GP, Mickle Mere and Gifford's Hall, Stokeby-Nayland each supported two pairs, while single pairs were recorded at Breydon South Shore, Kessingland, Dingle Marshes, Minsmere, Melton, Beccles, Lackford Lakes, Fornham St Martin, Barton Mere and Bures. The only significant offshore movement involved 50 south off Landguard, January 31st. MANDARIN DUCK Aix galericulata Uncommon feral visitor. Small breeding population. Categories C and E. Breeding was again confirmed at Holywells Park, Ipswich, where a female accompanied 19 young, a result of brood amalgamation, May 13th, and a further recently-hatched duckling was present on June 9th. The sight of nine juveniles in the park on July 31st suggested a good proportion of these fledged successfully, although there is the possibility that at least some were hatched locally elsewhere. A pair also bred for the second consecutive year at Ipswich Golf Club, Purdis Farm, where six young were seen on May 21st and 23rd, but not subsequently. Gunton: Hall, pair, Feb 9th. Lowestoft: Leathes Ham, male. Mar 29th. Lound: Waterworks, June 9th. 48

Systematic List Oulton: May 30th. Sotterley: Park, male, Mar 31 st to Apr 10th. Ipswich: Christchurch Park, 15(11 males), Jan 17th; 17, Feb 5th; nine, July 4th; three (two males), Nov 27th. Holywells Park, 12 (six males), Jan 28th; 16, Feb 13th and 17th; 16 (eight males), Mar 11th; six, Apr 21st; female with 19 young, May 13th; 12 (eight males), May 22nd; nine including five advanced young, June 4th; ten including eight advanced young and one recently-fledged young, June 9th; 14including nine juveniles, June 23rd; 12 including nine juveniles, July31st; 14,Aug 7th; three, Sep 16th; 12 (seven males), Oct 14th; 18, Nov 18th; 23, Dec 21st. Stutton Mill: two, Dec 13th and 16th. Playford: two males, May 3rd. Purdis Farm: Ipswich Golf Club, three (two males), Jan 10th and 13th; pair, Feb 21st; five (three males), Mar 27th; pair, Apr 1st to 18th, nested in box where eight eggs laid; female with six young, May 21st and 23rd. Santon Downham: three (two males), Jan 21st; pair, Mar 12th to 21st; Mar 28th; pair. May 5th. Thetford: Nunnery Floods, female, Sep 15th; two pairs, Sep 20th. Brandon: two, Feb 25th; two males, June 5th; male, Oct 6th; three (one male), Oct 13th. Livermere Lake: male, Mar 27th to May 28th, with leucistic female, Mar 30th. Lackford Lakes: male, Jan 3rd 14th and 27th. Ickworth: Park, three, Aug 3rd and Sep 11th. Sudbury: Common Lands, male, Feb 6th and 7th. EURASIAN WIGEON Anas penelope Common winter visitor and passage migrant. A few oversummer. Amber list. Categories A and E.

oo K>

Monthly counts at selected sites: Jan Feb Mar 4 Burgh Castle* 170 930 Blvth Estuary 691 124 939 Minsmere* 568 118 645 North Warren* 1000 1870 830 4 Aide/Ore Estuary 4254 8267 1023 Deben Estuary 885 298 583 Orwell Estuar) HW 293 389 Orwell Estuary LW 1034 1566 Stour Estuary -1958 3564 Oulton Marshes* 500 100 350 Farnham Botany Farm* 200 159 Snape Abbey Farm* 180 Mickle Mere* 100 57 26 Gifford's Hall* 250 30 Thorington Street Res.* 254 120 77 Higham (nr Hadleigh)* 70 130 90 "monthly maxima HW = High Water

Sep -

219 -

80 0 12

Oct -

0 530 50 754 268 152















Nov 9 96 450 78 2712 1319 140 1043 2408

376 -

350 LW = Low Water -


506 733 1510 4801 1229 802 955 1383 130 1600 -


120 57


no 430 348 -

The highest counts of the year at North Warren (1,870 on February 17th), the Aide/Ore Estuary complex (8,267 on February 12th), the Orwell Estuary (1,566 on February 14th) and the Stour Estuary (3,564 on February 14th) coincided with the end of a very cold spell and probably comprised a high number of birds making their way back to continental Europe. Aside from those in the table, further three-figure counts during the first winter period were received from Breydon South Wall, 500, February 1st; Herringfleet Marshes, 100, February 26th and 29th; Leathes Ham, Lowestoft, 106, January 17th; Oulton Broad, 250 flew east, January 29th; Weybread GP, 160, February 5th; Alton Water, 363, February 12th and Lakenheath Fen, 117, February 12th. In the second winter period the only additional significant counts were of 250 at Flixton Decoy, October 19th and present to the end of November and 130 which flew over Carlton Marshes, December 25th. 49

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 There was the usual scattering of mid-summer records along the coast involving up to ten individuals, but no evidence of breeding. In addition, seven flying south off Kessingland, July 6th was unseasonable. The main offshore movements are listed below. Autumn passage began with 37 south off Thorpeness, August 12th and peaked with 788 south off Landguard during strong southeasterly winds on December 14th. Lowestoft: Ness Point, 116 north, Feb 4th. Kessingland: 60 north, 26 south and 28 on the sea, Jan 9th; three north, 90 south and ten on the sea, Feb 10th; 157 north and 15 on the sea, Feb 13th. Dunwich: 120 south, Dec 13th. Thorpeness: 29 north and 150 south, Oct 25th; 26 north and 320 south, Oct 26th; 118 south, Dec 31 st. Landguard: 239 south, Feb 4th; 470 south, Feb 13th; 596 south, Sep 24th; 788 south, Dec 14th. AMERICAN WIGEON Anas americana Very rare visitor. North Warren: first-winter male, Feb 1st to 4th (T Hodge). The 17th county record. The first since 2004 and the first at North Warren. GADWALL Anas streperĂ Common resident and winter visitor. Amber list. Categories A and C. Monthly countsfromthe key sites: Jan Feb Mar Sep Oct Nov Lowestoft Leathes Ham* 120 60 20 10 20 52 141 Minsmere* 235 79 180 132 340 North Warren* 37 137 157 9 2 2 Aide/Ore Estuary* 15 50 61 18 51 2 Orwell Estuary H\V 94 14 9 23 42 41 :_ Orwell Estuary LW 56 56 90 Alton Water 30 82 14 4 6 67 Lackford Lakes* 117 113 32 184 192 194 Thorington Street Res.* 112 34 38 18 22 72 *monthly maxima HW = High Water LW = Low Water

Dec 280 632 39 139 27 186 150 112 130

The majority of sites recorded their highest numbers in mid-December. Both Minsmere (632, December 16th) and Leathes Ham, Lowestoft (280, December 18th) held site-record numbers and there was also a high count of 350 at Loompit Lake, Trimley St Martin, December 18th. One of the individuals at Leathes Ham was wearing a numbered bill saddle which had been fitted at a site near Munich in southern Germany in August 2011. Minsmere also held good numbers throughout the summer, with counts of 145, June 24th, 173, July 22nd and 332, August 19th, while 166 were present at Lackford Lakes, July 22nd. Apart from those in the table, further significant counts were made at Gifford's Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland, 221, February 8th and Flixton Decoy, 100, January 14th. Following last year's poor breeding season, it is pleasing to report that numbers were back to levels approaching the norm of recent years. A total of 123 breeding pairs (79 pairs in 2011) was recorded from eight coastal and nine inland sites. Minsmere held 80 pairs (44 pairs in 2011), North Warren seven pairs, Hen Reedbeds six pairs and Dingle Marshes five pairs, while in the west of the county five broods were reported from Mickle Mere. Nationally the breeding population continues to increase and expand and now exceeds 2000 pairs. This has resulted in this species' recent removal from the list of those considered by the Rare Breeding Birds Panel. 50

Systematic List Gadwall Alias streperà x Eurasian Wigeon Alias penelope hybrid The male hybrid, first seen in March 2011, was again present at Orfordness from February 18th to March 3rd and from December lst to the end of the year. EURASIAN TEAL Anas crecca Common winter visitor andpassage migrant. Scarce resident. Amber list. Monthly counts from the key sites: Jan Feb Mar Apr Burgh Castle* 150 20 510 454 454 114 Blyth Estuar) 171 Dingle Marshes 880 34 Minsmere* 1270 138 38 407 North W'arren* 1300 600 464 520 154 Aide/Ore Estuary* 3047 3272 Deben Estuary 536 405 207 165 Orwell Estuar) HW 701 76 82 209 Orwell Estuar) LW 987 586 Stour Estuar) 1061 2375 Farnham Botany Farm* 510 8 Snape Abbey Farm* 300 450 245 92 •y-"-.--' 135 Lakenheath Fen* 153 -Lackford Lakes* 158 200 : — Higham (near Hadleigh) 104 76 Tendring Hall* 300 200 || *monthly maxima HW =High Water


Nov Dee 150 50 40 501 60 300 420 614 685 728 24 72 690 299 1178 3637 16 269 1056 144 195 824 821 942 511 501 400 500 1520 40 20 30 41 250 215 480 93 180 74 120 120 120 LW =Low Water -

Oct 0 45 184 787 100 1103 81 177

Total numbers in December benefited from the month's heavy rainfall and subsequent flooding and were higher than the December average of recent years. They included a particularly impressive count at the RSPB's new site at Botany Farm Marshes, Farnham of 1520, December 26th. Aside from those sites covered in the table, the only other significant counts in the first winter period were of 100 at Castle Marsh, North Cove, January 13th and 143 at Mickle Mere, March 18th. High summer counts were made at Minsmere of 142, July 22nd and 689, August 30th and at Trimley Marshes on the Orwell Estuary of 128, August 14th. In the second winter period additional three-figure counts were more widespread and included 150 at Breydon South Shore, October 9th, 206 at Alton Water, November 18th, 350 at Fritton Decoy, December 19th, 181 at Culford Park, December 18th and 420 at Gifford's Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland, December 15th. Breeding was not suspected, although two coastal sites held small numbers throughout the spring and summer. There was one notable offshore movement in the first winter period involving 344 south off Landguard, January 3Ist. Small summer movements were recorded from June lOth onwards, when a singleton flew south off Kessingland, but return passage did not gain momentum until August 12th, when 99 were recorded off Orfordness and 67 offThorpeness. It peaked on September 24th and counts on this date included 629 south off Landguard, the highest offshore day-count recorded at a single site since 1500 flew south off Southwold, September Ist 1994. The following significant movements were logged through the autumn and second winter period:Gorleston: 238 south, Sep 24th. Kessingland: two north and 180 south, Sep 24th. Dunwich: 300 south, Dee 13th. Thorpeness: 243 south, Sep 23rd; one north and 390 south, Sep 24th; 117 south, Oct 26th; 135 north and six south, Dee 2nd; 95 north and 15 south, Dee 29th. Landguard: 20 north and 103 south, Sep Ist; 629 south, Sep 24th; 464 south. Dee 14th.



Suffolk Birci Report 2012 GREEN-WINGED TEAL Anas carolinensis Rare visitor. Minsmerc: male, Mar 25th to 3Ist (DA Fairhurst). Alton Water: male, Jan Ist to 30th (LG Woods). The 32nd and 33rd county records. MALLARD Anas platyrhynchos Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Monthly counts from the key sites: Jan Jul Feb Mar Lowestoft Leathes Ham* 172 165 30 140 Dingle Marshes 30 84 420 Minsmere* 485 377 140 230 North Warren 150 58 39 Aide/Ore Estuary 535 655 164 Deben Estuary 110 199 32 Orwell Estuary HW 81 48 65 52 Orwell Estuary LW 302 268 Stour Estuary 231 130 Lakenheath Fen 295 103 62 Lackford Lakes* 146 353 87 Culford Park* Mickle Mere* 52 Thorington Street Res.* 224 r * 'monthly maxima HW =High Water

Aug -

331 -


Sep 60 102 65 11 -

52 19 -

Oct 95 190 252 13 104 78 0 -




198 90 186 -

190 104

Nov 140 53 77 6 348 143 48 223 134 123 212 :


100 LW =Low Water


Dec 300 86 420 107 479 224 77 430 113 206 169 142 120 150

Numbers in the first winter period were higher than the recent average. They included a WeBS count on the Aide/Ore Estuary complex of 655, February 12th, the highest count at this site since December 2006, and a WeBS count of 420 at Dingle Marshes on January 22nd, the highest count at this site since January 2006. Aside from those sites covered in the table, other significant counts in the first winter period were of 150, Southwold, February 9th; 203, East Lane, Bawdsey, January 9th; 125, Rushmere St Andrew, January 12th; 148, Elveden, March 20th and 170, Sudbury Common Lands, February 7th. Unseasonably high counts were of 142, Minsmere, June 24th and 186, Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick, August 15th. In the second winter period, additional three-figure counts included 130, Burgh Castle, November 22nd; 142, Sudbury, October 16th; 110, Gifford's Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland, October 11th and 200, Tendring Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland, November 30th. High counts from Livermere Lake, including 800, November 25th and 700, May 6th, largely comprised birds released for shooting. A total of 222 breeding pairs from 28 sites is an improvement on last year (207 pairs from 26 sites) and was helped be a much improved situation at Minsmere, where 114 pairs bred compared with 87 in 2011. Other important sites included the Sizewell Estate, which supported 17 pairs, Orfordness, 15 pairs and Hen Reedbeds, 13 pairs, although this number is down from a peak of 31 pairs in 2009. NORTHERN PINTAIL Anas acuta Fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant; a few oversummer. Amber list. Categories A and E. There was a welcome return to some high counts in January and February, thus bucking the national trend. The WeBS count on the Aide/Ore Estuary of 528, February 12th is the highest in the county since November 2006 and the highest at this site since January 2002. 52

Systematic List At North Warren the site Monthly counts from the key sites: record was broken for the Jan Feb Mar Oct Nov Dec second consecutive year with Blyth Estuary 190 162 0 0 164 29 a non-WeBS count of 377, North Warren* 338 377 138 120 226 February 17th. Alde/Ore Estuary 117 528 36 70 155 45 Deben Estuary 150 A maximum of seven 62 6 7 55 60 Orwell Estuar) HW 48 27 4 18 25 91 oversummered at two coastal Orwell Estuary LW 163 240 30 102 sites, but breeding was not 304 336 Stour Estuary 188 91 suspected. *monthly maxima HW = High Water LW = Low Water The following records were received from the west of the county:Lakenheath Fen/Washes: three, Jan 12th; four, Feb 25th; Sep 15th. Lackford Lakes: five, Jan 20th and 27th; nine, Feb 18th; two, Aug 26th; three, Dec 15th. Livermere Lake: Feb 26th; Dec 15th. Culford Park: Nov 2nd. Mickle Mere: three. Mar 15th; Dec 25th. Pakenham: Puttockshill, two, Mar 17th. Shelley: five, Nov 7th. Stoke-by-Nayland: Gifford's Hall, two, Mar 8th; 72, Nov 30th; 45, Dec 29th. Higham (near Hadleigh): 12, Jan 6th; four, Feb 24th; five, Nov 30th. Thorington Street: Reservoir, 20, Jan 6th; Dee 16th. Offshore passage, which included an unseasonable record in mid-July off Thorpeness, was logged as follows:Lowestoft: south, Jan 3rd; 25 south, Feb Ist; four north, Feb 4th; ten south in October. Kessingland: two south, Jan 29th and 3 Ist; seven south and six north in February; three south, Dec 25th. Southwold: six south, Jan 3Ist. Dunwich: eight south, Dec 13th. Thorpeness: two north and 29 south in January; four north and 12 south in February; north, July 16th; two south, Aug 29th; two south, Sep 24th; south, Oct 26th; 197 south in December, including 120 on 9th. Orfordness: 14 south, Dec 29th. Landguard: 25 south in January; two north and 89 south in February, including 84 south on 4th; two north, Apr 21 st; two north and 13 south in September; 40 south in October; 11 south in November; four north and 23 south in December. GARGANEY Anas querquedula Uncommon summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. A pair at Hazelwood Marshes on March 15th heralded a significant arrivai, with records from a further ten, predominantly coastal, sites before the end of the month. Sightings came from a further nine sites before mid-May, but only two sites, the RSPB reserves at Minsmere and Lakenheath Fen held birds into June. Breeding was possible at both sites, but not proved. The last was a singleton on the Deben Estuary WeBS count, October 14th. Brevdon: South Wall, male, Mar 2Ist. Burgh Castle: Marshes, two males, May Ist. Kessingland: Sewage Works, male, Mar 18th. North Cove: Castle Marsh, male, Apr 26th; two males, Apr 28th; male, Apr 29th to May Ist. Sotterley: Park, two pairs, Mar 31 st and Apr 1 st; pair, Apr 2nd; two pairs, Apr 5th; pair, Apr 7th to 1 Oth. Hen Reedbeds: male, Mar 27th. Walberswick: Tinker's Marshes, male, Mar 2Ist; pair, Apr 15th; male, May 7th and 27th; juvenile, Aug 1 Ith. Dingle Marshes: three (two males), Apr 8th. Minsmere: pair, Mar 29th; male, Mar 30th and Apr 6th; pair, Apr 9th to 12th and 20th; 1/2 regularly from May 3rd to Sep 25th, increasing to five, June 5th and 7th, four, May 8th, Aug 25th, 29th and 30th and three, May 5th, June 1 Ith and Aug 24th. 53

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 North Warren: male, Apr 10th.

Ilazelwood Marshes: pair, Mar 15th and 16th; three (two males), Mar 20th to 23rd; four (three males), Mar 24th and 25th; three, Mar 26th; two, Mar 27th. Snape: Abbey Farm, male, Mar 26th to Apr 3rd; two, July 29th; three, Aug 4th to 7th; Aug 13th; two, Aug 15th; three, Aug 21st. Boy ton: Marshes, male, Mar 25th and 27th; pair, Mar 31st and Apr 11th and 13 th; two males, May 11 th; three males, May 12th; male, May 13th; juvenile, Aug 15th and 20th and Sep 1 st and 3rd. Hollesley: Marshes, two, Apr 26th. Bawdsey: East Lane, male, Mar 22nd; two (one male), Apr 23rd. Deben Estuary: Oct 14th (WeBS count). Trimley Marshes: male, May 1st and 27th. Levington: Creek, male, July 21st. Cattawade Marshes: pair, Mar 23rd to Apr 1st. Lakenheath Fen/Washes: up to four, Apr 2nd to 28th; pair, May 16th; three males, May 18th; two males, May 20th. Cavenham: Heath, male, May 8th and 9th. Lackford Lakes: male, May 13th.

Stoke-by-Nayland: Gifford's Hall, Aug 26th. NORTHERN SHOVELER Anas clypeata Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Uncommon resident. Amber list. Monthly counts from the key sites: Jan Lowestoft Leathes Ham* 34 Minsmere* 190 North Warren* 96 Aide/Ore Estuary* 115 Orwell Estuary HW 43 Orwell Estuary L\V 42: Alton Water* 32 Livermere Lake*

*monthly maxima

Feb 53 41 181 170 10 5 54

Apr 4 69

Mar 10 73 161 70 25



35 21

40 -



20 16



y -: 32 HW =High Water

Sep 17 39

Oct 40 176 J5 72 18



18 34


Nov 35 226 85 153 22 36 8 106

Dec 60 154 104 144 56 48 56

LW =Low Water

Numbers were generally slightly down in both winter periods. For the third consecutive year the highest count came from Minsmere in November, a WeBS count of 226 on 18th. Indeed Minsmere held high numbers through most of the late summer, autumn and second winter period, with a WeBS count of 160, August 19th, a county record for this month, additional to those in the table. Elsewhere, other counts exceeding 30 were received f r o m : Oulton Broad: 80 flew east, Jan 29th. Farnham: Botany Marshes, 63, Dec 24th. Trimley Marshes: 37, Feb 4th; 43, Mar 3rd.

Lackford Lakes: 60, Oct 14th (WeBS count); 33, Nov 24th. Culford: Park, 37, Sep 17th; 43, Oct 14th. Mickle Mere: 35, Nov 17th; 45, Dec 30th. Great Barton: 40, Sep 2nd. Barton Mere: 32, Oct 12th.

Nationally Shoveler is a rare breeding species. The current UK breeding population stands at 1000 pairs, with numbers highest in East Anglia and Yorkshire. In Sulfolk, Minsmere has remained the principal site since the early 1960s and this status was further enhanced this year with an impressive total of 105 breeding pairs, comfortably surpassing the site record of 63 pairs in 2010. Elsewhere along the coast, North Warren supported three pairs and Hen Reedbeds, Dingle Marshes and Orfordness one pair each, while in the west of the county one pair bred successfully at Mickle Mere. 54

Systematic List RED-CRESTED POCHARD Netta rufìna Scarce winter visitor and passage migrant. Catégories A and E. The greatest likelihood is that ali records relate to escapees, with those at Minsmere in October, Trimley Marshes and Alton Water being the best candidates for Continental origin. Beccles: female, Feb 3rd and Mar 2nd. Minsmere: female, July 7th; female, Oct 3th to 25th. Weybread GP: female, Jan 16th. Snàpe: Abbey Farm, female, May 26th and 28th, June lOth and July lOth. Trimley Marshes: female, Nov 2Ist. Alton Water: female, Feb lOth; male, Oct 14th and Nov 1 Ith to 28th. Lakenheath Washes: male, Apr 28th. Lackford Lakes: female, Mar Ist, May 18th and June 9th to 20th; male, July 6th. COMMON POCHARD Aythya ferina Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Uncommon resident. Amber list. Catégories A and E. Monthly counts from the key sites: Feb Mar Sep Oct Nov Dee After the high counts Jan 0 8 18 5 of last year numbers were 26 Orwell Estuarv HW 54 5 — 16 38 back to the low levels that Orwell Estuarv LW 86 37 114 180 209 have been the norm since 47 151 3 45 Alton Water* 62 61 54 34 62 2006. This picture is 35 Lackford Lakes* HW = High Water LW = Low Water reflected nationally, •monthly maxima where coordinated counts are at their lowest for at least 50 years and approximately half of what they were 20 years ago. Although the precise reason for this decline is unclear, it may be linked at least in part to a changing climate. Ali other counts exceeding 30, which were more widespread than in recent years, were as follows:Oulton Broad: 80, Feb 8th. Havergate Island: 53, Feb 2nd. Trimley Marshes: 69, Jan 2nd; 71, Feb 26th.

Wherstead: River Orwell, 66, Feb 12th. Stutton: River Stour, 48, Feb 13th; 134, Dee Ist. Cavenham Pits: 89, Feb 25th.

The only confirmed breeding record involved a pair at a site in the west of the county raising a single duckling, while two coastal sites in the north-east held single territorial pairs. FERRUGINOUS DUCK Aythya nyroca Rare winter visitor and passage migrant. Minsmere: female, July 31 st to Aug 22nd (G Grieco, D Pearsons). An individuai has spent at least part of the last four Augusts at Minsmere and it seems fair to speculate that ali records involve the same returning female. TUFTED DUCK Aythya fuligula Common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Total numbers were below average in the first winter period, but improved in the second winter period. For the third consecutive year the maximum count at Alton Water exceeded

Monthly counts from the key sites: Jan Feb Mar 44 118 80 Aide/Ore Estuar} 69 2 Orwell Estuary HW 19 28 Orwell Estuarv LW 96 67 322 289 Alton Water* 121 102 Lackford Lakes* 64 87 Cavenham Pits* 61 HW =High Water •monthly maxima


Oct 10 23 -

133 282

Nov 41 38 45 424 211

Dee 0 26 51 407 168


LW =Low Water


Suffolk Birci Report 2012 400, and there were also unseasonably high counts from this site of 88, April 15th and 103, August 19th. At Lackford Lakes the WeBS count of 282 on October 14th is the highest there for six years, and additional good counts at this site included 70, May 27th, 116, July 22nd (WeBS count) and 187, September 30th. In addition to those in the table, the following counts of 50 and above were received and highlight more widespread numbers during a cold spell in the first half of February:Lowestoft: Leathes Ham, 120, Feb 12th. Oulton: Marshes, 50, Feb 12th. Oulton Broad: 112, Feb 9th. Weybread GP: 160, Feb 7th.

Minsmere: 59, Mar 11th (WeBS count); 52, May 20th (WeBS count). Aldringham: farm reservoir, 51, Feb 25th; 125, Sep 18th; 51, Oct 13th. Deben Estuary: 56, Feb 12th (WeBS count). Trimley St Martin: Loompit Lake, 70, Apr 8th; 80, Aug 10th. Stutton: River Stour, 114, Feb 13th. Lakenheath Fen: 90, Mar 11th (WeBS count). Livermere Lake: 72, Apr 20th. Thorington Street: Reservoir, 50, Apr 9th.

The breeding population appears stable with 79 pairs reported from 17 sites (75 pairs at 18 sites in 2011). The Sizewell Estate, Lackford Lakes and Thorington Street Reservoir each supported three pairs, but these numbers were dwarfed by those from Minsmere, where 53 pairs bred setting a new site record. Tufted Duck Aythya fuligula x Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca hybrid A male hybrid, presumed to be of this parentage, was at Leathes Ham, Lowestoft on February 12th. It occurred during a cold spell amongst a flock of 120 Tufted Ducks. Photographs of this individual can be seen at GREATER SCAUP Aythya murila Fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant. Red list. Following two very good years for this species, 2012 was very poor. There was a particularly weak showing during the first winter period with records from just two sites. Thorpeness: three south, Jan 2nd; four south, Jan 16th; 16 south, Feb 5th. Gedgrave: Marshes, Feb 9th. There were no records from March to July but two unseasonable individuals were seen in August; a male flew south off Corton on 11 th and a female or first-winter was present at Lound Waterworks on 26th. The second winter period was slightly more productive and did provide long-staying, well-watched birds at Benacre Broad. Lowestoft: Ness Point, two north, Oct 27th. Benacre Broad: two, Nov 2nd to 6th; three, Nov 8th to 13th; Nov 30th and Dec 8th; four (one male), Dec 11th to 21st. Thorpeness: five south, Dec 9th. Orfordness: male, Dec 1st. Stour Estuary: Nov 10th to 26th; eight, Dec 15th. COMMON EIDER Somateria moltissima Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Has bred. Amber list. During the first winter period a total of 50 was recorded from eight sites to mid-February, including 19 north off Lowestoft, January 14th and three on the low-water WeBS count on the Stour Estuary, January 16th. There was a single record in each of the next four months, with six south offKessingland, March 6th, two north off Southwold, April 24th, three south off Kessingland, May 25th and four south off Gorleston, June 5th. July records involved two off Southwold on 21st and one on 29th, and one on the sea off Pakefield on 25th. 56

Systematic List Autumn passage began with five south off Bawdsey, September Ist and peaked during northerly winds on October 27th and November 29th. All day-counts exceeding 20 are listed below:Lowestoft: Ness Point, 49 north and two on sea, Oct 27th. Kessingland: 23 north, Nov 29th. Southwold: 40 north, Oct 27th. Sizewell: 53 north, Nov 29th. LONG-TAILED DUCK Clangula hyemalis Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. It was another relatively poor year and, with nine individuals all in the second winter period, the third consecutive one that the annual total has failed to reach double figures. Lowestoft: Ness Point, north, Oct 27th. Kessingland: north, Nov 3rd. Walberswlck: north, Oct 27th; two, Nov 30th; north, Dec 2nd. Landguard: north, Nov 20th. Orwell Estuary: female ranging between Wherstead and Chelmondiston, Dec 13th to 30th. Stour Estuary: Stutton, Nov 18th to 29th. COMMON SCOTER Melanitta nigra Declining non-breeding resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Red list. Kessingland North South Thorpeness North South Landguard North South













83 35

26 22

22 1

89 7

95 12

79 105

28 174

12 78

86 114

259 139

346 668

289 171

7 99

92 35

0 1

22 0

62 17

40 216

79 341

14 224

35 105

192 693

145 35

53 175

J 20

5 28

1 9

12 3

43 21

11 3

75 71

22 74

67 135

76 157

51 262

16 51

Accumulated monthly totals from Kessingland (Paul Read), Thorpeness (Dave Thurlow) and Landguard Bird Observatory are shown in the table. The peak month offThorpeness was October, and included the highest day-count of the year of 477 (108 north and 369 south) on 26th, while off Kessingland and Landguard highest numbers were recorded in November. In addition, principal movements and congregations were well-monitored from other watch points along the whole length of the coastline. All significant counts are listed below:Gorleston: 107, Sep 24th; 180, Nov 18th. Hopton-on-Sea: 150 on sea, Oct 3Ist. Corton: 150 on sea, Nov 9th; 200 on sea, Nov 18th. Lowestoft: 90 north and 85 south, Oct lOth; 100 north, Nov lOth. Pakefield: 180 north, Nov 14th. Kessingland: 192 on sea, July 5th; 159 north and ten south, Oct 26th; 103 north, 32 south and three on sea, Nov 6th; five north and 114 south, Nov 26th. Southwold: 160 north, Oct 26th. Minsmere: 150 south, Oct 12th. Thorpeness: 43 north and 69 south, July 21 st; 103 south, Aug 12th; 195 south, Sep 23rd; 46 north and 186 south, Oct 25th; 108 north and 369 south, Oct 26th. Orfordness: 22 north and 122 south, Sep 23rd; 110 south, Dec Ist. Landguard: 27 north and 75 south, Sep 23rd; 23 north and 104 south, Oct 26th; 100 south, Nov 26th. Records from the estuaries included two on the Deben, January 15th and February 12th, while one was present on the Stour, January 16th, with three, April 8th and up to four, November lOth to 26th. Unexpected records involved singletons on Orfordness, August 57

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 12th, at Lake Lothing, Lowestoft, October 13th, at Hamilton Dock, Lowestoft, October 27th, and on a small pool along Ferry Road, Southwold, October 27th to 29th. There were no reports from west Suffolk this year. VELVET SCOTER Melanina fusca Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Numbers in the first winter period were above average and included records from the Aide and Orwell estuaries. Gorleston: male north, Jan 21st; south, Feb 18th. Pakefield: two on sea, Jan 22nd and 27th. Kessingland: north, Jan 25th and Feb 6th, 1 Ith and 20th. Minsmere: male on sea, Feb 26th. Thorpeness: south, Feb 22nd. Slaughden: Jan 30th. Orfordness: two south, Mar 4th. Sudbourne: River Aide, female / first-winter, Jan 18th; Feb 11 th. Felixstowe: two south, Feb 8th. Landguard: two north, Mar 6th. Wherstead: River Orwell, female, Feb 21st. None was recorded between March 6th and October 14th. All records in the second winter period are listed below, including a female on the Orwell Estuary in December:Gorleston: north, Dec 9th. Corton: Nov 18th.

Kessingland: north, Dec 18th. Southwold: two north, Oct 26th. Walberswick: seven on sea, Dec 8th. Thorpeness: two north, Oct 14th; four, Oct 26th; north, Dec 2nd; two south, Dec 16th. Aldeburgh: two, Nov 15th.

Landguard: two south, Oct 26th; south, Nov 19th; two south, Dec 13 th. River Orwell: female off Wherstead and Freston, Dec 16th to 27th.

C o m m o n Goldeneye Su


COMMON GOLDENEYE Bucephala clangula Fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. The Stour Estuary held high numbers in both winter periods. The low-water WeBS count of 257, February 14th is the highest in the county since January 2003 when 287 were present on the same estuary, while the low-water WeBS count of 110, Monthly counts from the key sites: November 21st is the highest Jan Nov Dec Feb Mar November count ever made in Benacre Broad* 8 1 12 5 the county. Aside from those in Aide/Ore Estuary 10 2 1 5 5 the table, the only other count to 27 Deben Estuary 2 3 1 9 reach double-figures was a non0 Orwell Estuary HW 2 3 0 3 WeBS count on the Orwell Orwell Estuary LW 27 12 0 8 Estuary of 16, December 17th. Alton Water* 11 7 10 18 15 The last record of the spring Stour Estuary 206 110 80 257 Lackford Lakes* 11 16 14 5 3 concerned one flying south off LW = Low Water •monthly maxima HW =High Water Thorpeness, April 30th. Unusually there were two July records, the first in this month since 2000, involving one south off Landguard on 13th and two on the Scrape at Minsmere on 21st. The next was at Lackford Lakes, August 26th this 58



individuai remaining at the site into the winter. Offshore passage in the second winter period began with two south off Ness Point, Lowestoft, October 8th and peaked with 13 south off Landguard, December 1 st. SMEW Mergellus albellus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. A major influx occurred in mid-February corresponding to a speli of very cold weather, with records from 27 sites between 6th and 17th (see Goosander). The peak count of 29 at Minsmere on 9th is the largest gathering in the county since 33 were at Alton Water in January 1985, and five on the Little Ouse River, Lakenheath equals the largest ever gathering in the west of the county. Birds soon dispersed once temperatures rose, and the only records after 21 st came from Minsmere, where the last of the first winter period was a redhead on March 20th. Burgh Castle: redhead, Feb 6th; five redheads, Feb 1 Ith. Bradwell: Doles Farm, redhead, Feb 1 Ith. Lowestoft: Leathes Ham, redhead, Feb lOth to 16th. Lound Waterworks: redhead, Feb 13th. Oulton Dyke: redhead, Feb 8th. Oulton Broad: redhead, Feb 1 Ith and 12th.

North Cove: River Waveney, three redheads, Feb 12thto 14th; two redheads, Feb 16th; redhead, Feb 18th. Homersfield GP: up to four redheads, Feb 7th to lOth; redhead, Feb 17th to 20th. Weybread GP: redhead, Feb 7th; up to two redheads, Feb 8th to 17th. Benacre Pit: redhead, Feb 7th; six redheads, Feb 1 Ith. Benacre Broad: three redheads, Feb lOth and 17th. Southwold: Boating Lake, redhead Feb 7th; 15 (four males), Feb 8th and 9th. Dingle Marshes: two, Feb 12th (WeBS count). Minsmere: male, Jan 8th to 14th; two (one male), Jan 15th to 25th; up to six, Jan 26th to 31st; min of four (one male) daily in February with max of 29 (seven males) on 9th; up to six (one male), Mar Ist to 9th and then redhead regularly until Mar 20th. Orfordness: River Aide, redhead, Feb 12th. Havergate Island: one or two, Feb 8th to lOth; six, Feb 12th; three, Feb 17th. Snape: Abbey Farm, two redheads, Feb 9th. Butley: River, Feb 9th. Bawdsey: East Lane, redhead, Feb 17th. Melton: two redheads, Feb 6th to 13th; redhead, Feb 17th. Felixstowe: two redheads north, Feb 8th. W herstead: River Orwell, redhead, Feb 12th. Alton Water: male, Jan 27th and 28th; daily Feb 8th to 21 st with max of six (one male), Feb 16th. Cattawade: River Stour, four redheads, Feb 8th to 12th; two redheads, Feb 13th; redhead, Feb 14th. Coddenham: Sharmford Mere, two (one male), Feb lOth. I-akenheath: Little Ouse River, five (three males), Feb lOth; redhead, Feb 1 Ith. Thetford: Little Ouse River, male, Feb 8th to lOth. The first of the second winter period were two redheads at Alton Water, November 27th and records came from a further four sites before the end of the year. Benacre Broad: male, Dec 1 Ith and 12th; redhead Dee 14th and 15th; two (one male), Dee 16th. Minsmere: two redheads, Dec 7th; redhead, Dec 17th and 22nd to 27th; two (one male), Dee 28th to 31 st. Bawdsey: River Deben, redhead, Dee 16th. Alton Water: two redheads, Nov 27th to Dec 2nd; up to four redheads. Dee 8th to 3Ist. Stutton: River Stour, Dec Ist. RED-BREASTED MERGANSER Mergus serrator Fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant. Maximum counts from the Orwell and Stour Estuaries, the main wintering sites, are summarized in the table. Numbers on the Stour Estuary were particularly impressive and the low-water WeBS count of 144, January 16th is the highest count since one of 169 on the 59

Suffolk Bird Report 2012 Orwell Estuary in March 1979. No other counts reached double-figures. Jan 15 144

Orwell Estuarv Stour Estuary

Feb 14 90

Mar 0 31

Nov 4 112

Dee 15 10

There were two records in April of three north off Thorpeness on 7th and two south off Landguard on 18th, and one record in May of one south off Landguard, 30th. There were no further records until September 30th, when a redhead flew south off Kessingland. This heralded the start of a light autumn passage, which peaked with 20 south off Landguard, November 19th. GOOSANDER Mergus merganser Locally fairly common winter visitor and passage


Jan 17

Feb 21

Mar 11

migrant. Oct 3

Nov 4

Dee 10

Maximum counts from the main wintering site at Lackford are summarized in the table. However, unexpectedly the highest counts of the year came from Weybread GP with 30, February 9th and 16th, the largest gatherings in the county for nine years. These high numbers corresponded with a major influx in mid-February resulting from a very cold speli of weather, with records from 28 sites between 6th and 19th (see Smew). Burgh Castle: 19, Feb 6th; four (two males), Feb 7th; two (one male), Feb 1 Ith. Corton: redhead on sea, Feb 6th. Gunton: three males north, Feb 19th. Lowestoft: Leathes Harn, redhead, Feb 25th to May 13th: Lake Lothing, two redheads, Feb 1 Ith. Lound Waterworks: male, Jan Ist.

Blundeston: prison !ake, redhead, Feb 13th. Flixton Decoy: five, Jan 1 st.

Oulton Broad: redhead, Jan 13th to Feb 23rd, increasing to three (two males), Feb 8th, two (one male), Feb 9th to 1 Ith and two, Feb 12th to 14th and 21st to 23rd. North Cove: River Waveney, two redheads, Feb 12th. Beccles: Quay, Feb 8th. Homersfield GP: three (one male), Feb 8th; redhead, Feb 17th and 18th; four redheads, Feb 19th. Weybread GP: male, Feb 2nd and 3rd; min of 11, Feb 9th to 17th, with max of 30 on 9th and 16th. St James South Elmham: two males, Mar 3rd.

Henham: redhead, Feb 18th. Farnham: Botany Marshes, Feb 9th. Dunwich: male in off the sea, Feb 7th. Minsmere: redhead, Jan 1 Ith to 16th and Feb 5th to 9th; two males, Feb 13th; male and redhead regularly Feb 18th to 26th. Thorpeness: two north and six south, Feb 6th; south, Feb 18th. Orfordness: south, Feb 4th. Deben Estuary: Feb 12th (WeBS count). Melton: fishing lakes, eight (seven males), Feb 13th. Felixstowe: King's Fleet, male, Feb 17th to 20th. Landguard: four south, Feb 19th. Trimley Marshes: Feb 25th and 26th. Alton Water: redhead regularly, Jan 2nd to 29th; up to two males and four redheads in February; two regularly in March until 12th. Shotley: River Stour, redhead. Mar 2nd. Stutton: River Stour, two, Feb 13th. Needham Market: Jan 3rd and 4th; two, Jan lOth; regularly Feb 7th to 21st, with max of ten on lOth. Bramford: Suffolk Water Park, Feb 9th. 60

Systematic List Lakenheath Fen: two redheads, Feb 12th. Thetford: Little Ouse River, two, Feb 13th. West Stow: Country Park, ten, Jan 6th; four, Jan 9th; eight, Jan 10th; six, Mar 1st and 6th. Cavenham Pits: four, Jan 9th. Great Cornard: male, Jan 16th; 14, Feb 7th. Higham (near Hadleigh): redhead Jan 6th.

Navland: redhead, Feb 9th. After a gap of two years, a pair bred in the Thetford area for the fifth time in seven years. A female with a brood of ten was seen along the Little Ouse River, April 24th, but unfortunately only one duckling survived into May and it was thought that this youngster subsequently died. In addition, the long-staying redhead in the Lowestoft area was back at Oulton Broad on May 24th and remained until at least July 26th. The first of the autumn returned to Lackford on October 11th and aside from this site records in the second winter period were received from:Lowestoft: Lake Lothing, redhead, Oct 23rd. Benacre Broad: two (one male), Nov 28th. Covehithe Broad: redhead, Dec 12th.

Minsmere: redhead, Nov 4th; male, Dec 2nd 3rd and 24th. Thorpeness: three south, Nov 1st. Slaughden: River Aide, two redheads, Nov 14th. Hollesley: Marshes, Nov 8th. Landguard: two south, Nov 29th; eight south, Dec 31st. Alton Water: Nov 24th and 28th; up to three males and two redheads in December. Lakenheath Fen: Oct 28th; four, Nov 11th; two, Dec 8th. West Stow: Country Park, nine (six males), Dec 18th. Livermere Lake: Dec 2nd.

Haverhill: Nov 25th. Thorington Street: Nov 7th.

RUDDY DUCK Oxyura jamaicensis Rapidly declining, winter visitor and passage migrant. Categories C and E. A female or first-winter was present at Lackford Lakes from November 4th to 10th, the first record in the county since one at the same site in October 2010. The UK population was estimated at 60 individuals in April 2012 and, nationally, culling continues under the auspices of the Defra eradication programme, which aims for complete eradication by 2015. RED-LEGGED PARTRIDGE Alectoris rufa Common resident; numbers augmented by releases. Categories C and E. With reports received from 50 sites in the County, this widespread species continues to be under-recorded. A mere four records of confirmed breeding were submitted. The more isolated coastal populations at Orfordness and Landguard have just about maintained a foothold. One or two birds were recorded on several dates on Orfordness, then a pair with a youngster was seen during September, whilst at Landguard four birds were recorded early in the year but these had reduced to two by October. GREY PARTRIDGE Perdix perdix Formerly common resident, now localised. Red List. Categories A, C and E. A slight increase in records from 78 in 2011 to 91 in 2012, but reported from 44 sites, four fewer than previously. Probable or possible breeding was reported from only four locations, as shown:Knettishall: Knettishall Airfield, pair on territory, breeding probable, May 12th. Culford: pair on territory, breeding possible, May 15th. Great Barton: pair on territory, breeding possible, May 6th. Fornham St Martin: Hall Farm, one on possible breeding territory, May 6th. 61

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 COMMON QUAIL Coturnix coturnix Scarce summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber List. Only six reports were received from four locations, one of which was a possible breeding record. Lakenheath Fen RSPB: adult flushed at Joist Fen, Aug 14th (K Puttick). Bardwell: Bowbeck, male calling, July 13th and 14th (Birdtrack). Pakenham: Puttockshill, male calling on several occasions, breeding possible, July 3rd to 23rd (Breckland Birding Group, M Peers, M Wright). Hawkedon: adult observed on a road early a.m., Sep 23rd (M Ferris). COMMON PHEASANT Phasianus colchicus Very common resident; numbers augmented by releases. CatĂŠgories C and E. Over 700 records of this extremely common species were submitted from 124 sites giving a clear indication of its widespread distribution. Evidence of breeding however was reported on only four occasions. GOLDEN PHEASANT Chrysolophus pictus Scarce resident. CatĂŠgories C and E. Four reports relating to, at most, five birds, were received from just two sites, one in the west of the county and the other at Sudbourne in the south-east. All records relate to adult birds in the early part of the year and no evidence of breeding was forthcoming. RED-THROATED DIVER Gavia stellata Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. With the Suffolk day-count record being smashed on the last day of 2011, it was hardly surprising that there were stili large numbers present in the first few days of 2012. No count approached 201 l ' s record-breaker of a total - 5642 south and 27 north off Thorpeness counted by David Thurlow - but he was persevering again on his favourite cliff-top perch on January Ist, recording 1271 north and 281 south. He did even better on January 2nd, logging a year's best total for the county of 2358 with 2115 heading south and the rest moving north. These large numbers were not replicated further south, however. As is so often the case with this species, the south-east recording area was very much in the shadow of its northeastern counterpart and its maximum counts in this period, and indeed for the whole year, were the 731 moving north off Orfordness on January Ist and the 145 north and 22 south, off Landguard on the same day. Peak day-counts for selected months in the north-east recording area, with the dates on which the observations were made, were:Jan 2358 2nd

Feb 1459 6th

Mar 344 14th

Apr 82 2nd

Sep 50 23rd

Oct 41 8th

Nov 55 2nd

Dee 1306 9th

The species returned to its rarity status in May, June and July after previous years in which more than might be expected were recorded in these months. In the north-east recording area a total of 18 was reported in May, four in June and two in July, with the area's first two returning birds being noted off Kessingland on September 2nd. In the south-east recording area none was reported after May7th until September 23rd, when five were noted off East Lane, Bawdsey. BLACK-THROATED DIVER Gavia arctica Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Bearing in mind the likelihood of a certain amount of duplication in the records received, 62

Systematic List it is possible that the reports involved just over 50 birds - broadly similar to the total of about 60 for 2011 and 2010's 46 and well below the approximation of 80 in 2008 and 2009. But, and in some observers' minds it is a very big 'but', it must be remembered that a great deal of controversy stili exists over this species' true status in Suffolk. Note from SORC This species is currently the subject of an ID/reporting review by the committee along with a sériés of others. Black-throated Diver is notoriously trieky to ID/separate from Red-throated under certain conditions. Observers/birders are requested to exercise caution when claiming a Black-throated Diver when seen as a distant bird on the sea/fly-by in any plumage but particularly a bird in summer plumage when viewing into the sun. In such conditions the red throat of the commoner species may appear black! Currently Blackthroated Diver is a category 3 species, ie. a species that may require supporting notes, and it would be good practice if we ail supplied a brief note to support our ID from any seawatch. Multi-observer records of birds seen on rivers/lakes etc. under favourable conditions would not require them. Diver identification is covered superbly by the latest Collins Bird Guide. SORC. With that serious caveat, the following table shows the monthly totals of records submitted of this species being seen on seawatches:North-east South-east

Jan 5 6

Feb Mar 3 11 0 0

Apr May 1 5 6* 0

Sep 3 0

Oct 2 0

Nov Dee 2 7 1 0

In addition, a non-controversial bird was watched by many observers in Lake Lothing, where it had first been noted on December 24th, 2011. It remained in the locality until February 9th. Other individuals were reported from Loompit Lake, Trimley St Martin, on October 15th and Stutton on February 12th. The asterisked figure in the above table relates to a report of six being seen off Landguard on Aprii 8th. GREAT NORTHERN DIVER Cavia immer Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Perhaps the most eye-catching of ali the records received involved a moulting adult on the Little Ouse at Lakenheath Fen on November 17th and 18th. The species is a rarity indeed in the county's western recording area. This was the first in the north-west of Suffolk since 1965 when one was at Eriswell on the Cut-off Channel, Aprii lst to 5th. It is also the first record away from the coast or Alton Water since 2008 when a juvenile was on Weybread GP, December 8th to 17th. It was actually also something of a rarity along the coast in the first winter period. Only three were reported in the north-east recording area in January two at Slaughden on 6th and one off Thorpeness on 8th. In the south-east recording area during this period the only reports came from Landguard, where singles, or perhaps the same individuai, were seen on January 2nd, 4th, 6th, 7th and 14th, and from various points along the River Orwell from lst until 12th also in January. The relative dearth of records continued for much of the year and it was not until May that subséquent reports were received, with singles moving north off Kessingland on 20th and a handsome full summer-plumaged individuai moving south close inshore off Minsmere the following day. The first autumn passage birds were noted in September - one north off Kessingland on 21 st and a moulting adult on the sea off Thorpeness on 28th. After a singleton off Thorpeness on October 9th, the first of a total of three singletons noted from the site during the month, 63

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 there was a distinct movement off Landguard on 12th when a site-record-equalling seven were noted. An additional individual flew north off Kessingland, October 31 st. One flying south over Minsmere Scrape, November 19th, was something of a surprise. Reports from Corton Cliffs and Kessingland on November 30th may have related to the same bird and singles were off Minsmere and Thorpeness on December 4th and 16th respectively. It seems likely that, subsequently, there were two long-staying individuals in the south of the county, with one off Stutton Mill from October 15th to at least November 26th and a well-watched and wide-ranging juvenile on the River Orwell from October 27th to the year's end, it being joined by a second bird on December 26th at least. In addition, singles were off Shingle Street on November 24th and Landguard on November 29th. At the other end of the county, one took up residence in Lowestoft's Hamilton Dock from December 28th until the year's end at least. NORTH ERN FULMAR Fulmarus glarialis Occasional summer visitor and declining passage migrant. Formerly bred. Amber list. The recent trend for April, May and September to be the months in which the highest numbers of this species are encountered was broadly continued, although in 2012 January, June, August and October featured more strongly than may have been expected. But do not be in any doubt - this species' fortunes are on the wane. An illustration of how steep the decline is can be obtained by looking back to Suffolk Birds' systematic list for 2005. It says that in 2001 the total number recorded (albeit with much duplication a probability) was an "impressive" 6019. In 2002, it was 2285, in 2003 it was 2853, in 2004 it was 1435 and in 2005 it was 1034. The species account adds: "Time will tell if this is nothing more than vagaries in weather conditions and/or observer coverage." It would appear that our worst fears are being borne out. The table below shows the combined totals for the north-east and south-east recording areas throughout the year and it can be seen that in only one month did they rise into three figures. That was September when the bulk of the birds were recorded on just one day, the 23rd, when the weather conditions conspired to get the seawatchers out and the seabirds on the move. The monthly totals were:Jan 65

Feb 16

Mar 12

Apr 93

Mav 62

Jun 61

Jul 9

Aug 45

Sep 223

Oct 25

Nov 0

Dec 1

Noteworthy totals amassed on September 23rd included 47 north off Ness Point, Lowestoft, (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards) and 118 north off Thorpeness (D Thurlow). Three reports of 'blue' morph individuáis were received, although the first two -singles off Minsmere (JH Grant) and Orfordness (Orfordness recorders) on January lst - may well have related to the same bird. The third was off Ness Point, Lowestoft, on the 'big day' that was September 23rd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). At Landguard, where observers remarked that it had been a "very poor" year for Northern Fulmar in general, máximum counts were a mere three north and three south on April 25th and four north and two south on June 8th. CORY'S SHEARWATER Calonectris diomedea Rare passage migrant. When the wind moved from being a south-westerly to a brisk easterly overnight, earlyrising seawatchers were out in forcé along the Suffolk coast on September 23rd. While the events that unfolded were not quite in the same league as the memorable seawatch of September 16th the year before, there was certainly some action and this species was among the chief prizes. The day was the only one of the year on which it was recorded. All the records are listed below - the twos obviously referring to the same individuáis:


Systematic List Southwold: two north, 08:05 (G Grieco, A Gooding). Sizewell: two north, 07:58hrs (S Abbott), north, 08:40hrs(S Abbott), north, 13:20hrs (S Abbott, D Pearsons). Thorpeness: two north, 07:53hrs (S Mayson). SOOTY SHEARWATER Puffinus griseus Uncommon passage migrant. The year's first encounter with this thrilling tubenose came on the relatively early date of June 23rd when a singleton sped north off Thorpeness. The final sighting came on October 27th when another did likewise off Southwold, with what was possibly the same bird also being noted off Gorleston Pier on the same date. The highest day-count of the year was 15 heading north off Thorpeness on the year's Great best seawatching day, September 23rd, when Shearwater Su Gough nine were also noted at Ness Point, Lowestoft, and seven off Kessingland - there inevitably being some duplication among the sightings. The same caveat applies to the following accumulated monthly totals : Jun 1

Jul 2

Aug 6

Sep 55

Oct 27

MANX SHEARWATER Puffinus puffinus Uncommon passage migrant. Amber list. In 2012 there was almost a return to the rarity status bestowed on this species in the distant days before the rise of seawatching, with precious few records and just a one-day 'spike' on September 23rd. Even on that date, the seawatchers' maximum count was a rather unimpressive six, off Ness Point, Lowestoft. The first of the year was a singleton flying south off Landguard on April 18th. The next to be logged was an individual off Kessingland on June 6th and the final sighting was made at Dunwich on October 31st. The only eye-catching report in the records received concerned a juvenile that was released at Landguard after having been found stranded on Felixstowe Docks on September 9th (J Zantboer). EUROPEAN STORM-PETREL Hydrobatespelagicus For the fourth year running there were no reported sightings of Storm-petrel off the Suffolk coast. LEACH'S STORM-PETREL Oceanodroma leucorhoa Scarce passage migrant. Amber list. There was a good showing for this sought-after oceanic wanderer but its appearances were almost entirely condensed into just two days. On the 'big day' of September 23rd, when this was one of the chief prizes on offer, observers had to brave some stormy conditions to be in with a chance of a sighting but on the calmer following day some storm-driven Leach's could be seen re-orientating along the Suffolk coast. Only two, or it may have been a single bird, other individuals was reported outside this brief flurry.


Suffolk Birci Report 2012 All the reports received are listed below and, clearly, they contain much duplication:Gorleston Pier: north, Sep 23rd (R Fairhead). Lowestoft: Ness Point, four north, Sep 23rd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Kessingland: four north, Sep 23rd (P Read), north, Sep 24th (P Read). Covehithe: three north, Sept 23rd (R Waiden), north, Sep 24th (T Butler). Southwold: four north, Sep 23rd (G Grieco et al), north, Sep 24th (L Townsend). Sizewell: north, Sep 23rd (JA Rowlands). Thorpeness: two north, one south, Sep 23rd (D Thurlow), north, Sep 24th (D Thurlow). Orfordness: four north, Sep 23rd (D Crawshaw, M Marsh). Bawdsey: East Lane, two Sep 23rd (E Marsh, N Mason). Landguard: one north, two south, Sep 23rd (PJ Holmes, P Oldfield, N Odin et al); one north, one south, Dec 14th (WJ Brame, N Odin). NORTHERN GANNET Morus bassanus Common passage migrant. Amber list. A prolonged seawatch on October 8th by the indefatigable David Thurlow in a brisk southeasterly on the Thorpeness cliff-top produced a day-count that dwarfed all others during the year, and a good many other years as well. In all 2320 individuals were logged, all but 191 of them moving south. Not only must this have been an impressive spectacle, it was also an impressive feat of endurance and diligence by the observer! The table below records the accumulated monthly totals and the highest day-counts received, excluding records from Orfordness, which are treated separately. As always, it should be borne in mind that much duplication is hidden within the data, but some idea of the temporal spread of reports can be ascertained:Combined areas Peak day

Jan 542 222

Feb 2534 1295

Mar 1700 337

Apr 451 84

May 306 50

Jun 1031 159

Jul 646 122

Aug 559 200

Sep 1637 472

Oct 5862 2320

Nov 1007 265

Dec 190 23

Oct 44 222

Nov 60 5

Dec 1 3

In addition, Orfordness observers submitted the following table:North South

Jan 70 10

Feb 761 0

Mar 355 20

Apr 23 .5

Mav 3 0

Jun 2 48

Jul 5 6

Aug 11 20

Sep 49 247

The tables indicate that the movement through the North Sea to breeding sites to the north of Suffolk appears to have begun earlier in 2012 than in recent times - it was apparent in February whereas it has often not been noted until March in previous years. Summer feeding concentrations were again noted, as were the expected post-breeding southerly surges that were especially noticeable in September, October and November. GREAT CORMORANT Phalacrocorax carbo Common winter visitor and passage migrant: has nested since 1998. The county record numbers reached in 2011 - 727 at Fritton Decoy on January 29th, topped on February 21st by the 787 at the RSPB's Havergate Island - were not matched in 2012. However, the roost at Fritton probably accounted for most if not all of the birds involved in the following monthly maxima from the Kessingland, Lowestoft, Gorleston and Waveney Forest areas:Jan 190

Feb 383

Mar 433

Apr 210

Sep 111

Oct -

Nov 211

Dec 315

The highest total of the year was logged by Suffolk's Great Cormorant counter-in-chief Robin Biddle who recorded 600 flying over the Old Kirton Road, Trimley St Martin, area 66

Systematic List near the breeding and roosting site of Loompit Lake, on December 5th. Robin reported that this was a new record count for the Loompit area and was followed by c.450 at the lake on December 10th and c.350 there on December 19th. He also made other impressive counts in the area at other times during the year, including 200 on each of the dates February 7th, November 13th and November 23rd, and 400 on November 27th, 28th and 30th. The RSPB's Havergate Island and Hollesley Marshes reserves continued their recent run of significant gatherings. The former site held 503 on March 11th, with 280 on April 16th and 176 on November 18th. The latter site's highest counts were 290 on January 10th and 300 on January 19th. On Orfordness, where the peak gatherings were 205 on February 26th and 215 on December 1 st, observers submitted the following peak monthly counts:Jan
















The west recording area's highest count of the year was 65 at the Suffolk Wildlife Trust's Lackford Lakes reserve on December 2nd. A note from Robin Biddle regarding Loompit Lake's tree-nesting Great Cormorants' breeding numbers in 2011 illustrates this observer's meticulous approach to recording. He has revised his total for the number of nests at the site in 2011 from a previously reported 95 - he says there were actually only 94. As far as 2012 was concerned he reports a total of 112 nests and estimates a success rate of two young per nest. In 2010 the number of nests at the site was reported to have been 113, with a total of 123 in 2009. EUROPEAN SHAG Phalacrocorax aristotelis Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. The Lake Lothing area of Lowestoft, together with the town's Hamilton Dock and harbour, maintained their position as the county's major site for this species. Up to six were seen here throughout January, with up to four on several dates in February, up to two in March and one on April 16th. In recent years, rather surprisingly, the species has been encountered during mid-summer and so it proved in 2012, with a singleton at Lake Lothing on July 24th. This favoured area again attracted a "very pale individual that was first seen in the previous winter" from August 27th until October 22nd. On September 9th it was joined by a second bird. Up to three were seen in the Lowestoft area in October, November's peak here was just two on 18th but this had built up in December to the month's peak of five on 18th. Elsewhere in the north-east recording area singles were noted off Dunwich Cliffs, February 16th, Kessingland, March 12th, Gorleston Pier, October 27th, and Southwold, December 2nd. One was found dead on the cliff-top at Covehithe on October 31st. The only record from Orfordness referred to one flying south on October 11th. In the south-east recording area, singles were seen in Ipswich Docks, January 12th, January 29th and December 28th and in the Stour off Harkstead, November 10th. In addition, singles were noted off Landguard on February 4th, September 29th and October 16th, 18th and 29th. 67

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 GREAT BITTERN Botaurus stellaris Slowly increasing breeding population, scarce resident, passage migrant and winter visitor. Red list. The Suffolk coast's significance in a UK context for this stealthy reedbed inhabitant can be seen in statistics for 2012 produced jointly by the RSPB and Natural England. Their report establishes that in the UK. as a whole there was a slight increase in the number of booming males in 2012, with a minimum of 106 recorded at 53 sites, compared with 104 at 51 sites in 2011. It points out that it Great Bittern Richard Allen was not possible to cover all sites for any nesting activity in 2012, although there were fewer nesting attempts at some well-monitored sites in 2012 compared with 2011. "This is not surprising, given the wet conditions across much of England during the nesting period last year," it says. In all, 44 to 53 nests were monitored in 2012, at 20 to 23 sites. The tables below show the minimum number of booming males recorded in the UK since 1998 and the minimum number of occupied sites involved each year. Below them in each table is the maximum figure for each year, shown in parenthesis. The équivalent figures for the Suffolk coast are then shown, emphasising this area's crucial importance:-

UK males

1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 13 19 22 30 31 43 82 87 104 106 51 75 55 46 44 (18) (22) (28) (33) (37) (52) (65) (54) (63) (63) (87) (100) (106) (128)(129)

L'K sites

1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 9 11 14 18 20 24 43 47 31 28 27 33 41 51 53 (12) (14) (16) (18) (23) (29) (33) (30) (35) (40) (47) (55) (58) (63) (65) 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012

Suffolk coast sites

4 (6)

8 10 15 - (13) (27)

20 24 14 18 19 20 20 (19) (19) (20) (24) (29) (25) (27)

28 26 25 25 (31) (29) (30) (27)

At RSPB Minsmere there were ten booming males with four nests confirmed - ail were said to be "successfuF' - although there could have been up to six. Another coastal site held at least six booming males and a maximum of seven nests and a third site held at least three boomers and up to three nests. A fourth site held one boomer and up to two nests. The success of the reedbed création at RSPB Lakenheath Fen should never be forgotten and this site is now firmly established as a breeding location for the species. Grunting, the precursor to booming, was heard here from March 15th with full-blown booming commencing on April 8th. Six booming males were noted on the reserve and four nests were confirmed, although only one was thought to have been successful. The expected sprinkling of records from non-breeding areas included a rather curious sighting from Melton on February 9th concerning an individuai that the surprised observer (G Grieco) reported "flew over The Street from the Melton Park area and down Station Road." LITTLE EGRET Egretta garzetta Locally common and increasing resident and passage migrant. Amber list. This speçies' colonisation of Suffolk continues apace and an indication of its géographie spread across the county cornes with our west recording area's first confirmed breeding 68

Systematic List record. The site concerned is best left un-named for the time being but up to two active nests were discovered in a heronry on May 29th. In addition, breeding was "suspected" at two other sites in the west. The recording area's peak counts for the year were 20 at the RSPB's Lakenheath Fen nature reserve on September 15th and 15 at Gifford's Hall, Stoke-byNayland, August 27th. Only five nests were reported from the regular breeding site at Hen Reedbeds, which was well down on the 14 nesting pairs noted in the previous year, six pairs were at Stutton and no other breeding records were received. Given the surging numbers now being reported across the county throughout the year - for example a total of 369 records was submitted from our south-east recording area alone - it is more than likely that breeding is taking place on a much wider scale than the reports would suggest. Data from Landguard Bird Observatory offer a snapshot of the species' migratory movements. A total of 12 was noted there between April 13th and June 15th, with a maximum of five south on June 5th. Between July 19th and September 1st a total of 24 was noted, with a maximum on eight north on July 29th. Nine were noted between October 12th and November 7th, with a maximum of five south on October 14th. Post-breeding dispersal no doubt accounted for RSPB Minsmere's site-record count of 73 on July 24th and the year's largest single-group count of birds on the move - the party of eight moving north off Landguard five days later. The count of "30-plus" at the Suffolk Wildlife Trust's Trimley Marshes reserve on August 13th was said to be the site's largest gathering "for six or seven years". The pattern of post-breeding dispersal delivering peak numbers in late summer is also shown in the table below relating to monthly maxima submitted by observers on Orfordness:Jan 6

Feb 6

Mar 5

Apr 6

May 9

Jun 15

Jul 17

Aug 28

Sep 12

Oct 9

Nov 17

Dec 11

The noteworthy winter gatherings at Alton Water referred to in Suffolk Birds 2011 were well and truly eclipsed. In 2011 there were 53 at the site on November 13th and 73 on December 27th. In 2012 there were 106 there on November 18th and 122 on December 16th - surely clear signs that the fortunes of this species in the county are certainly on the up. GREAT (WHITE) EGRET Ardea alba Rare, but increasing, visitor. Although there were no multiple sightings in 2012, in contrast with the previous year, the records submitted indicate that this species continues to be encountered across a broad geographical spread of the county. It can also perhaps be expected at any time of the year. Several members of the heron family that were previously considered major rarities in the UK are now far-more-regular visitors and some of them, indeed, are gaining a foothold as British breeders, probably in relation to climate change. This particular species is frequently tipped as a county breeder and we wait with fingers crossed. All authenticated records received are listed below:Burgh Castle: May 29th (JM Gaskell); Nov 12th (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Oulton Marshes: south, Feb 23rd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Lowestoft: north-east. May 31st (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards).

Great White Egret Mark


Suffolk Birci Report 2012 Kessingland: Heritage Green, then ENE over village, Dec 17th (D Borderick). Minsmere: Levels, Feb 24th to Mar 6th (MJ Thompson eta.Iy, in off sea, Oct 12th (JH Grant, P Green); Island Mere, Dec 3rd (M Forbes). Thorpeness: Feb 19th (B and M Hart); North Warren, Dec 26th (DF Walsh). Orfordness: King's Marshes, Oct 13th to 25th (D Crawshaw, M Marsh el ai). Alton Water: Dec 8th to 24th (multi-observers). Dalham: Dec 19th (J Owen). Lakenheath Fen: Apr 10th (RSPB). GREY HERON Ardea cinerea Common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Breeding records were received from a total of ten sites with a minimum of 31 nests being recorded. Although this represents an increase of three over the previous year in terms of the number of sites at which breeding was at least suspected, it is still probably a fair way short of being a complete picture. Evidence of migration came from the following observations: a single flew in off the sea at Gorleston Pier on September 11th, at Lowestoft, three flew south off Ness Point on September 24th, at Kessingland, two flew north-east out to sea at dusk on March 18th, a single flew south on July 3rd and two flew north on July 6th, at Minsmere one flew in off the sea on October 12th, at Thorpeness one flew north on July 15th and at East Lane, Bawdsey two flew in off the sea on September 3rd. In addition, spring movement, involving just a handful of birds, was noted at Landguard on a total of eight dates between March 5th and June 18th and autumn movement, involving a total of 12 birds was noted between July 4th and October 21st. Observers at Orfordness reported that the species was seen "on most visits" but in "smaller numbers" than Little Egret. One was seen to fly from the site's former airfield carrying a live weasel - the observers remarked that this was "a rather dangerous prey item!" (see Suffolk Birds 1991: 145 for details of a Grey Heron in flight whilst carrying a Stoat in ermine). The site's monthly maxima were:Jan 3

Feb 4

Mar 2

Apr 2

May 3

Jun 3

Jul 4

Aug 8

Sep 6

Oct 3

Nov 4

Dec 2

A sad report came from St James South Elmham. It concerned a first-winter individual that was recorded on February 3rd as a road fatality and was noted by the finder (R Parfitt) to be in a "terribly thin condition". PURPLE HERON Ardea purpurea Scarce passage migrant. Suffolk Birds 2011 remarked that 2011 was the third successive year the species had failed to appear in encouraging numbers. With none accepted in 2012 it appears that the dearth of records really has set in. Considering recent high hopes that this species might soon be breeding in the county, such a pattern is especially disappointing. 2011 Addition BLACK STORK Ciconia nigra Lowestoft: Lake Lothing, Apr 4th (R Connor, A Easton, R Murray). WHITE STORK Ciconia ciconia Very rare passage migrant. A curious run of records emerged from the west of the county but, as is so often the case with this species, it is impossible to know how many individuals were involved or if any of them were genuine wild stragglers. At least one was tainted by its tameness and the presence of plastic leg rings! 70

Systematic List The group of four on May 28th at Lakenheath is the largest ever recorded in Suffolk. However, the filli sequence of records, listed in chronological rather than geographical order, is as follows: Elveden: Aprii 25th, two photographed on private area of the Elveden Estate (observer unknown). Felsham: May 9th, ringed bird roosted overnight on building (observer unknown). Sudbury: May lOth, ringed bird on house roof in Bulmer Street, same as above (P Rowe). Lakenheath: May 24th, "tame bird with plastic leg rings on cricket pitch", (D White). Lakenheath Fen: north, May 24th (CAE Kirtland); four in flight, May 28th (G Bowman, D White). GLOSSY IBIS Plegadis falcinellus Rare but increasing visitor. With some probable duplication, ali the records accepted by BBRC are listed below. Although not a bumper year by recent standards, it is as well to remember this species' former status as a much-less-frequently encountered Suffolk rarity. Burgh Castle: four, circling over marshes, Mar 3rd (R Fairhead) the largest group in Suffolk since 1906. Glossy Ibis Mark Ferris Southwold: July 16th (J Mountain). Minsmere and Eastbridge: Feb 23rd to Apr 13th (M Muttitt et al.). Minsmere: two, May 29th to June 14th and one June 15th to July 15th (D Fairhurst, et al.); Aug 13th (I Salkeld, per A Green). Thorpeness: North Marsh, North Warren; two, May 29th (D Thurlow). EURASIAN SPOONBILL Platalea leucorodia Uncommonpassage migrant. Now increasingly Oversummers. Has overwintered. Amber list. A noteworthy run of records in January commenced on 9th with three on Havergate Island. These were also reported on 11 th and increased to four on 15th. Elsewhere during the month singles were noted on the south shore of Breydon Water on 1 Ith and it or another flew over the nearby Waveney Forest on 26th. The Havergate birds probably accounted for the singles reported from nearby Orfordness on 1 Oth and 15th, and the three seen there on 28th. Monthly maxima from the county's three main sites for the species, with undoubtedly much interchange between the locations, were as follows: Minsmere Orfordness Havergate

Jan 1 3 4

Feb Mar 0 1 3 4 3 3

Apr 3 4

May Jun Jul Aug Sep 1 2 7 7 7 5 4 6 8 13 17 4 8 11 16 17

Oct 0 0

Nov Dec 0 0 4 0 0 0 0

There was no reference in the reports received of any hint of social interaction and, while the species continues to breed in north Norfolk, we are still waiting for the patter of tiny Spoonbill feet in Suffolk. LITTLE GREBE Tachybaptus ruficollis Locally common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. The comments in Suffolk Birds 2011 referring to the under-recording of this diminutive grebe as a breeding species in the county appear to have gone unheeded. Breeding was reported as confirmed or probable from a minimum of a mere 12 sites, involving 35 pairs - the ĂŠquivalent figures for 2011 were 18 sites and 40 pairs. RSPB Minsmere's return of 21 pairs dwarfed ail others. Disappointingly, breeding was not suspected at Orfordness, where 71

Suffolk Bird Report 2012 nesting had been confirmed for the first time in 2011. The two most significant estuaries for this species are the Deben and the Orwell and the following table prĂŠsents WeBS counts and additional data from them: Jan 42 29

Deben Orwell

Feb 42 19

Mar 20

Apr 8

Sep 9 -


Oct 46 13

Nov 73 42

Dee 46 37

Observers at Orfordness submitted the following table of monthly maxima, with the comment that although the totals were similar to those in 2011 the species was present "in much smaller numbers than lOyears ago": Jan 12

Reb 16

Mar 4

WeBS counts on the Stour Estuary produced the following data: January 37, February 40, November 15 and December 26. In addition, the highest counts received from elsewhere were: 22 on an agricultural reservoir at Aldringham Walks on September 8th, 15 at Martlesham on October 6th, 14 at Alton Water on November 18th and 25 there on December 16th, 13 at Thorington Street Reservoir, October 21 st, 20 at Sudbury, February 7th and 14 at Fornham St Martin, September I

Apr 1

Sep 15

Oct 7

Nov 8

Little Grebe Richard

Dee 12


GREAT CRESTED GREBE Podiceps cristatus Locally common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. A serious lack of data submitted by observers prevents any meaningful estimate of breeding numbers being offered - the pitifully-low tally of eight pairs at a total of seven sites is surely a far-from-complete picture. Ominously, however, observers at RSPB Lakenheath Fen noted that the reserve's total of up to three nests were ail "washed away by high river levels" so perhaps the wet weather meant that the county's breeding total was especially low. The year's highest count was 200+ in Holbrook Bay on January 16th, a noteworthy total hearing in mind that most of the county's largest winter gatherings are traditionally reported on the open sea. More conventional was the count of 146 off Thorpeness on January 6th and that of 76 at Alton Water on January 22nd. These represented the peaks of what was a meagre period for the species in the county. Generally low counts were also submitted for the second winter period, the peak coastal total being 54 off Thorpeness on December 1 st. Alton Water fared a little better, with monthly maxima of 80 on August 19th, 88 on September 16th, 112 on October 14th, 97 on November 18th and 172 on December 16th. RED-NECKED GREBE Podiceps grisegena Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. A series of reports from Lower Holbrook, Stutton Mili and Alton Water covering the period January Ist to April 29th possibly related to one long-staying individuai. The same could be said for a shorter run of records off Thorpeness from February lOth to 18th. The

Systematic List only other report from the first winter period concerned an individual off Gorleston Pier (Lounge Lizards) on January 7th. June is not a month usually associated with this species in Suffolk so the singleton off Pakefield on 13th (Lounge Lizards) must have surprised its observers somewhat. This is the first June record in Suffolk since 1996 when one in breeding plumage was on Livermere Lake, 22nd. More conventionally, one flew north off Thorpeness on September 24th and another did likewise off the same site on December 9th. In ali, it was a return to something like its previous scarcity status for this species in 2012 following two previous years when there were relatively impressive totals. SLAVONIAN GREBE Podiceps auritus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Only four records of this species were received from the county's north-east recording area. They referred to two off Slaughden on January 3rd and singles off Minsmere, January 15th, on Benacre Broad from February 17th to 22nd and on Oulton Broad from October 13th to November 5th. A singleton was logged on a Deben WeBS count at Falkenham on March llth. Holbrook Bay's importance for this smart grebe during winter is well documented and the site again proved alluring for the species. Up to two were reported from the bay from the year's beginning to January 28th and, after five had been seen at Alton Water on January 28th, seven gathered in the bay on January 30th. In February most records came from Alton Water, the site's peak being five on 9th and 20th, and there were four at Stutton Ness on 14th, although Stour Estuary WeBS counters came up with a combined total of six on the same day. In March, six were noted at Alton Water on 2nd and seven were counted at Lower Holbrook on 1 lth with six at the latter site on 20th. The first returning bird of the autumn was a singleton at Lower Holbrook on October 30th. Up to three were seen at this site and Alton Water in November and there were up to seven in the Holbrook area in December, a month in which Alton Water's peak count was four. In addition, a single bird was noted on the River Orwell at Freston on 23rd and 26th. It should, of course, be borne in mind that there is almost certainly a good deal of interchange between the favoured sites of Holbrook Bay and Alton Water. BLACK-NECKED GREBE Podiceps nigricollis Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Not quite the showing we enjoyed during 2011, but stili a reasonable crop of records for a species that has in the past been something of a county rarity and which stili lures plenty of observers if one lingers. Ali records received are listed below. The Southwold and Minsmere records are thought to relate to the same individual. Gorleston Pier: Feb 12th (R Fairhead). Southwold: Feb 6th (L Townsend). Minsmere: Offshore, Feb 6th (R Drew). FrestonAVherstead: Feb 1 lth to 20th (multi-observer). Wherstead: Dee 3 lst (multi-observer). EUROPEAN HONEY-BUZZARD Pernis apivorus Scarce passage migrant. Amber list. 2012 was a fairly typical year for this species with five accepted reports from five sites. Of these one involved a spring migrant and four records came from late summer. Hen Reedbeds : south-east, 11 43hrs, Aug 20th (C Fulcher). Westleton Walks: July 24th (J A Rowlands). Minsmere: photographed soaring over Island Mere, July 5th (T Harris). Thorpeness: dark-phase juvenile north, 16.15hrs, Aug 31st (P Whittaker). Ipswieh: May 7th (L G Woods, J Woods). 73

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 RED KITE Milvus milvus Uncommon but increasing winter visitor and passage migrant. Bred in 1996 and 1997. A total of 234 reports was received for this species compared with 217 in 2011. This continues the upward trend of sightings in recent years, particularly during the spring and summer period. Reports came from 119 sites and mostly involved single birds, although there were also several reports of multiple sightings. BBS data for 2012 shows a 10% increase in numbers of this species nationally and a 9% rise in England. After a quiet start to the year there was a notable influx of birds into the north-east of the county during the third week of March. This resulted in sightings of two birds over Breydon South Wall, a group of four over Blundeston Marshes, two birds at Benacre and three at Covehithe. Elsewhere, single birds were seen at 33 other sites in Suffolk during March, including two at Livermere Lake on March 10th. April was comparatively quiet with reports from just 13 sites, possibly due to the poor weather conditions at that time. Activity increased somewhat in May when birds were seen at a total of 31 sites, including two together at North Cove on May 11th and 16th, two at Minsmere on May 28th and 31 st and two at Cavenham Heath on May 24th. By June reports indicated that four or five wide-ranging individuals were present in the county. Once again there were no reports of confirmed breeding in Suffolk, although breeding was suspected at one site in the west of the county, but this could not be verified at the time. One can only speculate as to whether the two juvenile birds seen 'actively hunting' close to the site in September were the result of a successful attempt. There were relatively few sightings in July, August and September then just three reports from October and November and two from December as the year also ended on a quiet note. Year No. of reports

2003 20

2004 24

2005 48

2007 6

2006 69

2008 82

2009 89

2010 98

2011 217

2012 234

WESTERN MARSH HARRIER Circus aeruginosas Fairly common summer visitor and passage migrant. Increasing numbers overwinter. Amber List. This species was widely reported from across the county with the usual emphasis of records coming from locations along the coastal margins. First winter roost counts in January included five at Belton Marshes; eight at Cove Bottom in Wrentham; three at Kessingland; five at Minsmere; six on Orfordness; four at Trimley Marshes and 22 at Lakenheath Fen. Notable February counts included five at Herringfleet; 12 at Cove Bottom; six at Potter's Bridge, Reydon and seven on Orfordness. Spring migrants were observed at Lowestoft where a pair flew in off the sea on February 25th and Landguard Bird Observatory where one flew south on March 10th, one in off the sea on April 26th, and single birds flew south on several dates in May. Breeding was confirmed at ten sites, which is slightly down on the 14 sites in 2011, and suspected at a further three coastal sites. Although there were fewer nests and fledged young in 2012, it was still a reasonably productive year. Notable breeding data included:Benacre Broad: four young fledged from two nests, the same as in 2011. Cove Bottom/Easton Broad: 19 young fledged from nine nests, a disappointing total compared with 30 from 11 in 2011. Minsmere: 24 fledged from seven nests (three other nests failed) compared with 21 from 12 in 2011. North Warren: two pairs raised three young (no data from 2011). Westwood Marshes: nine young from four nests (another nest failed), an increase on the five fledged in the last two years. Orfordness: a pair nested for the second consecutive year, but although they hatched five chicks only one was thought to have fledged. Lakenheath Fen: 34 young fledged, equalling the total for 2010 but down on the record total of 45 last year. 74

Systematic List

Western Marsh Harrier Peter Beeson


Also of interest was a wing-tagged juvenile female seen at Boyton Marshes on September 3rd which originated from the Hawk and Owl Trust's Sculthorpe Moor Nature Reserve in Norfolk, where it was tagged as a chick earlier in the year. Autumn passage birds were noted at Lowestoft where a male flew in off the sea on October 28th and at Hoptonon-Sea where another flew in off the sea on November 11th. Meanwhile at LBO one flew out to sea on August 15th and singles flew south on July 28th, on two dates in August and one in September. Single birds were also seen flying south and north past Landguard on October 27th and a group of six drifted inland over Dingle Marshes on November 11th. Second winter period roost counts included a maximum of 30 at Lakenheath Fen in November, plus ten at Minsmere then four on the Deben Estuary; four on Orfordness and 21 at Lakenheath Fen in December.


At Minsmere a female missed a food pass over Island Mere but dived down into the water with a second harrier. The second bird flew off but the first bird lay on the water with wings open where it was attacked by a group of Coots who attempted to drown it by sitting on it. Mallards and Great Crested Grebes joined in the melee and eventually the very wet and bedraggled harrier was able to 'row' itself to the reed edge and safety using its wings. E.W. Patrick

HEN HARRIER Circus cyaneus Scarce winter visitor and passage migrant. Red List. A total of 169 reports was received in 2012 which is significantly fewer than the 240 reports in 2011. Nevertheless the estimated number of individuals overwintering in the county was similar to last year. An estimated total of 20 or 21 birds was present in the first winter period, one fewer than in 2011 but still a comparatively high figure (see table below). At least 13 or 14 birds were present at the end of the year, compared with ten in 2011. The west of the county held most birds in both winter periods. During January and February a total of ten birds was counted at two traditional roosts in the Brecks. They ranged quite widely and were regularly recorded at other sites in the area. Up to seven birds are thought to have overwintered along the coastal margins. Late birds were logged at six sites in the north-east of the county during May and one was also seen at Shingle Street. The latest records involved a ringtail flying north at Minsmere on May 31 st and a male at Carlton Marshes on June 6th. A very early returning bird was seen at Breydon South Wall on August 1st. The next record was five weeks later, when a ringtail was seen at Minsmere on September 10th. At Southwold another ringtail flew in off the sea on September 25th. The only records for 75

Suffolk Birci Report


October also came from Minsmere, where single birds were seen on two dates. The number of wintering birds increased into November; five or six birds frequented the coastal margins until the end of the year. In the north-west up to eight birds were counted at the roost at Lakenheath Fen, including a maximum of six males. Table showing estimated total numbers of wintering birds between 2004 and 2012 Year 1st winter period 2nd winter period

2004 19 12

2005 8 6

2006 7 4

2007 6 7

2008 10 6

2009 6 6

2010 15 13

2011 22 10

2012 21 14

MONTAGU'S HARRIER Circus pygargus Uncommon passage migrant. Formerly bred. Amber List. It was a fairly average year for this species in which there were eight accepted reports involving five birds. The only spring record came from Orfordness where a ringtail put in a brief appearance early in May. The rest of the reports came from late summer and all involved juvenile birds, two of which lingered for several days around the Orfordness/Boyton Marshes/Havergate area between September 2nd and 22nd at least. Minsmere: juvenile, Sep 10th to 15th (M Riley et al.). Sizewell: juvenile* circled over holiday camp before drifting west, Aug 12th (R Chittenden). Orfordness: May 7th (M Marsh, D Crawshaw); juvenile, Sep 13th to 22nd (multi-observer). Havergate Island: juvenile, Sep 2nd (D Fairhurst, K Alexander). Bovton Marshes: juvenile, Sep 12th (P Whittaker, S Abbott); Sep 14th (R Etheridge). *Wing tags identified this bird as one of three chicks which hatched in Groningen, north-east Netherlands. NORTHERN GOSHAWK Acciptergentilis Scarce winter visitor and passage migrant. Uncommon resident All of the accepted reports came from traditional strongholds in north-west Suffolk where displaying birds were observed at three locations. Typically, Olley's Farm, Thetford, provided the majority of the records, the most notable of these being five birds, three males and two females, all seen within an hour on February 25th. Up to three birds were seen on several other dates. It was a rather disappointing breeding season; of the estimated four pairs in Thetford Forest only one pair successfully fledged young. The successful nest was in Suffolk and the chicks, a male and a female, were both ringed under licence. A second pair was known to have nested in the forest, but the outcome was not clear. FIELD


Two female Goshawks were released unharmed after entering enclosures on the Elveden Estate in west Suffolk in July. The first was accidentally caught in a crow trap and the second was found in a Pheasant pen, where it had killed three poults. Per Elveden Estate EURASIAN SPARROWHAWK Accipiter nisus Common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. A total of 365 reports (plus another 324 submitted through Birdtrack) was received in 2012 which is marginally higher than the 361 reports in 2011. Reports came from 154 sites, a very similar total to the 152 sites in 2011, but significantly lower than the 182 in 2010. The species was recorded on five out of 12 visits to Lavenham Railway Walks. BBS data for 2012 show a significant 20% increase across the UK, and a smaller increase of 12% in the east of England. Breeding was confirmed at nine sites and display was observed at another four. There was little evidence of passage movement, though in spring three were noted at 76

Systematic List Orfordness on March 24th and two were seen at Landguard Bird Observatory on March 18th. There were also sightings of singles flying south on two dates in the first week of April at the latter site. There were two reports of road casualties in the north-west of the county, at Rickinghall and at Pakenham, both involving juvenile female birds. A male bird was once again seen waiting for bats to emerge from their roost at West Stow C.P. (C Gregory) and nearby at North Stow one was seen attempting to take a Mistle Thrush. COMMON BUZZARD Buteo buteo Fairly common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant; increasing breeding population. This species is still by far the most widely-reported raptor in Suffolk. The 771 reports (plus 343 other reports submitted via Birdtrack) represent a 12% increase on the 689 reports from 2011. It seems inconceivable that 20 years ago there were just 34 reports of this species across the county. BBS data for 2012 reflect this unprecedented increase in population with a >1,000% increase in the east of England for the second year running, compared with a relatively modest 6% increase nationally. Groups of soaring birds were seen at several sites during a mild spell early on in the year. Counts included ten between Cavenham and Risby and eight around the Puttockshill/ Ixworth area in January. Groups of eight birds were seen over Ipswich Golf Course (Purdis Farm) and at Boyton Marshes in February. Spring migration appears to have started rather early with passage birds noted at several coastal locations from mid-March. These included eight over Cowton House Marshes, Iken, 11 at Orfordness on March 18th, five flying north at Kessingland on March 19th and two in off the sea there on April 3rd. The 'kettle' of 18 birds seen soaring over Berner's Heath on March 19th may well have included some passage birds. Despite its widespread distribution breeding records came from less than ten sites. During autumn there was a noticeable increase in movement between late August and mid-October. The most notable coastal observations included 20 birds at Minsmere on September 15th; one flying out to sea at Pakefield on September 19th, one in off the sea at Aldeburgh on October 14th and ten over Orfordness on October 6th. ROUGH-LEGGED BUZZARD Buteo lagopus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Following the plethora of reports in 2011, 2012 turned out to be a rather quiet year for this species. There were probably only two birds both in the earlier part of the year. Single birds were seen at Boyton Marshes and in the Brecks. The latter was a juvenile bird which remained in the area for several days, favouring an area around The King's Forest and Berner's Heath, where it roosted. Boyton Marshes: Feb 21st (S Piotrowski, S Abbott). The Kings Forest: with two Common Buzzards drifting north-west over Shelterhouse Corner, Mar 1 Ith (C Gregory). Berner's Heath: juvenile, roosting each evening, Mar 13th to 16th (C Gregory, J and G Rankin, et al. ). OSPREY Pandion haliaetus Uncommon passage migrant. Amber list. The 46 reports received this year was the highest total since 2008, but still fell well short ofthat year's record 80 reports. Of these 25 reports came from the spring and probably involved ten ori 1 individuals. The first returning bird was seen over Upper Hollesley Common on March 10th, the second-earliest date ever (the earliest was March 8th in 2009). There were just four reports from April and then a steady influx into May resulted in reports of single birds at 12 coastal sites and three inland sites. These included one individual which was observed flying over 77

Suffolk Birci Report


four sites as it passed south between Hazlewood Marshes and North Warren. Similarly, one was seen passing over three sites in June. There were a further three reports in June including, a ringed bird at Brettenham. Breydon Water: May 2nd Lowestoft Denes: May 6th. Carlton Marshes: May 2nd.

Worlingham: June 4th. Lound Waterworks: south. May 22nd. Kessingland: north, Apr 2nd. Hazlewood Marshes: south, May 27th. Dunwich Heath: May 27th; June 4th. Minsmere: south, May 27th; south, June 4th; north-east, June 10th. North Warren: May 27th.

Snape: May 28th. Melton: Apr 24th. Upper Holleslev Common: Mar 10th. Felixstowe: May 17th. Landguard Bird Observatory: south, May 10th.

Trimley St. Martin: Loompit Lake, May 29th. Alton Water: June 15th. Stutton Mill: Apr 16th.

Brettenham: ringed bird June 9th. Cavenham Pits: May 8th. Lackford Lakes: Apr 30th.

Lakenheath Fen: May 15th; May 25th. A total of 19 reports was received from the late summer/early autumn period. A single bird was seen in the Orfordness area at the end of July and six more reports were received from August. Further migrants were seen at six sites in September and two in October. The last record came from Minsmere on October 13th. Bradwell: south, Aug 29th. Carlton Marshes: west, Sep 4th.

Kessingland: west, Sep 22nd. Reydon: Smear, south, Aug 22nd. Dunwich Cliffs: south, low over the sea, Aug 17th. Minsmere: Sep 25th; Oct 13th. Orfordness: July 28th. Havergate Island: July 29th. Boyton Marshes: Aug 3rd.

Bawdsey: Sep 27th. Orwell Bridge: Oct 10th. Pipps Ford: Oct 8th.

Wickhambrook: flushed from ground, Sep 16th; Sep 18th. Lackford Lakes: Aug 29th; Sep 19th; Sep 29th. Icklingham: Ramparts Field, Aug 8th. FIELD


The Darvic ring o n the Brettenham bird revealed that it had been ringed as a chick in South Lanarkshire in 2010. M and D Carter

C O M M O N KESTREL Falco tinnunculus Common resident. Scarce passage migrant. Amber list. Over 1200 reports were received this year representing a big increase on 2011, although this species is still seriously under-recorded in some regions. A total of 938 records was submitted through Birdtrack including 371 from the north-east but only 12 reports - mainly 78

Systematic List pertaining to breeding and passage data - came through the north-east county recorder! It was recorded on 11 out of 12 visits along Lavenham Railway Walks. BBS data for 2012 show a 23% increase nationally, compared with a 2% decline in 2010 and 2011. However, in the east of England they show a 14% decline in the population, continuing the downward trend for this species in our region. Likely spring passage birds included one north offshore at Thorpeness on March 16th and singles south past LBO on May 19th and June 8th. Breeding was confirmed at 15 locations across the region, including five pairs at North Warren. A pair nested on Orfordness for the first time since 2003, but was unsuccessful. In late summer a possible early migrant was seen flying in off the sea at North Beach, Lowestoft on August 18th. The following month three flew in off the sea at Ness Point, Lowestoft; one flew south offshore at Thorpeness and at Landguard singles were seen flying south on September 17th and October 13th. On Orfordness numbers peaked at ten in mid-September. RED-FOOTED FALCON Falco vespertinus Rare visitor There was one accepted report of this species in 2012; a first-summer female was present at Minsmere for two days in late May. Minsmere: 1 st-summer female, May 30th and 31st (A Lees et al.). MERLIN Falco columbarius Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber List. The 96 reports of this species in 2012 is a 22% increase on the 79 in 2011. Birds were observed at 45 sites across Suffolk compared with 42 in 2011. The majority of sightings came from coastal sites in the south-east of the county. Records from the first winter period indicate that between five and seven birds were present. These included two on Orfordness during January and February, and three there in early March. Elsewhere, single birds, including an immature female, were seen at several other sites in that area. Records from the north-east were comparatively sparse; females put in appearances at Breydon South Wall and Barsham in January. A female flew in off the sea at Minsmere on February 24th. At least two birds were present in the west; most of the 13 reports involved a male, but a female was seen hunting at a Pied Wagtail roost at Lackford Lakes on March 24th. April produced just seven records; in the north-east a male was at Breydon South Wall and females were seen at Lowestoft and Kessingland. Other records came from Benacre, Orfordness, and Lakenheath Fen. Most birds had departed by May and the only reports were of single birds at Carlton Marshes, Kessingland, Wangford with Henham, Orfordness and Havergate Island. Interestingly a male apparently oversummered in the Brecks. It was initially seen at Berner's Heath on May 12th then what was presumably the same bird was seen in the Cavenham area on two dates in June then again on August 11th. Returning birds were noted at Landguard on August 24th, Orfordness on August 25th and at Kessingland on August 31 st. In September single birds were still being reported from Kessingland and Orfordness and one was also seen at Minsmere. In October a female was seen flying in off the sea at Gorleston, two birds were present on Orfordness and at Berner's Heath and a male was seen at Lakenheath Fen. The latter part of the year was fairly quiet; it seems likely that between six or seven birds w ere present in the county. The four reports from November all involved single birds. December produced ten reports including two birds on Orfordness. Inland, two birds were Present in the Brecks; a male was seen on three dates at Lakenheath Fen in November and two birds were seen at Lackford Lakes on December 27th. 79

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 Year 1st winter period 2nd winter period










5 8

4 4

7 5

5 5

5 6

5 5

6 6

5 7

7 7

Table showing estimated total numbers of wintering birds between 2004 and 2012

EURASIAN HOBBY Falco subbuteo Fairly common summer visitor and passage migrant. The 381 reports received in 2012 (with another 49 submitted through Birdtrack) represents a 13% increase on last year's total of 337 and are 9% higher than the 351 reports in 2010. Reports came from 113 sites across the county. BBS data for 2012 show a 6% increase nationally. The first spring arrival was seen at Lakenheath Fen on April 20th; this was followed by 20 more reports during April, including six at Minsmere on April 30th and ten at Lakenheath Fen on April 27th. The number of migrants continued to increase into early May and notable counts included ten at North Warren on May 11th and 19 there on May 17th. Inland at Lakenheath Fen the highest count was 50 on May 13th. Visible migration included one seen flying in off the sea at Ness Point on May 20th. By June many birds started to disperse but nine were still present at Dunwich Heath on June 10th. Breeding was confirmed at nine sites in the north-east; all held a single pair except Minsmere where there were four. Elsewhere, pairs bred at Pipps Ford, Culford and Ampton. In Thetford Forest (Norfolk and Suffolk) four pairs were located and one of these was known to have successfully fledged young. Sightings from late August involving possible migrants came from Corton, Gunton and Shingle Street. In September singles were also seen flying south at Lowestoft, Kessingland and Landguard, three birds were seen flying in off the sea at Thorpeness and a juvenile flew in off the sea at Orfordness. Finally, there was a total of 18 reports of birds in October; the last two birds were seen at Lakenheath Fen on October 20th and Minsmere on October 25th. PEREGRINE FALCON Falcoperegrinus Uncommon but increasing winter visitor and passage migrant. Has bred since 2008. Categories A and E. This species continues to be recorded across the county throughout the year and is showing signs of increasing its breeding population. The number of reports received in 2012 was 244, very similar to last year's total of 249 and the 251 in 2010. Reports came from 80 sites compared with 89 in 2011. Interestingly, the BBS data for this species in 2012 show a 1% decline across the whole of the UK. Records suggest that there may have been as many as a dozen Peregrines overwintering in the county during the first winter period. This raises the possibility that the original figure given in the 2011 report for the second winter period may have been underestimated. There were at least two breeding attempts in the county in 2012. A pair bred successfully on the Orwell Bridge for the fifth successive year, fledging two chicks. Another pair nested in Lowestoft but sadly Peregrine Falcon the single chick did not survive. Meanwhile at Richard Allen ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Felixstowe, work to demolish two port cranes 80

Great White Egret at Alton Water in December.





Red Kite sightings on the increase. John Richardson

15. Hen Harrier male at Shingle Street in April. John Richardson

17. Oystercatcher a common sight and sound on the coastal marshes

. Purple Sandpiper regular winter Visitor to Ness Point. Peter Ransome



19. Knot at Lowestoft in September. Peter


Systematic List was delayed because a pair was seen frequenting one of the structures. Early indications were promising as the pair was seen displaying but then things became somewhat confused by the arrivai of other birds on the scene between March and October. These included at least two other males, including an immature bird, and two more females, a probable hybrid and a juvenile. A pair again held territory at a site in west Suffolk but there was no evidence of any breeding attempi. The number of birds overwintering in the latter part of the year is estimated at ten. WATER RAIL Rallus aquatica* Fairly common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. This species was recorded at 54 sites, remaining widespread throughout the county. Breeding was confirmed at only five sites however, with the largest populations at Minsmere (40 pairs) and North Warren (24 pairs). Reports of breeding were received from only one site in the west of the county, Lackford Lakes. Single birds were recorded passing through Landguard on February 1 Ith and March Ist and sporadically between November 7th and 30th. A dead bird was discovered at Landguard on October 1 Ith.

Water Rail Richard


SPOTTED CRAKE Porzana porzana For the second successive year there were no reports of Spotted Crake in Suffolk. COMMON MOORHEN GallĂ­nula chloropus Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. This common, though under-recorded species, remains widespread with breeding or probable breeding reported from only 18 sites. The highest count of 63 birds was recorded at Alton Water on November 18th. The results of winter counts (where available) at ail regularly-monitored sites are shown below:Counts from regularly-monitored sites: Jan Feb Mar 11 Minsmere 4 2 24 Aide/Ore Estuar) 17 8 Deben Estuary 14 16 12 Orwell Estuary 12 15 Alton Water 1S 16 Stour Estuary g 25 10 30 Lackford Lakes 42 -

Apr 7 -


Sep 12 Ss9

Oct 1 5 7

Nov -

14 10 14 63

Dee 2 19 10 5 30




9 17












COMMON COOT Futica atra Ver y common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Breeding or probable breeding was reported from only 17 sites and high winter counts were recorded at Alton Water (peaking at 932 on November 18th) and Lackford Lakes (432 81

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 on November 6th). With only one sighting of a Coot on Orfordness all year, recorders are left to ponder the cause of such a sharp decline. The results of winter counts at all regularlymonitored sites are shown below, where data are available:Counts from regularly-monitored sites: Jan Feb Mar Leathes Ham 40 69 25 Hen Reedbeds 6 30 25 32 63 Minsmere 3 Aide/Ore Estuary 0 5 42 Deben Estuary 0 2 0 Stour Estuary 14 0 0 71 Orwell Estuary 75 Alton Water 361 451 113 Lackford Lakes 176 65 -

Apr -


Sep 40 0 86


6 0






219 203

Oct 45 0 107 5 0 -

506 261

Nov 61 0 18 0 0 -

249 932 249

Dec 31 0 143 0 0 -

168 834 158

C O M M O N C R A N E Grus grus Scarce passage migrant. Has bred since 2007. Amber List Breeding was again confirmed at Lakenheath Fen RSPB Reserve in 2012 resulting in the fledging of one young bird. A maximum of seven birds was recorded on the reserve on October 29th and December 7th with smaller numbers being observed at other times. Prior to breeding, two pairs, an unpaired adult and a first-winter bird were recorded. A further 16 reports were received from 11 sites away from the breeding area seemingly relating to between 11 and 16 individuals. All these records are included below:Breydon South Wall: four, Apr 27th.

Flixton: west, Apr 15th. North Cove: Castle Marshes, May 9th. Carlton Colville: Carlton Marshes, four, Apr 1st. Benacre: two north, Oct 30th. Covehithe: two south, Mar 21st. Minsmere: three south then later north, Mar 19th; three alighted in the reedbed, Mar 28th; two south, May 2nd. North Warren: two south, May 2nd.

EURASIAN OYSTERCATCHER Haematopus ostralegus Very common winter visitor and passage migrant. Common resident. Amber list. An early count of 170 on the Orwell at Woolverstone on January 7th was only exceeded when 350 birds were present on the Stour near Stutton Mill on November 28th. The highest inland count yet again came from Livermere Lake with 27 birds on March 2nd. Breeding records were even lower than in 2011 with only nine sites across the county (12 in 2011), of which three (two in 2011) were inland. There were seven pairs at Minsmere and Orfordness had an estimated 21-23 pairs. No sites recorded fledging success. The maximum movement was 78 south on August 25th at Landguard, where a total of 348 flew south during that month. WeBS counts were as follows:-

Blyth Estuary Aide Estuarv Deben Estuarv Orwell Estuary Stour Estuary

Jan 84 46 25 1483 621

Feb 150 42 113 1764 363

Mar 153 272 210



103 ' -




- -





Sep -

Oct 18 9 83

Nov 51 53 77 1345 -

Dec 75 39 78 1402

Systematic List BLACK-WINGED STILT Rare visitor.



Minsmere: pair, May 7th, the first at Minsmere since 1993 (D A Fairhurst et al.). PIED AVOCET Recurvirostra avosetta Fairly common resident, summer visitor and passage migrant on the coast. Amber list. Breeding records were received from just six sites. At Minsmere, one fledged from 108 nests. On Orfordness at least 17 pairs attempted to breed, but prédation was extreme with no recorded fledging success. At Boyton Marshes 14 pairs fledged six young, with four relaying after initial failure. Inland records were received from Cavenham Heath, Lakenheath and Lackford Lakes. The Aide/Ore complex maintains its position as being of international importance while the Deben, Orwell and Stour are of national importance for wintering Avocets. Please note that the WeBS figures for the Stour included here are just for the Suffolk side. WeBS counts were as follows:— Sep Oct Nov Dee Jan Feb Mar Apr Aug Blyth Estuary 37 153 606 350 454 70 Aide Estuarv 824 1028 741 1206 785 714 Deben Estuarv 306 385 131 167 288 341 7 3 Orwell Estuary • 54 101 83 72 74 Stour Estuary 96 0 0 4 0 Counts of 200 or more, other than WeBS, were as follows:Breydon South Fiats: 275, Feb 25th; 800, Sep 2Ist; 300, Oct 13th. Blyth Estuary: 280, Mar 3Ist.

Minsmere: 217, June 18th. Orfordness: 214, Febl2th; 228, Aug 9th; 220, Aug 12th. Havergate: 210. July 16th; 261, July 19th; 460, July 23rd; 400, Aug 7th; 448, Aug 13th; 250, Aug 16th; 404, Sep 16th; 497, Sep 18th; 413, Oct 14th; 300, Nov 3rd; 600, Nov 1 Ith; 338, Nov 18th; 217, Dee 16th. Iken: 435, Jan 26th; 485, Feb 21st; 558, Mar Ist. Boyton Marshes / Butley River: 250, Jan 1 Ith; 249, Feb 13th; 300, Aug 18th; 329, Sep 16th; 256, Oct

14th; 214, Oct 3Ist; 256, Dec 23rd. STONE-CURLEW Burhinus oedicnemus Locally fairly common summer visitor. Amber List. The two overwintering birds from 2011 were stili present on Cavenham Heath from January 1 st to at least January 8th. The first incoming record was of two birds at Lackford Lakes on March 8th. Thirteen birds were recorded at Minsmere on April 6th. There were 125 breeding pairs recorded in the Suffolk Breck plus 52 pairs at Elveden, where at least 19 chicks fledged. On the coast there were 14 pairs of which ten pairs were in the Minsmere/Westleton area. Post-breeding, the highest count was of 95 birds at Cavenham Heath on September 8th. The Westleton Walks area (Minsmere) recorded 24 birds on October 2nd and again on October 1 Ith. The latest count was of 17 birds at a west Suffolk site near Lackford on November lOth. LITTLE R I N G E D PLOVER



Uncommon summer visitor and passage migrant. The first arrivai was at Cavenham Pits on March 2Ist, with birds also seen at Flixton Gravel Pits and Lackford Lakes during the following week. Eleven birds were present at Flixton Gravel Pits on May 13th, which was the highest count of the year. Breeding was confirmed at only one site, Flixton Gravel Pits, where three pairs fledged 83

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 five young. There was possible breeding at three other sites. The last record of the autumn was a singleton at Minsmere on September lOth. RINGED PLOVER Charadrius hiaticula Declining resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Counts over 50 in the first winter/spring period were:Breydon South Fiats: 200, May 30th; 144, June 2nd.

Orfordness: 53, May 13th; 53, May 27th. Sightings of birds considered to be of race tundrae were:Minsmere: May 27th, May 30th. North Warren: Mayl9th. Boyton Marshes: May 14th, May 27th.

Mickle Mere: May 26th and 27th. Breeding was again confirmed at only four sites:— Kessingland: one pair, two young raised. Minsmere: one pair. Orfordness: three pairs, no chicks fledged. Landguard: two pairs, one young raised. Düring the autumn/second winter period flocks over 50 were:Orfordness: 116, Aug 23rd; 130 on site plus 277 south, Aug 25th. Woodbridge: Deben Estuary, 56, Aug 17th; 52, Sep 5th. WeBS data:Blyth Estuary Aide Estuarv Deben Estuarv Orwell Estuarv Stour Estuar)

Jan 0 5 45 87 56

Feb 0 11 49 39 9

Mar 0 10 6


Sep -



Oct 0 16 51







Nov 8 10 101 56 ;

Dec 0 47 48 37


EURASIAN DOTTEREL Charadrius morinellus Scarce passage migrant. Amber list. There was a single autumn sighting. Havergate: juv, Sep 21st and 22nd (P Gallagher). AMERICAN GOLDEN PLOVER Pluvialis dominica Accidentai. The second Suffolk record following one at Breydon Water in October 2003. Landguard: June 1 Ith (D Bennett, W J Brame, P Oldfield). EUROPEAN GOLDEN PLOVER Pluvialis apricaria Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Recorded in every month of the year except June (as in 2011), with highest single count of the year being 1000 at Lackford village on November 23rd (R Duncan). Counts of 300 or more were widespread, although fewer than in 2011:— Ellough: 400, Jan 16th. Slaughden: 400, Dec 21st. Gedgrave Marshes: 785, Jan 25th; 400, Dec 17th. Havergate: 438, Oct 14th; 638, Nov 18th.

Levington: 500+, Jan lOth; 500+, Aug 10th;510,Aug 19th;650, Sep 28th; 400, Oct 6th. Lackford village: 1000, Nov 23rd. Mickle Mere: 400, Dec 23rd.

Long Melford: 700, Dec 26th; 300, Dec 3Ist.




WeBS data:Blytb Estuary Aide Estuarv Deben Estuary Orwell Estuarv Stour Estuary

Jan 0 1253 1205 78 14

Feb 0 U 53 46 4

Mar 0 31 46

Apr -

Sep -

0 0









Nov 0 1784 1944 ;^ 0 126 -

Oct 0 640 64

Dee 0 167 1587 0 10

G R E Y P L O V E R Pluvialis squatarolu Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Present in every month of the year, but only on coastal scrapes and estuarine sites. There were no inland reports. The Stour Estuary continued to give the highest numbers, although WeBS counts were below 2011 levels. Counts over 50 from individuai sites were:Havergate: 150, Nov 3rd.

Woodbridge: River Deben, 50+, Dec 15th. Levington Creek: 127, Nov 28th. Holbrook Bay: 64, Feb 14th.

Stutton Mill: 150, Nov 28th. WeBS data:Blyth Estuary Aide Estuary Deben Estuary Orwell Estuarv Stour Estuary

Jan 0 22 335 105 807

Feb 15 75 242 298 458

Mar 3 13 150


Sep -









Oct 0 24 377 -



Nov 0 8 392 163 -

Dec -

38 484 144 -

N O R T H E R N L A P W I N G Vanellus vanellus Very common winter visitor and passage migrant. Declining as a breeding species. Red list. Counts of 500 or more in the first winter period were:Minsmere: 1120, Jan Ist. North Warren: 630, Jan 7th; 827, Jan 13th; 500, Mar3rd. Iken Cliff: 530, Jan 8th. Gedgrave Marshes: 1060, Jan 25th. Boyton Marshes: 600+, Jan 19th. Trimley Marshes: 810, Jan 2Ist. Uvermere Lake: 1200, Jan 9th. Breeding was confirmed at Carlton Marshes, Barsham Marshes, Oulton Marshes, Minsmere (38 pairs fledged 19 young), North Warren (12 pairs), Boyton Marshes, Trimley Marshes, Knettishall Airfield, Livermere Lake, Mickle Mere, Pipps Ford, Shelley Priory Reservoir, Great Barton, Cavenham Heath, Gifford's Hall in Stoke-byNayland, and Bures. There were a number of additional possible breeding sites. Three-figure post-breeding flocks were recorded at the following sites:Orfordness: 110, Aug 9th. Livermere Lake: 250, July 20th; 193, July 2Ist; —f ' ^ r 162, Aug 14th; 150, Aug 18th; 211, Sep Ist; 102, Northern Lapwing Richard

Sep 4th.



Suffolk Birci Report 2012 Mickle Mere: 104, Aug 2nd; 136, Aug 8th; 102, Aug 12th.

The only second winter flocks of 500 or more were:Orfordness: 620, Nov 17th. Havergate: 709, Nov 18th.

WeBS data:Blyth Estuarv Aide Estuarv Deben Estuarv Orwell Estuarv Stour Estuary

Jan 270 2970 2187 891 792

Feb 600 295 238 242 97

Mar 130 507 44













Oct Nov 64 40 643 2108 368 1495 768 462 -

Dec 621 3959 1410 641 115

RED KNOT Calidris canutus Locally common winter visitor andpassage migrant. Amber list. The majority of significant records carne from WeBS counts, especially on the Stour Estuary:Blyth Estuary Aide Estuarv Deben Estuarv Orwell Estuarv Stour Estuary

Jan 700 4 223 460 865

Feb 860 142 108 1928 1069

Mar 0 32 6 -

Apr 0 1 -

Oct 0 -, 4 14 9 X -



Nov 0 5 6 274



Dec 0 9 6 3159 b

Birds were present in every month, but apart from WeBS there was only one count over 100. Counts of 20 or more were:Breydon South Flats: 20, May 7th.

Lowestoft: Ness Point, 34 north, Aug31 st. Kessingland: 28 south, Sep 6th. Minsmere: 40, Aug 26th. Thorpeness: 32 south, Feb 7th; 35 north, five south, Aug 31st. Orfordness: 58, Feb 11th; 131, Feb 12th; 88, Feb 19th; 59, Apr 29th. Havergate: 22, May 3rd. Iken Cliff: 43, Mar 1st; 38, Mar 26th.

Woodbridge: Deben Estuary, 50, Feb 24th; 30, Dec 21st. Landguard: 126 south, Aug 25th (see Ringed Plover, Orfordness). Holbrook Bay: 56, Feb 14th.

SANDERLING Calidris alba Locally common winter visitor and passage migrant. All sightings were at coastal/estuarine sites, with no inland reports. The species was recorded in every month, but generally in single figures. Monthly maxima from the seven most regular sites were:Jan Gorleston Lowestoft Kessingland Benacre .Minsmere Orfordness Landguard


2 4 -

1 -


Feb 7 5 11 9 2 1 5

Mar 1 1 2 6

Apr 7 -








May Jun 14 1 6 V- / il - i 8 8 4 5 2 -

There were no other counts over ten. 86

Jul -


1 1 6 2 -

Aug 2 1

Sep -






3 24 1

8 6 -

Oct 1 1 1

Nov 2 8


Dec 1 1 -

1 -

I -



Systematic List LITTLE STINT Calidris minuta Uncommon passage migrant. Occasionally overwinters. There were no inland birds reported. Early-winter singles were at:— Orfordness: Jan 10th. Felixstowe: Jan 6th. Spring passage was recorded at:Breydon South Flats: two, June 2nd. Blyth Estuary: Tinker's Marshes, May 20th. Minsmere: May 18th; May 20th; May 27th, 28th and 29th. Orfordness: May 27th; May 30th. Boyton Marshes: May 18th; four, May 19th; three, May 20th. Trimley Marshes: May 24th. Autumn sightings were as follows:Blyth Estuary: Sep 4th; Tinker's Marshes, Aug 31st to Sep 2nd; Sep 4th. Minsmere: two, Aug 14th; two, Aug 16th; two, Aug 18th; Sep 7th; Sep 10th to 13th; Sep 15th to 16th; Sep 20th; Sep 22nd; two, Sep 23rd; Sep 24th; three, Sep 25th; Oct 9th. Orfordness: July 28th; four, Augl8th; Aug 19th; four, Aug 22nd; two, Aug 23rd; six, Aug 25th; four, Aug 26th; five, Sep 22nd to 26th; Oct 13th; Oct 14th; Oct 20th. Havergate: two, July 29th; Aug 7th; two, Aug 16th. Trimley Marshes: July 23rd. Stutton Mill: Aug 10th; Aug 28th. There was a single December bird at Dingle Marshes on 30th. TEMMINCK'S STINT Calidris temminckii Scarce passage migrant. Red list. Probably only six birds involved, all in May. Blyth Estuary: Tinker's Marshes, three, May 20th to 22nd. North Warren Marshes: May 19th. Boyton Marshes: two, May 19th; two. May 22nd. WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER Calidris fuscicollis Rare passage migrant. This photographed bird is the 29th Suffolk record but was not seen by many. Havergate: July 22nd (D A Fairhurst). PECTORAL SANDPIPER Calidris melanotos Scarce passage migrant. There was a single record in June, the third consecutive year that this wader has occurred in Suffolk in the spring:Orfordness: June 10th. Autumn sightings were:Minsmere: Aug 8th to 10th; Sep 7th to 11th; Sep 16th to 23rd; Sep 26th. North Warren Marshes: Sep 30th. Orfordness: Aug 9th to 16th; Sep 22nd and 23rd. CURLEW SANDPIPER Calidris ferruginea Uncommon passage migrant. The regular wintering bird was present on the Deben at Melton for the fourth year running, but the only evidence of overwintering at the end of the year was from the Orwell. Melton: Jan 1st, 3rd, 7th, 12th and 27th; Feb 27th (G Grieco et al.). Spring sightings came from five sites:Breydon South Flats: June 2nd. Minsmere: May 2nd, 7th and 13th.


Suffolk Birci Report 2012 Orfordness: Apr 21 st. Cattawade: May 8th.

Autumn records were as follows, with no inland sightings:Breydon South Fiats: Sep 2Ist; Oct 6th.

Benacre: July 23rd. Blyth Estuary: July 28th. Tinker's Marshes, Sep Ist, Sep 4th; Sep 7th; Sep 13th; Sep 15th and 16th; Sep 19th. Minsmere: July 26th; July 29th; Aug 4th; Aug 13th; nine, Aug 14th; three, Aug 15th; two, Sep 9th to 1 Ith; Sep 20th; two, Sep 2Ist; Sep 22nd; Sep 26th. Thorpeness: south, Aug 15th; six south, Sep 23rd. North Warren Marshes: Aug 18th.

Orfordness: two, Jul 29th; five, Jul 31 st; two, Aug 4th; Aug 7th; Aug 9th; Aug 1 Ith; two, Aug 12th; Aug 30th; two, Sep Ist; eight, Sep 8th; two, Sep 9th; Sep 12th; Sep 22nd. Havergate: Jul 23rd; Aug 4th; four, Aug 7th; three, Aug 13th; five, Aug 16th; Aug 18th. Melton: Oct 22nd. Felixstowe Ferry: Oct 2nd.

Trimley St Martin: Loompit Lake, Dec 24th. PURPLE SANDPIPER Calidris maritima Fairly common winter visitor. Scarce passage migrant. Amber list. Lowestoft Ness Point (and adjacent sites) retained their prominent position for this species during the first winter period, with observations on 50 days between January Ist and April 30th. A single bird was on the adjacent North Beach on May 8th. Highest monthly counts at Ness Point were: January, eight (14th; 22nd; 27th and 28th), February, eight (18th and 19th), March, ten (2Ist) and April, nine (Ist). Other sightings were at Felixstowe Promenade (Jan Ist; Jan 4th; two, Jan 23rd; Feb 16th and 17th), and at Landguard (Jan 6th; two, Jan 14th; Feb 9th; Feb 2Ist; Mar 5th). In the second winter period records were again dominated by Lowestoft Ness Point (and adjacent sites) with 23 sightings between September 16th and December 25th. The mรกximum count was nine on November 17th and 20th. Other observations during this period were:Easton Bavents: Oct 1 Ith; Oct 18th to 20th; two, Nov 5th; Nov 6th; Dec 2nd. Dingle Marshes: Nov 4th.

Minsmere: Aug 24th; Oct 1 Ith and 12th. Thorpeness: Oct 9th. Aldeburgh: Oct 9th.

Orfordness: Aug 25th to Sep Ist; Dec Ist. Havergate: Aug 16th. Landguard: Sep 12th; Oct Ist; Oct 6th; Nov 17th.

DUNLIN Calidris alpina Very common winter visitor and passage migrant. Red list. In the first winter period, the following inland sites were involved, as well as most of the usual coastal sites: Flixton Gravel Pits, Sutton Heath, Alton Water, Lackford Lakes, Lakenheath Washes, Mickle Mere, Livermere Lake, Higham St Mary and Sudbury Common Lands. Three-figure counts during this period, aside from WeBS shown below, carne from the following locations: Breydon South Fiats: 400, Feb 5th. Burgh Castle Fiats: 100, Jan Ist; 140, Jan 24th.

Lowestoft: Lake Lothing, 103, Feb 9th. Blyth Estuary: 850, Jan 31st. Iken Cliff: 1800, Jan 8th; 180, Mar 26th; 315, Apr 12th. Orfordness: 1258, Feb 4th; 1110, Feb 1 Ith. Havergate: 350, Feb 3rd; 458, Feb 9th; 553, Feb 12th.

River Aide: Long Reach, 145, Feb 7th. 88

Systematic List Boyton Marshes: 294, Febl2th. Butley River: 143, Feb 13th.

Kamsholt: 326, Jan 22nd. River Orwell: off Bridge Wood, 270, Feb 16th. Holbrook Bay: 210, Feb 14th. River Aide, Long Reach: 145, Feb 7th.

From April 13th to July 22nd there were no three-figure counts. During the second winter period, the only inland sites providing records were Flixton Gravel Pits, Lackford Lakes, Mickle Mere and Livermere Lake. Three-figure counts, aside from WeBS, came from the following locations:North Warren Marshes: 300, Dec 1st.

Orfordness: 226, Aug 23rd; 139, Aug 30th; 100+, Sep 9th. Havergate: 150, July 23rd; 100, July 29th; 330, Aug 7th; 100, Aug 12th and 13th; 120, Sep 18th; 450, Nov 11th; 425, Dec 16th. Butley River: 195, Dec 23rd.

Woodbridge: Deben Estuary, 400, Dec 2nd; 1000+, Dec 15th. Landguard: 172 south, Oct 12th. WeBS data:Blyth Estuary Aide Estuary Deben Estuar) Orwell Estuarv Stour Estuary

Jan Feb 740 1200 3896 3196 2801 3033 3280 4139 3489 3031

Mar 425 759 194 -

Apr -

184 VAS'. -

Sep -


Oct 6 357 253





Nov 1826 340 1546 2112 -

Dec 3315 3874 2056 2776 -

RUFF Philomachus pugnax Fairly common passage migrant. Small numbers overwinter. Red list. Birds were recorded in every month of the year. Minsmere recorded this species in every month except November. Reports were received from six inland sites: Shipmeadow on River Waveney, Castle Marshes (North Cove), Flixton Gravel Pits, Mickle Mere, Livermere Lake and Gifford's Hall (Stoke-by-Nayland). There were only seven counts of ten or more during the year:Shipmeadow: 60, Jan 10th and 11th; 25, Jan 12th.

Blyth Estuary: Tinker's Marshes, ten, Aug 18th. North Cove: Castle Marshes, ten, Apr 2nd. Minsmere: 17, Apr 5th; 16, Apr 7th.

Orfordness: 12, July 15th; 12, Aug 11th; 19, Aug 26th; 17, Aug 27th. Trimlev Marshes: 11, Sep 8th.

The total of 60 at Shipmeadow, January 10th and 11th is the second-highest winter total of this species in Suffolk, only exceeded by 62 at Burgh Castle, December 20th 2008. JACK SNIPE Lymnocryptes minimus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Recorded from 11 coastal and three inland sites in the first winter period; all were singles apart from four at Flixton Gravel Pits on February 12th. North Warren recorded the last bird of the spring on May 4th and the first autumn record with two on September 29th. Thereafter it was November before any more were seen when a scattering of singles was recorded in the north-east and on the southern estuaries, with two birds being seen at Dingle Marshes, 4th, Flixton Gravel Pits, 1 Ith, Mutford, 19th and Parkhill in Oulton, Lowestoft, 22nd. A single bird was sighted at Pipps Ford, Needham Market from late November into December. Flixton Gravel Pits held another four on December 2nd, three were seen at Abbey Farm, Snape on December 3rd and there were two 89

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 reported from Mutford on December 18th. The only other inland December record came from Lakenheath RSPB on 16th. With just two sightings for the whole of 2012, Orfordness recorded its worst year on record for this species. COMMON SNIPE Gallinago gallinago Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Probably extinct as a breeding species. Amber list. The closest to a breeding record came from a group of 11, with some displaying over a flooded field, at Hinderclay on May 9th. Otherwise first winter period sightings of this species were recorded from 25 coastal and 11 inland sites ( 14 and ten in 2011 ). Other than the table below significant counts came from:Oulton Marshes: 36, Feb 5th, 14, Mar 27th. Lowestoft: Kirkley, 15, Feb 5th. Kessingland: 35, Feb 6th. Boyton Marshes: 11, Mar 19th; 13, Mar 26th. Trimley Marshes: 12, Mar 29th. Lackford Lakes: 18, Mar 13th. Lakenheath RSPB: 13, Mar 23rd and 24th. The highest count of the year involved a high passage count at Abbey Farm, Snape, with 75 on April 3rd; however only three were seen there just two days later on April 5th. Prime site totals included:Jan Feb Mar Sep Oct Nov Dec Minsmere* 14 3 16 18 12 2 7 North Warren* 50 Abbey Farm, Snape 8 7 14 25 35 38 Alde/Ore** 46 11 5 10 11 5 Deben 6 28 18 iS'-íí ~ 4 1 3 5 2 Orwell HW Orwell LW 5 2 7 2 Stour HW 14 5 36 11 Stour LW 4 8 *monthiy maxima, **includes Orfordness, HW-High Water, LW-Low Water Minsmere once again reported the first returning bird with a late-June record. Beccles Marshes, Minsmere and Pipps Ford all recorded single birds during July with Orfordness having five on July 28th. Gifford's Hall in Stoke-by -Nayland recorded 12 on August lst with only two other sites having double figures in August; North Warren had 25 on 18th and Orfordness 23 on 5th and 21 on 7th. Peak counts for the remaining months are as shown in the table apart from 13 at Lakenheath RSPB, November 16th and ten counted at both Giffords Hall, November 17th and Livermere Lake on December 12th. LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER Limnodromus scolopaceus Very rare visitor. Livermere Lake: May 4th to 6th. (P Wilson, J Walshe et al). Traditionally an autumn rarity this is the second spring record in recent years, the previous being on the Stour Estuary from mid-March into April, 2007. It is the first record for west Suffolk. There have now been seven Suffolk records of Long-billed Dowitcher involving eight individuáis and four records pre-1970 involving unidentified dowitchers. EURASIAN WOODCOCK Scolopax rusticóla Declining resident. Fairly common winter visitor andpassage migrant. Amber list. Two sites in the west of the County recorded displaying birds in 2012; up to six were reported from The King's Forest and four from Knettishall Heath. Records received in the first winter period came from 32 sites in the north-east, 27 in the 90



south-east and nine in the west of the county, with the majority of sightings referring to one to three birds. There were, however, some double-figure counts as follows:Corton: Sewage Works, 12, Feb 5th. Kessingland: Coopers Lañe, 35, Feb 6th. Near Halesworth: 40, Jan 31st.

Huntingfield: Hall, 15, Feb 19th. Westleton Walks: 17, Feb 7th. Minsmere: 12, Feb 7th.

Away from the breeding areas just three sites recorded single birds in April; Westleton, Minsmere and Holywells Park, Ipswich. In the west birds recorded in mid-May from both Mayday Farm and Santón Downham were presumably intending to breed in those areas. There were several reports in October with the first being at Minsmere on 12th. Orfordness recorded two on October 13th increasing to three by 21 st. In all, 13 sites reported October sightings (just three in 2011). Of these Minsmere had three on 28th while six were reported from Lound Waterworks on 30th. There were two birds caught and ringed at Landguard on 30th. There were 26 sites in the east and six in the west with late-winter sightings; Covehithe and Beccles reported three birds, while birds flushed during pheasant shoots included ten at Shotley on December 31 st and 40 at Ixworth, where fortunately only one was shot, December 15th. BLACK-TAILED GODWIT Limosa limosa L.l.islándico: Common winter visitor andpassage migrant. Amber list. L.l.limosa: Scarce visitor. Formerly bred. Red list. There was no hint of breeding activity this year with no records of displaying limosa males received during spring 2012. Away from the main sites triple-figure first winter records carne from (peak numbers):Oulton Marshes: 200, Feb 6th. Beccles Marshes: 150, Feb 2nd.

North Warren: Grazing Marshes, 300, Jan 22nd. Hollesley Marshes: 230, Feb 19th.

The west of the county fell a long way short of their record last year (400 in the Brett Valley in January) with 94 at Higham near Hadleigh on January 6th. Botany Farm, Farnham recorded 1480 on March lOth, while on April 12th, 1490 were counted nearby on the Alde Estuary near Iken cliffs. Other April figures of note included 96 at Minsmere on 8th and 800 at Burgh Castle Fíats on 14th. Data recorded during the course of WeBS and monthly counts:-

Blyth Aide / Ore Estuary Orfordness* Deben Orwell HW Orwell LW Stour LW Stour HW "monthly maxima

Jan 8 365 65

Feb Mar 116 209 980 525 7 83 _ 193 560 38 131 160 418 • 531 274 310 460 270 70 HW-High Water

Apr -

3 610 412

Aug -

344 45

Sep - •

49 691 671

Oct 107 -

8 665 256









462 LW-Low Water


Nov 24 -

30 373 138 235 803 -

Dee 40 -

5 187 20 56 608 -

May to July records show much lower numbers than in previous years with larger groups of 37 at Breydon South Fíats, June lOth, 46 at Minsmere on June 25th and 65 at Trimley Marshes on July 1 st. The Butley River held 180 on July 13th, with the highest figure for the period being 385 on Orfordness, 31 st. Inland numbers just crept into doublé figures with Lakenheath Fen recording 14 on July 6th, Higham 12, July 17th and Gifford's Hall, Stoke91

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 by-Nayland having ten on July 19th (rising to 24 by mid-August). Other August records were also disappointing with only Minsmere, Orfordness and the Butley River submitting triple-figures counts. Minsmere held good numbers during September peaking at 191 on 12th. Otherwise late winter records of note came from:Minsmere: 100, Oct 23rd; 101, Nov 21st. Farnham: Botany Farm, 600, Nov 4th. Havcrgate Island: 272, Oct 14th. Cattawade: 765, Dec 2nd. Stoke-by-Nayland: Gilford's Hall, 105, Nov 4th, the highest total of the year in west Suffolk. BAR-TAILED GODWIT Limosa lapponica Fairly common passage migrant and locally common winter visitor. Amber list. Counts from our top sites were:Jan Feb Mar Apr Sep Oct Nov Dec Ortbrdness* 39 6 42 0 15 10 0 76 Deben 0 27 14 34 102 33 63 13 ; Stour HW 391 262 48 89 Stour LW 195 261 184 86 •monthly maxima, HW- High Water, LW- Low Water First winter reports in the north of the county came from 11 sites, with Lowestoft having 18 birds on February 4th, Thorpeness 14, February 7th and Aldeburgh recording 62 on February 12th. The southern estuaries, as is usual, held the highest number of birds with the River Aide complex recording 152, February 9th, 122, March 1st and 177, March 26th. At Erwarton Ness on the Stour Estuary 240 were counted on February 12th. Spring passage was considerably lower than in 2011 with only double-figure counts recorded. The peak count of the period came from the Aide Estuary with 97 on April 12th. Walberswick recorded 43 on May 6th while Minsmere's best count was 32 on May 4th. Elsewhere Breydon South Flats reported 18 on May 30th, 26 were noted on the Deben Estuary on April 23rd and 25 flew north offLandguard on May 1st. Inland records came from Boxford with 23 flying over on April 25th and from Lackford Lakes where 20 were counted on April 29th. The last bird of the spring was reported from Minsmere on June 4th. Returning birds were first noted at Minsmere from June 21st with Orfordness and Landguard both recording birds on 30th. July records came from just seven sites and again numbers were on the low side with only Orfordness just reaching double figures with ten. Landguard provided the bulk of August's sightings mostly in single figures, although Thorpeness produced the best numbers passing with 60 on 15th and 100 on 25th. Orfordness held up to 14 birds during August. Minsmere had 21 birds on September 3rd and ten on 15th, Havergate Island recorded ten on September 8th and also had good totals towards the end of the year with 55, November 11th and 95, December 16th. There were 60 reported from Slaughden on December 21 st. WHIMBREL Numenius phaeopus Fairly common passage migrant. Occasionally overwinters. Red list. The first record of the year came from Thorpeness with a single flying north on April 2nd. There were just eight sightings in mid-April, including five on Orfordness, plus, inland, two at Barnham Cross and three at Lakenheath, April 19th. The main passage started on 21st, when eight sites recorded birds with Beccles reporting six and Landguard five. With what appears to be a three-year cycle, there were some large numbers in the north-east where significant counts came from:Breydon South Wall: 123, Apr 30th; 42, May 2nd; 50, May 5th; 80, May 7th. 92

Systematic List Burgh Castle Flats: 41, Apr 26th; 150, May 2nd highest total in Suffolk since 1996 when 224, Worlingham Marshes, Apr 29th. North Cove: Castle Marsh, 42, Apr 28th. Beccles Marshes: 50, May 6th.

Orfordness: 62, Apr 29th; 28, May 5th; 33, May 6th; 41, May 7th. In comparison in the south-east the highest tallies came from 14 sites with eight birds seen at each of Iken Cliffs on the Aide Estuary on April 26th, Havergate Island, May 3rd and Trimley Marshes, May 7th. Landguard recorded 18 in total in May. Inland three sites produced six sightings with the three birds, mentioned above, being seen at Lakenheath on April 19th. There was a cluster of mid-June sightings around the Felixstowe area with three recorded on 15th and two being seen on 20th. Kessingland recorded eight moving south on June 30th. July produced some double-figure counts with Thorpeness recording 12 on 9th and ten on 18th. Havergate Island recorded 13 on 19th and 20 on 23rd. Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick held 15 on July 31st while Minsmere recorded 21 on the same date. The autumn passage peaked at Landguard with 39 south on August 17th. The last record of the year was of two birds seen at Stutton Mill on the Stour Estuary on October 1st. EURASIAN CURLEW Numenius arquata Common winter visitor and passage migrant. A few pairs breed. Amber list. Recorded from eight Breckland sites during the breeding period, with three listed as probably breeding. What are now becoming regular are winter inland sightings with Lakenheath Fen holding seven birds at the end of January and three on February 4th. What were probably the first migrant birds were singles at Cavenham Heath, Livermere Lake and Troston, February 26th to March 2nd. Icklingham held ten birds on March 16th, while Cavenham Heath recorded eight on 18th. Counts at the principal estuarine sites were:-

Birth Aide/Ore Orfordness* Deben Orwell HW Orwell LW Stour LW Stour HW •monthly maxima

Jan Feb Mar 202 238 83 177 46 193 40 234 30 644 361 872 601 298 534 498 653 905 851 720 340 557 HW=High Water

Apr -

40 19 311 279

Sep -

150 -

526 456





Oct 105 176 -

464 594 -

470 LW=Low Water

Nov 75 38 60 397 546 437 792 -

Dec 94 105 511 527 94 365 373 -

In the north-east, Burgh Castle Flats had some notable first winter totals with 119, February 7th and 308, March 9th, while in the south Hollesley Marshes held 112, January 27th. Spring passage was recorded at Kessingland with 11 north, April 11th, Minsmere with 30 birds, April 30th and Landguard, 14 north, April 18th. With birds still flying north off Kessingland May 11 th to 21 st the first returning birds could have been four at Burgh Castle on May 29th and six at Breydon South Flats on May 30th. The latter site also recorded ten on June 10th. Peak movement commenced from June 15th when Landguard recorded 18 south. The main movement occurred during the end of June and the first week of July:Burgh Castle Flats: 17, July 3rd.

Kessingland: 15, June 20th; 42, June 26th; 26, June 28th; 21, July 2nd; 29, July 3rd. Minsmere: 12, June 22nd; 62, July 2nd; 20, July 6th. Thorpeness: 16, June 19th; 29, June 23rd; 16, June 24th; 31, June 25th; 16, July 2nd. Landguard: 13, June 19th; 46, June 26th; 60, June 30th; 63, July 4th. In total Landguard recorded 238 in June and 298 during July. The stand-out summer 93

Suffolk Bird Report 2012 gathering was of 480 at the roost on Shotley Marshes at Colton Creek Saltings, Orwell Estuary on July 14th. Notable late winter records apart from those in the table came from Burgh Castle Fiats with 50, October 6th, Abbey Farm, Snape, 95, November 7th rising to 102 on 18th, Hollesley Marshes, 84, November 28th and Botany Marshes, Farnham, 75, December 12th. The best autumn inland records came from Kentford, 15, September Ist and Lakenheath Fen with 12, October 30th. COMMON SANDPIPER Actitis hypoleucos Common passage migrant. Sometimes overwinters. Amber list. What was probably an overwintering bird was located at Carlton Marshes on February 7th; one was then seen at nearby Oulton Marshes on March 6th. This fits in with the normal pattern of wintering birds which tend to flit from site to site (Piotrowski, 2003). The next bird to appear was reported fromTrimley Marshes on March 2Ist. The first April records came on 15th at Alton Water and Redgrave Lake; other reports included three at Oulton Marshes on 30th and two at Minsmere on the same date. April records were also received from Cattawade in the south, 30th, Cavenham Pits, 16th and Mickle Mere, 20th and 28th. Early May brought a flurry of records with Minsmere holding four on 7th while further south Loompit Lake, Trimley St Martin recorded three during the first week as did Shotley Gate, over the river. The main migration took place from May 17th to 29th although there were no double-figure counts recorded. Minsmere reported six on 18th, Burgh Castle Fiats held eight on 19th, Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick recorded seven on 20th, while Orfordness had five, 26th. Inland figures peaked at three at Livermere Lake on 18th and 26th. The last birds of the spring were recorded at Benacre Broad, June 3rd and Loompit Lake, June 8th. The first birds of the autumn passage were two on the Minsmere Levels on June 26th. July records came from nine sites in the north-east, eight sites in the south and three sites in the west. Tinker's Marshes held the highest totals with six on 24th and seven on 28th. Orfordness held four, 3Ist, Havergate Island recorded four on 20th and Trimley Marshes had five, 24th. Nearly 100 widespread observations were received for August with double figures being logged at Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick with 12 on 7th and 14th and 15 on 1 Ith and 18th, while Havergate Island recorded 13 on 15th. Livermere Lake had the bulk of the birds from the nine sites in the west, peaking at four on 26th. The number of sightings decreased during September with just 28 records from 13 sites. The best of these were four at Flixton GravĂŠis Pits, Ist and 7th, four, Walberswick, 7th and four, Lake Lothing, 21 st. There were two October sightings; singles at East Lane, Bawdsey, 2nd and Livermere Lake, 4th. The last report of the year came from Aldringham Walks with an unusually high winter total of three, presumably wintering birds, being recorded on December 7th. GREEN SANDPIPER Tringa ochropus Fairly common passage migrant. Small numbers overwinter. Amber list. A glut of early winter records was received from 17 eastern sites and seven in the west, mostly composed of single birds but with two being seen at Gedgrave Marshes and Kirton Creek, while Flixton Gravel Pits peaked with three on January 15th and the Deben Estuary held three on January 28th. Spring passage started on March 8th with three birds inland at Tendring Hall, Stoke-byNayland. Needham Market then followed with two, 13th and 14th and Cavenham Pits had two birds on March 25th. In total 18 widespread sites recorded this species during spring migration. However, numbers were lower than in previous years with the highest total of just four on April Ist being recorded at Flixton Gravel Pits, where a single bird was reported May 4th to 6th. The only other May records came on the late (or early) date of 27th with a single at Mickle Mere and two birds at Lackford Lakes, possibly oversummering or non-breeding birds. Orfordness

Systematic List reported that this was its worst spring on record for this species. June 5th saw the first returning bird at North Warren while on June 9th, Orfordness reported two and Hollesley Marshes, one. Numbers increased throughout the month with both Beccles Marshes and Orfordness recording seven and Flixton Gravel Pits holding ten at the month's end. Inland sites outnumbered those from the coast by 14 to ten during July. However, actual records received were 21 birds and 51 respectively. Double-figure counts came from Flixton Gravel Pits with 14 on 9th, Belton Marshes, 14 on 28th and Abbey Farm, Snape with ten on 9th, while Minsmere peaked at seven on 28th and inland, Lackford Lakes had the highest total with seven on 5th. August started off with some good numbers including eight at Hollesley Marshes, 1st, nine at Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick, 7th, with tens at Flixton Gravel Pit, Tinker's Marshes and Abbey Farm, Snape, mid-month. Orfordness lead the way with some impressive totals: 15 on 9th increasing to 27 on 11th then 13 on 12th and 12 on 26th. Also on 26th, 15 were recorded at Gifford's Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland and nine were there on 30th. The 27 recorded on Orfordness on 11th is the highest total in Suffolk since July 27th 2006 when 28 were at Flixton Gravel Pits. As usual, September sightings declined, with records coming from a total of 16 sites. Gifford's Hall still held 12 on 1st but, elsewhere, figures were much reduced with Flixton Gravel Pits reporting five, 1st and Abbey Farm, Snape had seven, 4th and eight on 18th. Flixton Gravel Pits still held four birds on October 14th and Abbey Farm held two birds with records of singles coming from six other sites. Winter records came from ten sites with three birds being recorded on the Deben Estuary on November 7th and two at Flixton Gravel Pits on December 2nd. Pipps Ford, Needham Market and Alton Water recorded birds throughout November and December with Alton Water's WeBS counters recording three on December 16th. SPOTTED REDSHANK Tringa erythropus Fairly common passage migrant. A few overwinter. Amber list. Just 11 coastal sites recorded this species in the first winter period, compared with 24 in 2011. Most were of single birds with two being seen at only three sites - Dingle Marshes, Minsmere and Martlesham Creek. Passage during late March and April was very low with Dingle Marshes recording two on April 1st. Minsmere had four birds on April 5th and 14th, and three on April 11th. Further south Abbey Farm, Snape held two, March 30th and Martlesham Creek had three, March 31 st. There were only four May sightings from three sites with the first June record being of one on 12th at Trimley Marshes. Minsmere and Trimley Marshes had the monopoly during June and July with double figures being recorded at Minsmere with 12 on June 27th and 11, June 28th, while Trimley peaked at five birds on June 28th. The only other sites with records for these months were Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick with six, July 21st and one, July 24th and Orfordness on three dates with two on July 3rd, while both Havergate Island and the Deben Estuary recorded a single in mid-July. Reports came from ten sites during August and September with Minsmere again supplying the bulk of the records, with double-figure counts of 12, August 31st, ten, September 15th and 15, September 16th. Other counts came from Breydon South Flats with five, September 9th, Walberswick, five, August 14th and Orfordness with five on September 8th. A single bird flew over Holy wells Park in Ipswich on August 28th (B Stone). As with the first winter period a lower number of sites held this species during the late winter and also in lower numbers than 2011. Records were received from eight sites with the highest numbers being five at Dingle Marshes, November 18th, four on the Deben Estuary, October 25th and five on Dunwich Shore Pools on December 2nd. There were regular sightings at Abbey Farm, Snape throughout the year. 95

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 COMMON GREENSHANK Tringa nebularia Common passage migrant. A few overwinter. The Deben Estuary bird from December 2011 remained in the area and gave several birders a year tick on January 1 st at Melton. There were also records of what was probably the same bird along the Deben in January and February. Other birds were located at Iken to the north and Cattawade to the south throughout January and February. There were two records on February 25th, one at Abbey Farm, Snape (presumably the Iken bird) and one atTrimley Marshes (possibly one of the Stour birds). Two birds were recorded on the Stour WeBS counts in the first four months of the year. March sightings were restricted to the Deben Estuary on three dates, 2nd, 9th and 16th, two on the Stour WeBS count and a single sighting on Breydon South Wall on 2Ist. Two records on April 9th and 1 Ith kicked off a rather poor passage period with multiple records Coming in from:North Cove: Castle Marsh, four, Apr 29th. Minsmere: nine, May 4th; eight, May 5th; four, May 27th; 13, June 2nd. North Warren: three, May 20th. Orfordness: five, May 6th. Farnham: Botany Farm, three, May Ist; nine, May 2nd; four, May 4th; ten, May 6th. North Warren: three, May 20th. Hazlewood Marshes: three, Apr 20th. Boyton Marshes: three, May 19th. Woodbridge: Deben Estuary, five, May 3rd. Hollesley Marshes: four, May 2nd. Trimley Marshes: four, May 5th. Fiatford MUI: four, May 18th. Four inland sites recorded spring passage with Livermere Lake having two birds on May 25th. It is to be noted that only two double-figure records were made during 2012 compared with 11 in 2011 when the highest total was 40 at Hazlewood on May 2nd. Due to a spread of sites recording single birds throughout June it is difficult to separate those going and those coming back. However two at Minsmere on June 25th fits in well with returning birds from previous years. July 3rd also saw several multiple records with three being seen at both Minsmere and Trimley Marshes. Records carne from 16 sites during July with peak figures coming from Benacre, six, 17th, Minsmere, five, 26th, Iken, six, 2Ist, Havergate Island, six, 29th, Orfordness, seven, 15th and Stutton Mill, 11, 15th. August once again recorded the highest number of birds with records coming from 25 sites including four inland. Double-figure counts at Minsmere occurred from 16th to 29th peaking at 11, while Hazlewood Marshes recorded 12 on 18th. Elsewhere, Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick peaked at eight, 16th and 27th, Havergate Island recorded 16 on 15th, Orfordness had 13 on 5th and on the Deben Estuary at Woodbridge there were 12 on 28th. Both Mickle Mere and Gifford's Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland reported three birds during August, Gifford's Hall also having the only inland September record with two on Ist. During September, Minsmere continued to attract good numbers with eight on Ist, five, l l t h and four, 18th, dropping to singles at the month's end. Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick had four, Ist, Abbey Farm Snape, three on 4th and 12th, while five were present on the Deben Estuary on 29th. October reports carne from just three sites, Minsmere, Abbey Farm and the Deben Estuary, ali of singles apart from six at Abbey Farm on 27th and 28th, with three stili present on November 4th. Other November sightings included singles at Kessingland, 17th and Minsmere, 26th, with Abbey Farm recording a single up to December 12th. Also on 12th, presumably the same bird, was at Botany Farm, Farnham, the last report of the year.


Systematic List WOOD SANDPIPER Tritigli glareola Fairly common passage migrarti. Amber list. After a nine-year run of April sightings it was May 5th when the first record of 2012 carne in from Minsmere, the bird being seen again on 7th. This was followed by a single at Cattawade on 8th. A total of seven sites in the east and Mickle Mere in the west reported this species during what was a poor spring passage with nearly ali records being of single birds apart from a remarkable number on the River Stour on May 18th when six birds were at Cattawade and nearby Flatford Mill recorded ten, so exceeding Minsmere's 2011 spring record of nine. The first to return were two birds on June 30th on Orfordness followed by a single at Beccles Marshes on July 3rd, where on 6th a total of 13 was reported, the highest Suffolk total since 2004 (22 at Walberswick on August 12th). Flixton Gravel Pits, Minsmere, Abbey Farm, Snape and Trimley Marshes also recorded birds during the first week of July. At the end of the month both Minsmere and Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick held two birds. Seven sites had August records with Minsmere recording two birds on 2nd, three, 16th to 17th and four on 28th, while Trimley Marshes had two birds on 14th. In the west a single bird spent most of the month at Gifford's Hall, Stoke-by-Nayland. The last bird of the year, and only September sighting, was one at Minsmere on 6th. COMMON REDSHANK Trìnga totanus Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Declining resident. Amber list. There was a drop in the number of coastal sites with confirmed breeding this year, with just seven compared with 11 in 2011, involving 50 pairs as opposed to 85 in the previous year. Both Minsmere with 24 pairs and Orfordness with 14 to 17 maintained their norm but the lower overall number could be explained by some sites not submitting details. The bulk of the records carne from the southern estuaries. In the west, five sites had birds holding territory but breeding was not confirmed. Maximum numbers and WeBS data outside of the breeding season:Jan Feb Mar Apr Blyth 242 471 205 4 25 Minsmere 9 4 3 440 105 420 440 Aide/Ore 115 150 119 Orfordness* 208 Dcben 1049 815 986 985 Orwell HW 740 407 745 519 Orwell LW 1304 935 Stour HW 384 289 1328 674 Stour LW 1067 756 "monthly maxima, HW=High water, LW=Low Water

Aug -

10 250 -

Sep -

7 139 28 1029 627

Oct Nov 718 902 2 Jgtìà;; 87 221 45 301 1527 1356 238 264 1239











Dee 1082 3 15 333 865 314 1089 -


Breydon South Fiats recorded what were possibly 28 passage birds on June lOth. During the summer months records carne from 18 sites in the east with the Aide Estuary and Havergate Island recording up to 300 birds at the end of July. Landguard Bird Observatory recorded birds flying south from early August while Gifford's Hall, Stoke-byNayland and Livermere Lake also recorded inland passage from 6th. There were few reports from the late winter apart the table above. Lakenheath Fen recorded the sole inland record, a single bird on November 6th. RUDDY TURNSTONE Arenaria interpres Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Reported from six sites in the north-east and 12 in the south in the first winter period with the Stour Estuary again recording the highest totals. 97

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 Counts at the principal estuarine and coastal sites were:Lowestoft* Aide/Ore Deben Orwell HVY Orwell LW Stour HW Stour LW "monthly maxima

Jan Feb Mar 24 29 30 28 45 9 77 92 91 73 36 37 127 111 152 121 123 447 225 HW=High Water

Apr 85

Aug 38

Sep 10 65 51

Oct 25 27 56 46 -

Nov 27 40 98 23 112

Dec 30 16 76 34 177



215 LW=Low Water

Orfordness reported a single bird on June 3rd, while Gorleston Pier recorded four on the same date. They also had the only other June record with a single on 30th. Return passage was first recorded from July 13th at Havergate and Landguard while Orfordness recorded ten south on July 14th. The sole inland record in 2012 came from Lakenheath Fen/Washes with five on August 25th. RED-NECKED PHALAROPE Phalaropus lobatus Rare passage migrant. Red list. There was one record in 2012, a brief appearance from an early-returning bird at Minsmere on July 2nd (G Driver). GREY PHALAROPE Phalaropus fulicarius Scarce passage migrant and rare winter visitor. As in 2011, just two locations recorded this species in 2012. One was on the coast at Thorpeness on September 30th (D Thurlow), whilst inland one bird was present at Livermere Lake on December 2nd and 3rd (P M Wilson). The Livermere bird was the first inland since 1986 when one was at Thorington Street Reservoir, Stoke-by-Nayland, October 29th. POMARINE SKUA Stercorarius pomarinus Uncommon passage migrant. A few overwinter At the very start of the year a few were noted off the Suffolk coast; two were off Thorpeness, January 1 st when one flew north then it or another flew south and another was seen off Felixstowe Ferry the same day and one or the same bird was seen from Bawdsey. The following day one was noted off Ness Point, Lowestoft. Singles were recorded off Minsmere beach and Landguard, both on January 4th. Most of the other records made at this time of the year were from Thorpeness up until February 15 th. Spring migration started with three north off Felixstowe Undercliff, April 18th. Further north six were seen from Thorpeness, April 29th and 12 north there the next day. Also on 30th nine flew north past Ness Point, Lowestoft including a flock of seven together. Return migration was more sedate and protracted. Most of the records were made from Thorpeness; multiple occurrences seen from there included four, August 11th, five, October 8th and 11th and seven October 26th. Away from Thorpeness other sightings were made from Lowestoft, Kessingland and Southwold. Towards the end of the year five flew north past Thorpeness, November 12th and the last record of the year was of one off Thorpeness, December 29th. ARCTIC SKUA Stercorarius parasiticus Decreasing passage migrant. A few overwinter. Red list There was only one winter record, of a singleton off Kessingland, January 3rd. It flew north at 09:5Q then returned south 30 minutes later (P Read). Spring sightings didn't start until eight flew north off Thorpeness, April 25th. Apart from 98

Systematic List that record it was a typically quiet spring with only eight other birds seen before the end of May. An inland record was made at Livermere Lake, May 7th, when five dark adults or nearadults flew low to the northeast at 16:15hr (L Gregory). These are the first Arctic Skuas in west Suffolk since 2007 when one was at Lakenheath Fen, July 6th, and this is the first-ever multiple inland record in the county. Return passage was unusually quiet, especially during July and the majority of August. During July a total of just 13 records was recorded, the highest being three and two past Thorpeness and Kessingland respectively on 16th and two offThorpeness on 27th. Things did pick up slightly into August with ten and 16 past Thorpeness on 11th and 12th respectively. Further south in the county, five were seen off Landguard, August 17th including a notable occurrence of four mobbing a Marsh Harrier. There was a sudden upturn in records in the last two days of the month with 53 south past Thorpeness on 30th and 12 past Lowestoft the same day. The following day 20 were noted past Corton. During September things quietened down but there were still a few reports from the usual watch-points of Kessingland and Thorpeness. There was a peak in numbers towards the end of the month with 18 and 15 seen off Ness Point and Thorpeness on 23rd, a day when good numbers of the other skua species were seen. Later in the autumn sightings declined but some multiple records were still being made in the north of the county, including four off Ness Point, two off Kessingland and two off Minsmere Beach, October 8th. The last record of the year was of two off Sizewell, November 29th. LONG-TAILED SKUA Stercorarius longicaudus Uncommon passage migrant As with 2011, there was a sole spring sighting, an adult summer bird flying north past Thorpeness, April 29th (D Thurlow). Return passage started two weeks earlier than in 2011 and featured some superb counts, including double-figure day-totals towards the end of both August and September past Thorpeness which included 14 flying south in two hours, August 30th including a flock of eight!. All autumn sightings are as follows; Gorleston-on-sea: south, Sep 23rd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Corton: two north, Aug 31st (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Lowestoft Ness: north, 06:55hr, Aug 31st (A Easton); north, Sep 12th (B Small); north, Sep 23rd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Kessingland: four south, Aug 30th (P Read, C Darby); two south, 07:05hr, Aug 31 st (P Read, C Darby); two south, Sep 22nd (P Read). Southwold: juv south, 17:00hr,Sep 16th (S. Howell); south, Sep 17th (M Riley). Thorpeness: juv south, Aug 12th (D Thurlow); north, Aug 19th (D Thurlow); 11 south, Aug 26th (D Thurlow); 14 south, 17:30-19:30hr, Aug 30th (C Fulcher); two, Sep 30th (D Thurlow, S Mayson); 12 south, 06:45-10:20hr, Sep 23rd (S. Abbott). Shingle Street: juv south, Aug 30th (P Kennerley). Felixstowe: three south, Aug 30th (P Oldfield). GREAT SKUA Stercorarius skua Fairly common passage migrant. A few overwinter. Amber list. Seen in ten of the 12 months during 2012. Most records made were ofjust singletons that were seen in the first half of the year but numbers started to increase towards the end of April during spring passage that included four past Landguard April 19th and four past Felixstowe Undercliffe, April 25th. Further north up the coast three were seen off Thorpeness, May 6th. Mostly single records were then made until the end of September. Return passage saw numbers increase including 12 offThorpeness and the same number observed off Orfordness, September 23rd. Just as with 2011, October was the best month to see 'Bonxies' with a large southbound passage noted, the undoubted highlight being an incredible 80 seen offThorpeness, 14 off Lowestoft Ness and 12 off Minsmere on October 99

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 8th. Following this, 16 and nine were seen off Thorpeness, October 11th and 15th respectively. The 80 seen off Thorpeness is the highest individual site day-total ever recorded in Suffolk. Elsewhere in the county, peak day-counts included six off Kessingland, October 17th and nine off Southwold, October 26th. Throughout November several singletons were recorded, mostly from Kessingland where three birds were seen on December 3rd. The last records of the year were singletons off Kessingland, December 27th and Thorpeness, December 31st. SABINE'S GULL Xema sabini Rare passage migrant A slight improvement on 2011 with up to four sightings made, all on the same morning. Lowestoft: Ness Point, juv, 10:50 and 1 l:25hr, probably same bird lingering, Sep 23rd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Thorpeness: two north, 08:05hr; two north, 09:50hr, Sep 23rd (L Woods, S Mayson). BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKE Rissa tridactyla Very common passage migrant and winter visitor. Small numbers breed. Amber list It was a busy start to the year with good day-totals being counted of birds moving offshore. Highlights were 430 off Thorpeness, January 1st and 153 off Kessingland, January 3rd. The following week 550 were seen from Thorpeness, most heading north, January 9th. These high day-counts were maintained until mid-January with 338 and 360 north off Thorpeness on 15 th and 16th respectively. From this point onwards numbers seen off the Suffolk coast tailed off dramatically with day-counts mostly staying in single figures with the occasional doublefigure-count off the regular watch-points of Thorpeness and Kessingland. Numbers did pick up slightly in April with a notable count of 389 mostly north past Thorpeness, April 29th. Breeding at Lowestoft Harbour resulted in 152 young being fledged from 95 nests, This would have been higher but what was thought to be a Herring Gull, a species which nests commonly on nearby rooftops, predated up to 55 nests at the chick stage. The nesting birds further south on the Claremont Pier reared 41 young from 28 nests. Further down the coast at Sizewell, the redundant offshore rigs housed 95 nests on the near rig and 102 nests on far rig as observed from the beach. As with 2011 the bulk of late-summer and autumn sightings came from both Kessingland and, especially, Thorpeness, with numbers picking up in July and August. Peak counts from Thorpeness included 158, July 18th, 204, August 11th and 179, August 12th. The majority of the August sightings were heading north whereas in July they were heading south. Towards the end of the year sightings declined to mostly single-figure day-counts, with the exception of 109 and 164 mostly heading south past Thorpeness, December 23rd and 29th respectively. BLACK-HEADED GULL Chroieocephalus ridibundus Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. At the start of the year, Orfordness logged a count of 382, mainly offshore, January 15 th and the following month, 86 flew north off Thorpeness, February 17th. At the Aide Estuary/Snape Common area, 1,100 were noted, January 27th. A roost of 465 was at Alton Water, February 12th. Further inland the usual large roosts gathered with an estimated 10,000 around Livermere Lake, January 9th but with no large roosts noted at Lackford Lakes. Other notable counts included 3,500 at Livermere Lake again, February 18th and 28th. Towards the coast some good counts were made during WeBS surveys especially at Minsmere and on the Aide Estuary. During spring passage this species was under-recorded but a maximum day-count of 77 was recorded off Landguard, April 21st. Breeding attempts saw a good year with 1,303 nests counted at Minsmere but it was estimated as many as 2,000 could have been present, with 4361 birds counted on April 22nd, which must have been a sight to see, let alone hear! On Orfordness, a minimum of 89 pairs 100

Systematic List nested, the highest number of breeding pairs since 2001, but not a single youngster fledged, many eggs being incubated but predated during this stage or soon after hatching. Breeding at Mickle Mere was affected by the wet summer and high water levels, but two chicks did fledge and 30 nests were at Livermere Lake. Breeding was also confirmed at Lackford Lakes, and Hall Farm, Fornham St Martin. During the autumn 127 were noted south past Landguard, October 8th. The largest count of the autumn, and the year, at Orfordness was made in October, with 750 on 27th. The same day 2,500 were seen to fly south offThorpeness. Winter roosts typically were recorded in coastal estuaries and west Suffolk. Livermere Lake again, like the first winter period, held the monopoly of roosting birds, with 7,000 and 8,000 noted, December 13th and 25th respectively. Elsewhere 900 were at Lackford Lakes, December 3rd. In coastal Suffolk, 674 and 877 were recorded on the Deben Estuary during WeBS counts in November and December respectively. Away from these main areas, 1,600 were at Botany Farm, Farnham, December 12th. LITTLE GULL Hydrocoloeus minutus Fairly common passage migrant. Regularly oversummers. Small numbers overwinter. Amber list. At the start of the year, there were two notable inland records of single first-winter birds at Livermere Lake and Lackford Lakes, January 8th and February 2nd respectively. Further sightings were made in both the Ampton/Livermere Lake area, March 13th and 17th. At the coast numbers were low except for a spike in numbers with 32 south off Thorpeness, February 5th. Otherwise five were off Kessingland, January 31st and three offThorpeness the following day. Like the previous two years, spring passage was very quiet with just single-figure inland and coastal counts. In west Suffolk the highlight was four at Lackford Lakes and two at Weybread Gravel Pits near Harleston (Norfolk), March 24th there having been two at Cavenham Pits the day before then just singles at Livermere and Lackford up to April 10th. At the coast one or two birds were noted at Minsmere on various dates from April 12th until May 19th, increasing to five, May 23rd and 24th. Further south three were at Stutton Mill, April 25th. As expected, numbers built up during late summer with 22 at Minsmere, July 8th rising to 62 by July 19th. The following month numbers at Minsmere peaked at 83, August 11th with 70 still present, August 27th. A lot of these birds presumably fed around the Sizewell Rigs at this time with 57 counted off there, August 14th. Eighty-three were noted at Aldringham Walks, August 11th. Further into the autumn, numbers dropped with the highlights being 23 and 42 seen off Ness Point, October 8th and 10th respectively and another 16 and 19 off Thorpeness, October 25th and 26th. Inland, an adult at Lakenheath Fen RSPB was the sole record, November 7th. At the end of the year three were off Landguard, December 24th and four were offThorpeness, December 31 st. Apart from those sightings this species was very scarce during November and December. MEDITERRANEAN GULL Larus melanocephalus Uncommon resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Rare breeder. Amber list. During the first three months of the year, sightings were mostly made in the north-east of the county with eight at Gorleston-on-sea, January 5th and five on Pakefield Beach, January 22nd rising to 17, February 16th which consisted of six on the beach and another 11 offshore. In the south-east of the county the bulk of sightings were at either Landguard or Felixstowe with six off Felixstowe, January 3rd and six at Landguard, February 3rd. As March progressed sightings started to be made at Minsmere and double-figure counts were first made in April, with 18 present on 1 st. There was no repeat of the numbers seen here in 2011, with the maximum day-count for May and June being eight, June 28th. This is sharply down on the same time in 2011 when 57 birds were noted and in 2010 when 37 were present. Four Pairs attempted to breed at Minsmere but no young fledged successfully. There were no 101

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 other breeding reports from anywhere else in the county. In recent years in late summer some large flocks have been witnessed, often swelled by birds from other areas and Europe and 170 were noted at the practice greens at Southwold Golf course, July 15th (B Small) exceeding the previous county record total of 143 noted at Gorleston in 2011. Similar flocks can also be found over the border in Norfolk. Later that month 35 were noted nearby at Southwold Town Marshes. Elsewhere Mediterranean Gull Su Gough in the county large flocks were found with 43 counted on the roof of Corton sewage works, September 6th and in the south-east of the county, 19 were at Landguard, September 4th. Passage movements included 99 that flew south past Pakefield Beach between 13:00 and 15:00hr, September 15th and 14 were counted on the sea off Gunton Beach, September 21 st. In the final three months of the year most sightings came from the north-east of the county, the main sites being Pakefield and Lowestoft North and Gunton Beaches, where low single-figure-totals were observed. The last notable count of the year was of six in the car park off Links Road, Lowestoft, December 5th. Typically, in the west of the county this species was very scarce with only single birds recorded at Livermere Lake, February 26th and 28th; May 17th to 20th; July 24th and December 29th. Other sightings were at Mickle Mere, April 9th; Gifford's Hall, Stoke-byNayland, October 14th and Lackford Lakes, December 9th. COMMON GULL Larus canus Very common winter visitor and passage migrant. Scarce breeding species. Amber list. During the first winter period, 900 were at Church Farm, Covehithe, January 15th. Further south, 1,300 were noted in the Aide Estuary and Snape Common area, January 27th. The following month an amazing 20,000 were counted by Brian Small on the Blyth Estuary, February 2nd, which obliterated the previous county record of about 12,000, seen there in 2011. Further south at Landguard, 1,000 were noted, February 7th. Counts for west Suffolk in comparison were much lower compared with 2011 with 300 noted at Cavenham pits, January 8th and a similar number flew over Little Cornard, presumably to roost, on January 16th. Very few records were made during the summer months but a few did start to appear with 45 noted inland at Little Cornard on July 18th. Numbers slowly increased with 24 and 12 at Alton Water, August 19th and September 16th respectively. Offshore 1,000 flew south past Thorpeness, October 26th. In the second winter period, 180 were at roost at Lackford Lakes on December 18th which was a low count for that site, compared with 600 for the same site at almost the same time in 2011. In the south-east of the county, 1200 were at Botany Farm, Farnham, 300 at Alton Water and 571 on the Aide Estuary all on December 16th. LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL Larus fuscus Very common summer visitor and passage migrant. Increasing numbers overwinter. Amber list. During the first winter period numbers increased as this species returned from its wintering grounds in southern Europe. In west Suffolk, 225 were at Cavenham Pits, January 8th and 500, Elveden, February 28th. By March, 428 were at Livermere Lake on 9th, with 500 on nearby pig-fields on 15th, and 321 still at Livermere on 30th. During coastal WeBS 102

Systematic List counts the highlight was 1,586 on Havergate Island, March 11th. Breeding was attempted alongside the Herring Gulls on Orfordness and 640 pairs were estimated to be present but only a small number of chicks fledged and a lot were subsequently predated. This species also bred around the docks area at Landguard and also in good numbers on the rooftops of the industrial and domestic buildings in and around central Lowestoft causing the usual hot topic of debate amongst the human residents. Four pairs nested at Minsmere but no young fledged. Inland breeding was confirmed at Bury St Edmunds, where several pairs frequented the roof of the council offices, and four young, close to fledging, were observed on July 9th. During the summer, inland gatherings included 1,500 at Livermere Lake, July 31st and August 9th. In the second winter period, 800 were at Great Livermere, October 14th and later 500 were noted on pig fields near there, November 4th. At the coast 88 were recorded on the Aide Estuary, November 18th. Numbers fell away dramatically after this date across the county as this species undertook its usual short migration further south into Europe. Any remaining birds were well dispersed with no large single gatherings. On July 15th there were 13 birds of the race intermedins on the Great Livermere pig fields. Corrections 2011: The peak count at Livermere Lake was 5,050 on August 9th in what was an exceptional year for the species at this site. Baltic Gull Larus fuscus fuscus A near-adult bird roosting at Lackford between February 5th and March 27th was generally considered to be a good candidate for fuscus, although obviously intermedius could not be ruled out with certainty. Three different second calendar-year individuals, showing some characteristics of this form were watched at Livermere Lake between July 9th and 31st ( P M Wilson). HERRING GULL Larus argentatus Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Red list. At the start of the year 110 was the maximum January count at Orfordness with the February maximum only 41. In the west of the county, 80 were at Lackford Lake, January 22nd. Further into the spring, 129 were at Livermere Lake April 9th and a very good count of 5000 was logged at Landguard, March 7th. Breeding took place at Felixstowe Docks with unknown success. At Orfordness as many as 50 successfully fledged from around 95 pairs; most of the success was on the 'pagoda' and the Cobra mist buildings, out of reach of foxes. As with the closely-related Lesser Blackbacked Gull, Herring Gulls nested widely on the rooftops of central Lowestoft where many chicks were fledged but there was no information on numbers. During the second winter period roosts gathered and at the coast, 419 were recorded at Havergate Island on December 16th. Further south at Landguard 300 were present, December 23rd. On the Deben Estuary 112 were recorded, October 16th and thereafter, 40 and 56 were noted, November 18th and December 16th respectively. There were no notable counts in west Suffolk. YELLOW-LEGGED GULL Larus michahellis Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Small numbers oversummer. Amber list. During the first winter period, gatherings included eight on the Blyth Estuary, January 7th and five present, January 21st. Other places with at least one sighting were the Minsmere Levels with up to two being seen throughout January and February and at Oulton Broad two were also seen, January 22nd. Numbers rose at Minsmere to five, March 16th. In the south-east of the county, Landguard hosted four on March 18th and five on 20th. 103

Suffolk Bird Report 2012 In the west of the county, numbers were lower than in 2011 but 2011 was in itself an exceptional year. A maximum count of six was made at Cavenham Pits, January 6th and six were at Livermere Lake, April 2nd. Elsewhere in west Suffolk, up to four were at Lackford Lakes, January 29th and two passage birds were at Mickle Mere, April 24th. Numbers in late summer started to build with birds arriving from the continent. An early high count of 17 was on Minsmere Scrape, June 20th, with the next highest counts there being of six, June 29th and five, July 7th. Away from the coast two were at Flixton Gravel Pits, June 27th and July 28th. Even further west, ten were at Livermere Lake, July 4th, 23 on July 13th and 15 there on August 15th. and 11 there on August 4th. Throughout the autumn most records at the coast came from Minsmere with the occasional records from Gorleston and Lowestoft. In the west of the county, records were heavily, if not exclusively, centred around the Livermere Lake area with 13 present, September 27th. At the end of the year in the west of the county, 20 were at Livermere Lake, October 14th, 11 were at Little Livermere, November 20th and ten, mostly adults were at Lackford Lakes, December 29th. At the coast most records centred on Minsmere Scrape where eight were present, October 27th and seven, November 12th - in each case all but one were adults. None was seen in the south of the county between August and the end of the year. Correction 2011: The peak summer count at Great Livermere was 54 on July 17th. CASPIAN GULL Larus cachinnans Scarce winter visitor. Over the course of the year 12 separate individuals were noted at Livermere Lake either on the lake or nearby pig field (P M Wilson). Peak day-counts included three at the Lackford Lakes roost, January 22nd, two of which were seen at Livermere earlier that day (P M Wilson). Elsewhere two were at Cavenham Pits, January 2nd (L Gregory). In the north-east of the county, an adult and second-winter were seen, on occasions together, at Minsmere, January 28th (J Grant) and February 24th (D Fairhurst). Elsewhere first-winters were noted on the Blyth Estuary on January 14th and 21st (B Small) and another at Gorleston Harbour, February 18th (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Judging by the raw data it seems the bulk of the sightings were of a second-winter and a third-winter touring the main wetland sites. During March, numbers at Minsmere peaked at seven for just one day, 9th (D Fairhurst). At Landguard a second-winter was present, March 24th and 25th (C Fulcher et al.). A single in near-adult plumage was at Livermere Lake on March 30th and a second calendaryear bird on May 27th (PM Wilson). During the early summer, three were at Minsmere, June 20th (D Fairhurst), one of which was a Polish-ringed bird also seen there during May. At Landguard what was possibly the same first-summer was present, July 26th and August 10th (G Bennett, P Oldfield, J Zantboer et al.). During the autumn, a first-winter was on Lowestoft North Beach, September 8th (A Easton), two adults were on the Blyth Estuary, September 11th (B Small) and later in the year, a first-winter and a third-winter bird were on Minsmere Scrape, November 12th (J Grant). Further inland one was at Botany Farm, Farnham, December 8th and 10th (D Fairhurst). In west Suffolk, at Livermere Lake an adult and first-winter were seen, December 29th (L Gregory) the only inland multiple occurrence during the second winter period. Correction 2011: Caspian Gulls were recorded on 41 dates, at Livermere Lake and pig-fields nearby between February 12th and December 29th with a maximum of three on any one date, and including three different juveniles. The observer considered that many different individuals were involved (P M Wilson).

Systematic List ICELAND GULL Larus glaucoides Scarce winter visitor. Amber list. Dominated by the long-staying adult in the Lowestoft area it was a very good year for Iceland Gulls considerably putting its bigger white-winged cousin, the Glaucous Gull, in the shade. Judging by the number and spread of sightings as many as ten different birds were in the county. There were some records from the west of the county at a spread of inland sites amounting to at least two or three different birds alone:Lowestoft: adult long-stayer around the Harbour area, Pakefield Beach and Oulton Broad, Jan 5th until Apr 22nd (Mark Ellis, Lowestoft Lounge Lizards et al. ); second-winter, Links Road beach car park, probably same bird recorded north past Kessingland the previous day, Feb 12th (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Kessingland: second-winter north 09:40hr, Feb 11th ( P Read). Benacre: first- or second-winter over, Mar 15th (C Darby). Landguard: adult. Mar 8th (P Oldfield); first-winter, Mar 12th to 14th (P Oldfield, J Zantboer). Cavenham Pits: adult, Jan 9th (L Gregory). Elveden: two, first-winter and third-winter on private reservoir, Mar 20th ( C A E Kirtland). Lackford Lakes: adult, Jan 5th (M Offord); second-winter, Feb 28th (Breckland Birding Group), same bird seen at Livermere Lake that day. Livermere Lake: third-winter, Feb 26th (L Gregory); second-winter, Feb 28th (M Peers). Great Livermere: pig-fields, first-winter, Nov 10th; first-winter, Nov 29th (P M Wilson). Mickle Mere: adult, Mar 31st in almost full adult plumage (N Moran).

GLAUCOUS GULL Larus hyperboreus Scarce winter visitor. Amber list. 2012 was a very quiet year for this species. The Felixstowe area records almost certainly accounted for a single bird there in mid-March. Further north up to three different birds were seen. There were no records from west Suffolk. All sightings as follows:Gorleston: first-summer north from pier, Apr 22nd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Lowestoft: first-winter in Harbour, Feb 3rd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Vlinsmere: first-winter on Scrape, Feb 13th (R Drew). Orfordness: third-summer, Apr 22nd (M Marsh). Felixstowe: third-winter in Docks, Mar 16th (S Abbott). Landguard: third-winter, Mar 15th and 17th (P Oldfield, J Zantboer). Trimley Marshes: un-aged, Apr 1st (Birdguides).

Correction 2011: Livermere Lake: second calendar-year, Apr 21st (T Humpage), not adult as previously published.

GREAT BLACK-BACKED GULL Larus marinus Common winter visitor and passage migrant. A few oversummer. Has recently bred. Amber list. In the west of the county, throughout both winter periods, the monopoly of sightings was made at Lackford Lakes including 84, January 15th, rising to 115, January 21 st falling back to 83 the following day. These gatherings were higher than normal for this species and come after a 'scarce' year in 2011. Outside the winter periods two were noted at Livermere Lake, July 2nd. A breeding attempt was made at a coastal site but the nest was predated before the eggs hatched. It was noted that it was the first breeding attempt at that site since 2005. On the coast, at Havergate Island, 56 and 62 were noted during WeBS counts, February 12th and March 11th respectively. In the second winter period, 84 were on Havergate Island, November 18th. Away from the wetland sites only single-figure counts were made. During December there was a drop in numbers across the county with single-figure counts at all sites. LITTLE TERN Sternuta albifrons Common summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. The first of the year was noted off Felixstowe on April 17th, with the next at Minsmere 105

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 on 22nd. The first multiple eount was of three at Minsmere on Aprii 23rd, with the main arrivai occurring during the first ten days of May. Definite breeding attempts were only reported from two sites, and with complete failure at one site and no news of the outcome at the other, the future of this species as a breeding species in Suffolk does not look very bright. At Benacre Broad, where large numbers of adults had gathered in May, uncontrolled dogs running along the edge of the Broad certainly didn't help matters. Breeding Site Kessingland Benacre Dingle Marshes Walberswick Minsmere Sudbourne Shingle Street

No. of Pairs 50 Nil ?

Fledged Young Nil Nil 7



? 5+

Remarks Colony abandoned by July 15th. Up to 150 adults present in May. No détails No détails No détails No détails Unknown outcome

Good numbers were seen passing north and south past Kessingland and Gorleston during July and up to August 18th, after which there was an abrupt décliné. Many of these could have been feeding birds from the colonies in east Norfolk, as there were many north-bound as well as south-bound movements noted. The highest single-day-count was of 266 past Kessingland on August 9th, with 122 heading north and 144 south. Just five birds were recorded in September, with one south past Gorleston and two south past Landguard on lst, and the final two south past Landguard on 24th. None was recorded in the west of the county during 2012. CASPIAN TERN Hydroprogne caspia Rare visitor. One was present on the South Scrape at Minsmere between 15:12 and 15:50 on July 6th, after which it departed to the south (J H Grant, P J Woolnough et al.). This is the 47th county record and the first since 2005. Accepted Record 1973 The following record for 1973 has been accepted by BBRC:Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia: Minsmere, adult, Aug 2nd (R D Goater et al.). BLACK TERN Chlidonias niger Fairly common passage migrant. A total of 15 passed through the county during spring migration between Aprii 25th, when three were at Weybread Gravel Pits, and May 19th. As is usuai in spring the vast majority were away from the coast. Ail spring records are listed below:Minsmere RSPB: Apr 29th.

Weybread G.P.: three, Apr 25th; May 4th. Snape: Abbey Farm, May 4th. Landguard: north, May 18th. Trimley Marshes: Apr 29th. Lackford Lakes: May 18th. Livermere Lake: three, May 19th. Lakenheath Fen RSPB: Apr 26th; two, May 18th.

Returning birds were first noted from August 9th, and very small numbers were reported regularly through until August 31 st, with four being the highest count at any site. There was just one record after this, a Ione bird past Southwold on September 23rd. 106



Overall the autumn passage was pretty poor with only around 30 individuals being reported; this compares with around 200 in 2011 and 80 in 2010. All bar one were along the coast, the exception being at Lakenheath Fen RSPB on August 18th. WHITE-WINGED BLACK TERN Chlidonias leucopterus Rare passage migrant. An adult beginning to moult out of summer plumage was discovered and photographed on the Levels at Minsmere on July 28th. It also ventured to the Scrape, but its stay on the reserve was brief, and it was last seen heading westward in the direction of Eastbridge. On the following day, July 29th, an adult with, judging from photographs, a very similar pattern of moult, and so probably the same bird, was discovered at the dam end of Alton Water. It remained there throughout the day and was still present on 30th. Also on July 29th another moulting adult was present on Orfordness; this bird was in a more advanced state of moult (M Marsh, D Crawshaw). These constitute the 37th and 38th Suffolk records, involving a total of 56 birds. 2011 Correction: There were two White-winged Black Terns at Minsmere in 2011, not one as stated:Minsmere: Scrape, Apr 30th to May 3rd 2011. Minsmere: Main Reedbed, May 30th 2011. SANDWICH TERN Sterna sandvicensis Common passage migrant; declining summer visitor. Amber list. The first spring migrants appeared on March 26th with one past Thorpeness and three at Tinker's Marshes, Walberswick, with the main arrivais noted from April Ist. The highest count in the spring was of 62 at Minsmere Scrape on April 22nd, but numbers dropped to single figures by the end of April. Sadly there were again no breeding attempts reported in the county, and none was reported from West Suffolk this year. The table below shows monthly movements past two well-watched coastal sites. Kessingland Thorpeness

Apr 15N 16S 28N 2S

Mav 23N 6S 19N 6S

Jun 90N 24S 42N 18S

Jul 139N 37S 49N 42S

Aug 85N 58S 51N 210S

Sep 161N I07S 35N 233S

Oct 2N 3S 9N 3S

Nov -

The peak of the autumn passage was generally later this year, with more September records than in recent years, with the peak day-count of the autumn being 169 south past Thorpeness on September 18th. Despite this, the main passage itself was pretty much over by October 8th, with only two more birds seen after this date, both on October 14th, at Thorpeness and along the Deben Estuary. A fairly typical last date after the late October and early November records from 2011. COMMON TERN Sterna hirundo Fairly common summer visitor; common passage migrant. Amber list. The first of the year was a Ione individuai at Minsmere on April 9th, two days later than the first record in 2011, and eight days later than in the three years prior to that. The first returning bird in the west of the county was at Lackford on April 17th. The first double-figure-count of the year was of 20 on April 18th at Minsmere, where numbers had increased to 56 on 26th. The incomplete breeding information received is summarized below:Minsmere: nesting pairs noted but no counts submitted.


Suffolk Birci Report 2012 Orfordness: pair nested unsuccessfully on the newly-created reservoir on King's Marshes. This was noted as being probably the first confirmed breeding of this species at Orfordness since the 1960s. Alton Water: 67 young ringed; probable prĂŠdation by Otters is thought to have reduced the success rate. Lackford Lakes: two pairs on nest rafts. At least one juvenile fledged. Counts at well-watched coastal sites are detailed b e l o w : -

Kessingland Thorpeness

Apr ON 2S 32N 4S

May 45N I OS 28N 16S

Jun 25N 52S 69N 36S

Jul 187N 232S 113N 288S

Aug 216N 587S 348N 5435S

Sep 128N 40S 20N 52S

Oct ON OS 3N 4S

Southbound migrants were noted from mid-July but passage was generally a couple of weeks later than in 2011 and did not really pick up until the beginning of August. There was a steady passage throughout the month of August, with high counts from Thorpeness of 804 on 12th, 742 on 19th and 730 on 26th, the vast majority of them heading south. There was then a late surge on 30th when 1639 were counted south past Thorpeness. The autumn migration was a less protracted affair this year with far fewer being recorded in September and October, with the final report of two past Thorpeness on October 12th. In 2011 the tail end of migration had continued throughout October and into early November, with late individuals also seen in early December. ROSEATE TERN Sterna dougallii Scarce passage migrant. Red list. Although the number recorded remained around the recent average, the species was only recorded from three sites and the majority occurred in a three-day period in July. Minsmere was again the best place to catch up with this species in Suffolk, but none oversummered this year, or attempted to breed. Lowestoft: North Beach, adult, July 17th; two adults and juvenile, July 18th (multi-observers). Minsmere: June 30th to July 3rd; July 12th; July 18th; four adults and juvenile, July 19th (multi-observers). Landguard: May 23rd (W J Brame, N Odin, E W Patrick).

Given the scarcity of this species in Suffolk it seems safe to assume that the juvenile and its escorts at Lowestoft on July 18th were amongst the birds seen at Minsmere on July 19th. So probably around seven or eight individuals were involved in the sightings this year. 2003 6

2004 3

Total of Roseate Terns reported 2003-2012 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 7 10 10 4+ 10+ 5

2011 6+

2012 7-8

ARCTIC TERN Sterna paradisaea Fairly common passage migrant. Occasionally breeds. Amber list. Singles at Livermere Lake on April 17th and at Lackford Lakes on April 19th were then followed by an arrival of a total of 75 along the coast and inland on April 24th, including 27 at Livermere Lake where 28 were present. May 2nd. Around 180 were recorded between April 17th and June 4th, with around 80 of them passing through the far west of the county. This compares with around 220 recorded in the spring of 2011. However in that year most had passed through by May 12th. The following were recorded inland during the spring:Weybread GP: Apr 24th; two, Apr 26th. Livermere Lake: Apr 17th; 27, Apr 24th; two, Apr 28th; 28, May 2nd; eight, May 5th. Lackford Lakes: Apr 19th; seven, Apr 24th; May 6th. Lakenheath Fen/Washes: two, Apr 26th; six, Apr 28th.

There were 34 recorded in June, including 24 north past Thorpeness on 4th, compared with just one recorded in that month in 2011. No breeding attempts were reported this year. 108

Systematic List Autumn passage birds were on the move by mid-July, and around 110 (compared with c.200 in 2011 ) were recorded on passage between then and October 7th, when the final bird of the year was noted offThorpeness. This was a much earlier departure than in 2011 when birds were on the move throughout the whole of October and much of November. COMMON GUILLEMOT Uria aalge Common passage migrant and winter visitor. Amber list. A total of 492 Guillemots was reported during the year compared with 634 during 2011. The higher total in 2011 was largely due to sizeable numbers being recorded in April and May of that year but these were not repeated this year. A comparison of the monthly totals for the two years appears below. Jan 141 24

2012 2011

Feb 4 6

Mar 9 0

Apr 4 157

May 1 134

Jun 16 35

Jul 4 6

Aug 10 9

Sep 97 19

Oct 74 41

Nov 82 95

Dec 50 108

The well-watched site of Thorpeness accounted for just over 63% of all the records, with an annual total of 311 (compared with the corresponding totals of 352 in 2011, 86 in 2010, 108 in 2009 and 387 in 2008). In addition 1165 unidentified Auks were reported off the coast of Suffolk this year. If the proportions of 492 Guillemots to 82 Razorbills are used, albeit rather arbitrarily, then 1000 (around 86%) of these unidentified Auks are quite likely to have been Guillemots. The monthly breakdown of unidentified Auks is given below. Jan 100


Feb 17

Mar 2

Apr 1

May 5

Jun 3

Jul 1

Aug 5

Sep 239

Oct 552

Nov 112

Dec 128

RAZORBILL Alca torda Uncommon passage migrant and winter visitor. Amber list.

2003 32

2004 36

Total of live Razorbills reported 2003-2012 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 48 23 53 341 40 70

2011 36

2012 82

Numbers recorded were higher than in most recent years, with totals boosted by an obvious influx in October. There was also a smaller movement in February which was a blank month in 2011. Jan 7

Feb 10

Mar -

Monthly totals of live Razorbills in 2012 Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep 1 3 1 3 10

LITTLE AUK Alte alle Uncommon passage migrant and winter visitor. A very poor year for this species, with ail reports coming from the coast between Gorleston and Thorpeness. Ail bar one were associated with a single weather-related movement. With advance notice of the passage of individuai along the coast being texted and tweeted live there was, of course,

Oct 33

Little Auk Mark


Nov 7


Dec 7

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 plenty of duplication involved, and allowing for this it appears that only 1 0 - 1 5 birds were recorded in total, with all except one occurring between October 26th and 29th. The peak day was 27th when the maximum day-total from any site was of five past Southwold. The final record of the year was of a lone individual flying south past Thorpeness on November 25th. ATLANTIC PUFFIN Fratercula arctica Scarce passage migrant. Amber list. Eight sightings of live birds this year compare with 13 in 2009, seven in 2010 and five in 2011. Four tideline corpses were also reported in 2012. Lowestoft: Jan 30th (K Hill); two, Sep 23rd (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Thorpeness: Jan 8th; two, Feb 10th; May 6th (DThurlow). Landguard: Sep 20th (P Oldfield, E Lucking). 2003 16

2004 10

Total of live Puffins reported 2003-2012 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 5 2 20 8 13 7

2011 5

2012 8

ROCK PIGEON (DOVE) Columba livia Very common resident from feral stock. Categories A, C and E. The Breeding Birds Survey (BBS) found Feral Pigeons in 8% of the 48 squares surveyed (12% in 2002,14% in 2007) with a combined total of 21 birds. The highest count of the year was 190 on pig fields at Covehithe, January 15th. Other counts of 30 or more came from:Lowestoft: Leathes Ham/Lake Lothing, 100, Oct 28th. Minsmere: 50, Mar 31st.

Sizewell: Beach, 47, May 12th. Gedgrave Marshes: 33, Jan 25th; 32, Feb 9th.

Ipswich: Hospital, 30, Jan 15th. A decline was noted on Orfordness, with a maximum of only 16, February 12th. Noted as present all year at Landguard with a peak of 42, November 18th. STOCK PIGEON (DOVE) Columba oenas Fairly common resident and passage migrant. Amber list. The best count of the year inland was 150 feeding on a pea field at Stonham Aspal, April 17th. The only other counts to exceed 25 were 32 at Shottisham Creek, September 16th, 27 at Gedgrave Marshes, February 9th and 30 at Puttockshill, Pakenham, July 2nd. The BBS found this species in 50% of the 48 squares surveyed (44% in 2002, 36% in 2007) with a combined total of 94 birds. There were signs of occupancy by Stock Doves (adult birds, a nest, eggs or young) in 230 Barn Owl Project boxes, out of a total of 1236 boxes or sites. At Orfordness the breeding numbers declined again to 26 pairs and there was a maximum count of 60, November 3rd. Landguard recorded a total of 742 flying south between October 7th and November 8th with a peak of 242, November 6th. Further north, 146 at Lowestoft, 175 at Minsmere and 250 at Thorpeness all flew south, November 2nd. COMMON WOOD PIGEON Columba palumbus Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. A flock of up to 500 was noted feeding on a field of oilseed rape at Flixton throughout January and February. Other high counts in the first winter period were 1800 at Parham, February 11th, 800 at Stutton Mill, February 21st, 600 at Abbey Farm, Snape, February 28th, 1500 at Newton Green, February 9th, 2000 at Hall Farm, Fornham St Martin, February 16th and 750 at Brettenham, February 10th. 110

Systematic List The BBS found Wood Pigeons in 98% of the 48 squares surveyed (100% in 2002, 98% in 2007) with a combined total of 2356 birds. At least 15 pairs nested on Orfordness, where the breeding population is considered "difficult to monitor", and ten pairs bred at Landguard. A strong autumn passage was reported at Landguard, with a total of 34998 flying south between October 13th and November 11 th and a peak day-count of 13100 south, November 11 th. On October 28th 1100 were noted at Lowestoft, 5000 at Minsmere, 1050 at Orfordness and 2000 at East Lane, Bawdsey, all flying south. High counts in the second winter period were 700 at Walton Marshes, December 11th, 600 at Cavendish, November 11th, 700 at Brockley Green, December 6th, and 2000 at Lackford, December 15th. EURASIAN COLLARED DOVE Streptopelia decaocto Common resident. The BBS found Collared Doves breeding in 69% of the 48 squares surveyed (70% in 2002, 68% in 2007) with a combined total of 162 birds. It was widely recorded as breeding in gardens across the county. In the north-east the highest count was 55 at Gorleston Harbour, September 29th while in the south-east 16 at Rushmere Hall, October 25th was the best count. Higher counts as usual came from the west with 60 at a Pheasant-feeding station at Chilton, October 13th, 45 at Great Livermere, October 20th, 50 at Sudbury, December 11th and 60 at Lakenheath, December 30th. On Orfordness birds were recorded on just six days all year but at Landguard it was present throughout the twelve months with two pairs nesting. EUROPEAN TURTLE DOVE Streptopelia turtur Declining summer visitor and passage migrant. Red list. The first of the year was at Pipp's Ford, April 8th and this was followed by a single at Felixstowe Ferry on 11th, two at Minsmere on 13th and, further west, one at Cavenham Heath on 21 st. Landguard recorded a total of 14 between May 5th and 31 st, with five of these on 31 st. The rapid decline of the Turtle Dove is shown starkly by the Breeding Bird Survey figures. It was found in just 6% of the 48 squares surveyed (53% in 2002, 22% in 2007) with a combined total of a mere three birds. A total of 24 confirmed breeding pairs was reported from five coastal reserves or sites and seven singing males were reported from a further seven locations. Included in the confirmed pairs were ten at Turtle Dove Peter Beeson Minsmere, which is actually an increase from the seven pairs in 2011. Six probable or possible breeding pairs were recorded at six sites in the west. The highest counts during the summer were just four at Pipp's Ford and Gosbeck, five at Walsham-le-Willows, six at Ilketshall St Andrew Common and seven at Lakenheath Fen. The seven at Lakenheath Fen on August 26th were also the last of the year to be reported from the west. Landguard had noted two on passage on August 21 st and there was a single at Thorpeness, August 23rd. The only records after these dates were four at Ilketshall St Andrew Common, September 15th and a late bird at Bawdsey, October 13th. 111

Suffolk Birci Report 2012 2011 Correction: The 41 doves recorded at Stonham Aspal, September 12th 2011 were Collared Doves and not as reported in the report. ROSE-RINGED PARAKEET Psittacula krameri Scarce resident. Categories C and E. Trimley St Martin: Old Kirton Road, July 18th. Ipswich: Stoke Park, Oct 21st and then intermittently to Dec 31st and into 2013. Lakenheath Fen: one of the "blue form", Feb 27th (see Appendix 11 ). COMMON CUCKOO Cuculus canorus Declining summer visitor and passage migrant. Red list. The first of the spring was on the early date of March 28th at Shotley Gate, the first March record since one was in Ipswich on 17th in 2003. March arrivals are unusual, only six having been recorded in the county up to 2002 (Piotrowski 2003). The next in was a bird at Lackford Lakes, April 1st, followed by a single at Alton Water on 5th, while Minsmere's first record was not until 13th. The BBS found Cuckoos in 25% of the 48 squares surveyed (28% in 2002, 27% in 2007) with a combined total of 18 birds. The maximum count during the summer was seven at Lakenheath Fen, June 5th. Six were on Orfordness, May 6th, four at Abbey Farm, Snape, April 30th and May 29th and four at North Stow, Wordwell, June 9th. Breeding was confirmed at a few sites including Carlton Marshes, Sizewell south marsh and Lackford Lakes, where a juvenile was seen being fed by a Reed Warbler. Breeding also probably occurred on Orfordness, where two or three birds were often seen being harassed by Meadow Pipits on the airfield and juveniles later appeared. One flying high south over Lowestoft beach on June 24th was probably an outgoing migrant, as was a bird that flew south at Minsmere the same day. Landguard reported departing adults on ten dates between June 14th and July 4th and subsequently juveniles were reported at Covehithe and Minsmere Levels and Scrape. One at Thorpeness, August 31st came in off the sea at 4.30pm and the final records were at Sizewell Beach, September 15th and a juvenile at Landguard, September 19th. BARN OWL Tyto alba Fairly common resident. Amber list. Categories A and E. It was another successful season for the Suffolk Barn Owl Project. A grand total of 1205 nest boxes and 31 natural sites are now in the Project's inventory and, of these, 384 were used by Barn Owls, an occupancy rate of 31%. Twenty-two of the boxes contained only pellets, 74 adult birds, 26 clutches of eggs and 262 pulii. The majority of the boxes and sites were monitored by trained and licensed observers and a total of 36 adults and 505 pulii was ringed. On Orfordness, although birds were observed throughout the year, nesting pairs were down from three in 2011 to two in 2012. One of the pairs was successful and reared three young but the other pair probably failed. A maximum of six was seen in June. By contrast Landguard recorded just two singles, on October 9th and November 12th. 112



A good count from the north-east was four on Carlton Marshes, June 20th, while a road casualty was reported from the A143 at Great Barton, September 5th. In December one was roosting in the Anglo-Saxon village at the West Stow County Park. FIELD


At Grove Farm, Norton on December 28th a Barn Owl was mugged by a Kestrel, which pinned the owl to the ground and robbed it of its vole prey. Peter Lack LITTLE OWL Athene noctua Fairly common resident. Records came from a total of 102 sites (107 sites in 2011, 151 in 2010), with 26 of these sites in the north-east, 39 in the south-east and 37 in the west. Twelve Little Owls were found to be using Barn Owl Project boxes. The BBS found Little Owls in 15% of the 48 squares surveyed (5% in 2002, 8% in 2007) with a combined total of seven birds. Breeding was only confirmed at five locations. The highest count of the year came from Kirton Creek, where five were seen, September 1st. Counts of three were made at Great Little Owl Mark Ferris Cornard, January 16th and Livermere Lake, August 18th. On Orfordness there were scattered records of a single intermittently through the year and two in September but no nesting took place. A pair was present on Landguard all year but no young were reared. TAWNY OWL Strix aluco Common resident. Three were located at Lound Waterworks on January 1st by birders on a New Year's Day bird count and four at the same site, March 9th was the highest count of 2012. Recorded from a total of 100 sites (114 sites in 2011) with 24 of these in the north-east, 36 in the south-east and 40 in the west of the county. Breeding was only confirmed at three sites, one of these being Christchurch Park, Ipswich, where a pair reared three young. In addition Tawny Owls were found using 21 of the Barn Owl Project boxes. Road casualties reported from Norton in September and Woolpit in October were most likely of young, dispersing birds. LONG-EARED OWL Asio otus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Scarce Sightings in the first winter period came f r o m : -


Minsmere: Jan 6th.

Trimley Marshes: seen hunting and perched, Jan 15th. Stanton: Wyken Hall, Mar 18th. Bardwell: Bowbeck, Jan 21st. Lackford Lakes: Feb 3rd.

West Stow: Country Park, Feb 23rd. Breeding was confirmed at one site on the coast (pair reared two young), one site in central Suffolk (emaciated chick found which died) and two sites around The King's Forest. At one of the latter sites an early chick was seen flying weakly with an adult. May 16th. Singles were also reported during the summer from two additional sites on the coast and two sites in Thetford Forest and these may have belonged to nesting pairs. The only later record was of two on Upper Hollesley Common, September 15th. Surprisingly there were no records of autumn immigrants and no wintering birds were found. 113

Suffolk Birci Report


SHORT-EARED OWL Asio Jlammeus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Rare resident. Amber list. After the exceptional influx in the autumn of 2011, birds were widespread along the coastal marshes and estuaries during January to March. Records included up to five on Kessingland Levels, three at Breydon South Wall, Oulton Marshes, Southwold Town Marshes, Havergate Island and Levington Creek, four at Erwarton Ness, February 12th and one or two at many other sites. In the west up to four were roosting at Puttockshill, Pakenham during January and February with three into March, two were at Stradishall Airfield, January 29th and singles at other sites. Many outgoing migrants were recorded along the coast during April and May, mostly singles. Three seen hunting rough grassland at Rickinghall, April 7th were noteworthy and a road casualty reported here, April 24th, was probably one of these birds. One was rescued from a building at the Greene King brewery in Bury St Edmunds, April 25th and released at Lackford Bridge. FIELD


An unprecedented spring passage was reported from Orfordness. U p to nine were seen in March and by Aprii 21 st 18 were present. This increased to a peak count of 23 on May 6th, and then dropped to 12, May 7th, seven May 19th and two, May 26th. Up to three were seen in June and one in July but there was no evidence that any attempted to nest. Orfordness observers The total of 23 on Orfordness, above, on May 6th is the largest gathering of this species in Suffolk since November 4th 1974 when 36 were at Trimley Marshes. A pair was seen interacting at Shingle Street, May 19th and another was regularly seen at Great Ashfield from early July to mid-August but again there was no evidence for a nesting attempt. The autumn was much quieter and there was no repeat of the large numbers of 2011. Three came in off the sea at Lowestoft, September 22nd and another similarly at Walberswick the same day and three were reported at Landguard, October 23rd. Four had returned to roost at Puttockshill by November 15th but shortly thereafter there were disturbing reports of harassment by photographers and no more were reported after that up to the year's end. The only December records were two at Benacre Pits on 2nd and singles at Burgh Castle, 2nd and Lowestoft on 12th. EUROPEAN NIGHTJAR Caprimulgus europaeus Locally fairly common summer visitor. Scarce migrant. Red list. The first of the year was reported from Snape Warren, May 11th, closely followed by birds in the west at Mayday Farm and Santon Downham on 12th and Minsmere's first singing male on 15th. In the Sandlings heaths a total of 58 territories was located but this is a decline from 78 territories in 2010, when all of these sites were last counted. Nine of these territories were at Minsmere (ten in 2011, 13 in 2010). Seven were seen on one of the commons in the south Sandlings, June 26th and this included four churring males. Churring males were also reported from a number of clearfells in The King's Forest and on several Breckland heaths. At one clearfell in the south of The King's Forest five were seen, June 20th, including three singing males. There were no reports in August and the final bird of the year was a single on Upper Hollesley Common, September 15th. 114



COMMON SWIFT Apus apus Very common summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. The first bird in was reported over Ipswich, April 20th and by 24th Swifts were noted at two coastal sites and another four inland. On May 4th 500 were at North Warren and on May 7th 400 were at Stutton and 250 at Trimley Marshes. During the very wet and cold weather in May many birds were concentrated over freshwater lakes inland and counts included 150 at Livermere Lake and 200 at the Mickle Mere, Pakenham on 6th, 200 at Lakenheath Fen on 11th and 250 at Livermere Lake on 20th. A count of 340 was made at Minsmere, June 8th. The BBS found Swifts in 46% of the 48 squares surveyed (40% in 2002, 37% in 2007) with a combined total of 253 birds. There were several reports of breeding numbers being down (by as much as 50% at Hinderclay) because of the poor summer weather and several observers considered that Swifts had suffered a poor breeding season and that many had failed to nest. Monthly movements of Common Swifts at Landguard Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep In/North 3 161 375 11 0 0 South 8 230 953 756 465 6

Local breeding birds left Pakenham on July 28th and there was evidence of movement from several sites around this date. On August 4th 112 flew south at Landguard and at Mendham on 5th a large column of 400 spiralled up above the observer's house. Orfordness experienced a real paucity of birds in late summer. After 13 were seen on July 22nd there were records on only two dates in August, with six south on 25th and then two south on September 2nd were the last of the year. The observers commented " what happened to all the Swifts, did we just miss the return passage this year?" The last inland was a single at Long Melford, September 11th and on the coast one at Shingle Street, September 30th and two at Gorleston, October 4th were the last of the year. ALPINE SWIFT Apus melba Rare visitor. Lowestoft: flying around the grain silo, Apr 28th and 29th (P J Ransome). COMMON KINGFISHER Alcedo atthis Fairly common resident. Amber list. The BBS found Kingfishers in 6% of the 48 squares surveyed (5% in 2002 and 8% in 2007) with a combined total of three birds. The species was reported from a total of 104 locations (90 in 2011 and 109 in 2010) with 42 of these in the north-east, 30 in the southeast and 32 in the west. Breeding was confirmed at 14 sites and included a family party of five at Weybread Mill, June 25th. FIELD


At Kedington an active nest was flooded out in April following heavy rains. One was seen entering the same nest hole, July 2nd, so the pair may have laid a replacement clutch. Shaun Jarvis Early in the year three in Holywells Park, Ipswich, January 28th were of note and another three were at Santon Downham, March 15th. On Orfordness one or two were seen intermittently in both winter periods but there were more in autumn with a peak of four, September 9th and 13th. Four were also reported from Holywell Row, August 24th, at Oulton Broad, December 4th and on Lakenheath Fen late in the year. 115

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 EUROPEAN BEE-EATER Merops apiaster Rare passage migrant. This sole report continues the unbroken run of records for every year this century. Dunwich: Dingle Hills, circled overhead then flew south, June I Oth (C A Buttle). EURASIAN HOOPOE Upupa epops Scarce passage migrant. Categories A and E. Unusually all the records came in January and March and they may relate to just one bird. The initial record below is also the first-ever in Suffolk for January (first seen on December 31 st of the previous year) and Hoopoes have now been found in the county in every month of the year. Lowestoft: Lake Lothing, Riverside Road, Dec 31st 2011, Jan 1st and 2nd (R Fairhead). Lowestoft: Lake Lothing, Brooke Industrial Estate, Mar 14th to 17th (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Oulton: flew high north along Gorleston Road, Mar 28th (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). EURASIAN WRYNECK Jynx torquilla Uncommon passage migrant. Red list. There were seven spring records, well above average. Walberswiek: in gardens along Palmers Lane, May 7th (I Fair). Minsmere: North bushes, May 1st to 7th (multi-observed). Aldrlngham: Churchyard, Apr 30th ( C P S Ruffles). Boyton Marshes: Apr 25th (Birdguides). Shingle Street: Apr 30th (P and J Kennerley). Landguard: May 5th to 7th (G J Jobson, J Zantboer et al.). Bardwell: Bowbeck, in a garden, May Ist (D Tomlinson). In contrast with the spring, three autumn records are a sparse offering. Pakefield: Cliffs, Sep 15th (Lowestoft Lounge Lizards). Minsmere: Aug 23rd (RSPB). Orfordness: trapped and ringed, Aug 18th (Orfordness Report). GREEN WOODPECKER Picus viridis Common resident. Amber list. The BBS found Green Woodpeckers in 58% of the 48 squares surveyed (53% in 2002, 56% in 2007) with a combined total of 52 birds, in the north-east 15 pairs were confirmed breeding at four sites and this included four pairs at Lound Waterworks and six pairs at the Sizewell SWT reserve. In the south-east three were noted in Holywells Park, Ipswich in February and March and there were counts of five at Coddenham, May 5th and Levington Creek, July 28th. Breckland is excellent habitat for Green Woodpeckers and this was illustrated by the count of 14 on Cavenham Heath, July 10th. Counts of up to four were widely reported from other Breckland sites. In the south-west of the county the Lavenham Bird Club found up to three "yaffles" on ten of their monthly walks along the disused Lavenham railway track. There were no records from Orfordness but Landguard noted singles on March 23rd, July 21 st and August 9th. GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER Dendrocopos major Common resident. Scarce passage migrant. The first one to be reported drumming was in Rolfe's Wood, Lound, January 15th and two were drumming on Berner's Heath in Breckland, February 11th. The BBS found this species in 54% of the 48 squares surveyed (44% in 2002, 42% in 2007) with a combined total of 38 birds. In the north-east 12 pairs were confirmed breeding at eight sites and this included three pairs at Lound Waterworks. Five were reported at Old Newton, June 13th. A pair nested in Holywells Park, Ipswich and was seen feeding at least one chick, May 24th. 116

Systematic List On November 18th six were seen in Holywells Park, all in flight and four were seen in Coddenham, May 12th. The Lavenham Bird Club recorded Great Spotted Woodpeckers on nine of their monthly walks on the old Lavenham railway track. At Thorpeness on October 4th one flew north and three south while out on Orfordness there were singles, September 1st and November 8th. Landguard reported one, April 13th and then a total of 26 between July 4th and October 10th, with a maximum of two, July 15th and October 10th. LESSER SPOTTED W O O D P E C K E R Dendrocopos minor Uncommon resident. Red list. The status of this diminutive woodpecker declined further in 2012 with reports from just six sites, down from 11 sites in 2011 and 2010. Three of the six sites produced just a single record. Stratton Hall: Levington Marina wood, male calling, May 1st. Higham: near Hadleigh, Mar 21st. Bury St Edmunds: west, May 13th.

Cavenham Heath: singles on Jan 11th and 27th and Apr 16th. Santon Downham: up to three recorded between Feb 29th and Mar 28th but not as much activity as most recent years. Lakenheath Fen: two, Jan 22nd; birds heard calling in February and April.

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker Peter Beeson

EURASIAN G O L D E N O R I O L E Oriolus oriolus Rapidly declining summer resident and scarce passage migrant. Red list. This species is on the edge of its range in Britain and maintains a tentative foothold as a 'possible' breeding bird in the county. The first spring records were in the north-east:Kessingland Sewage Works: May 19th (Lounge Lizards). Covehithe Broad: May 12th (R Berry).

Dunwich Heath: male, May 22nd - presumed same as at Minsmere (R Drew). Minsmere: May 20th and 22nd (RSPB). Orfordness: Holm Oaks, male, May 30th (D Crawshaw, G J Jobson) was the first site record for this " lovely


A pair was confirmed, "on territory in the canopy hide/south belts area of RSPB Minsmere, from May 20th to June 20th: breeding here was regarded as "possible"" (RSPB). At the historical breeding location, Lakenheath Fen, "one male attempted to nest, but no further breeding activity was noted, nor any juveniles seen" (RSPB). The Lakenheath Fen sightings:May 11th, male (Breckland Birding Group). May 16th: despite several reports of two birds being present on this date, these sightings probably related to just one widely ranging male (Breckland Birding Group). June 1 st, three: two singing males, with a "female or immature male" present (D White, RSPB). July 1st: female carrying nest material (D Cawdron). August 21st, male still present (K Puttick). RED-BACKED SHRIKE Lanius collurio Scarce passage migrant; formerly bred. Red list. There were three records from four sites of this much-admired shrike. W'estleton Heath: female, June 1st (M L Cornish). Minsmere: main reedbed, male, June 17th (D F Walsh). Landguard: singing male, June 9th and 10th (W J Brame et al.). Felixstowe: Adastral Close, (presumed same) June 11th (Birdguides). 117

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 There have been no records from the west of the county since 2009. This is the first year since 2007 that there have been no autumn records. LESSER GREY SHRIKE Lanius minor Very rare visitor. There were no reports in 2012. GREAT GREY SHRIKE Lanius excubitor Scarce passage migrant and winter visitor. There were a good number of records this year from nine sites of this sprightly, if sometimes elusive, visitor:Carlton Marshes: Mar 27th (C Mutimer); Apr 2nd to 8th (A C Easton); Apr 14th to 16th (Lounge Lizards). Minsmere: Apr 17th (RSPB). Upper Hollesley Common: Jan Ist (N Mason

et al.); Mar 26th to Apr 7th (G Grieco et al.). Santon Downham: Nov 10th (D Balmer). Berners Heath: overwintering, Jan 1st to Mar

19th (D Cawdron, A Goodall). Lakenheath Fen RSPB: overwintering, on river bank, Jan 13th to Feb 14th (D White, RSPB). Stradishall: Airfield, Jan 29th (S Jarvis). Lavham Pits: Jan 1st to Mar 28th (West Suffolk Birders). Layham: Feb 3rd, possibly same as above (M Peers).

Great Grey Shrlke

Mark Ferris

WOODCHAT SHRIKE Lanius senator Very rare visitor. There were two spring records of this south European shrike:Gunton: female, June 19th and 20th (multi-observer). Walberswick: female, June 9th and 10th (P Kennerley, C A Buttle). EURASIAN MAGPIE Pica pica Very common resident. Records of this distinctive, conspicuous bird came from 52 sites, with breeding being confirmed at just four with a further two locations where breeding behaviour was noted. This bird was found in 77% of the BBS squares surveyed (37%, 2009) with a combined total of 137 birds counted (102, 2011). In the north-east there were many single-figure counts with an exception at Lake Lothing, Lowestoft where there were 22 on October 7th. On Orfordness up to 12 birds were present throughout the year, with breeding estimated to be 10 to 12 pairs. In the south-east recording was high and came from 41 sites. The only roost counts were from a long-standing site:— Pipps Ford: 65, Nov 14th; 72, Dec 9th (P Whittaker).

Birds were present all year at Landguard with two pairs nesting, one rearing three young and the other failing when one of the adults, entangled in fishing line, got caught in a Holm Oak near the nest and was killed by a Carrion Crow. Spring maximum was 11, February 28th with a maximum in the autumn of 13 on October 6th. In the west the highest counts were:Lakenheath Fen RSPB: 11, Feb 25th. Bamham Cross Common: 13, Oct 6th.

Brettenham: eight. Mar 9th. 118



EURASIAN JAY Garrulus glandarius Common resident and scarce passage migrant. Reports of this often secretive, mainly woodland, species came from 73 sites and were mainly single-figure records with breeding being confirmed at just three sites. Jays were found in 43% of the BBS squares surveyed (37%, 2009) with a combined total of 37 birds counted (39, 2011). A focus of this year's reports, however, was the heavy passage movement through the county in October. There were many reports of double-figure flocks moving south and peak counts included:Burgh Castle: 30, Oct 2nd.

Kessingland: Sewage Works, 48, Oct 6th. Minsmere: 50, Oct 3rd. Boyton Marshes RSPB: 98, Oct 2nd.

On Orfordness, one was trapped at the Holm Oaks on October 6th, the first recent record for the site. At Landguard a total of 51 was recorded between October Ist and November 15th, with the last bird on this date reappearing on November 26th, with maxima of nine, October 5th and eight, October 28th. Smaller flocks moved south until the middle of October in what seems to have been a mainly coastal movement, although in the west there was evidence of some light passage. The King's Forest: 12, Oct 2nd. Bamham Cross Common: 19, Oct 6th. .








Eurasian Jay Peter

_ Beeson

Ihts was a national spectacle with the BTO reporting rate reaching an all-time-high during this period. Three-figure totals were seen at some locations and these hint that some of these Jays will have been of Continental origin although the true picture is complicated by native birds dispersing as is usuai during October. JAY F I E L D


The dominant bird species this morning was the Jays. My attention was initially drawn to t h e m after I carne across nine together in trees near t h e Wilderness Pond. At first 1 thought they may be mobbing an owl or raptor but it soon became clear that this was to d o with courtship and breeding display. After a short while the group broke up, with one Jay being pursued by four others. This suggested to me a temale being followed by four un-paired males. By way of some background, Jays normally become sexually active in their third year. They have strong pair bonds and will come back together to breed after spending most of the year living solitary lives. Watching one pair in particular this morning provided me with some incredible courtship display. Known as 'lateral display' the temale was seen to approach the male side on - i.e. laterally and calling with a 'clicking' cali. The male would respond by lying iow over the branch and respond to the continued...


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 female with an almost cat like 'mewing'. Both birds had their crests flat (submissive), tails lowered and with their body feathers raised to produce an almost hump- like effect. Both were seen to hold these positions for almost a minute on several occasions before flying away to another tree together calling. This display is normally seen when a breeding pair are re-acquainting themselves with each other, however, it can also been seen at the nest when food is being passed and prior to copulation. Watching a second pair allowed me to witness some different behaviour. Here, a female bird was seen to perch almost horizontally with wings spread and arched forward. The bird then quivered it's tail, the quivering becoming more and more intense each time the male bird moved closer. This display is seen as the female's invitation to copulation and in the case of this pair, copulation was subsequently witnessed. Bill Stone, March 11th- Holywells Park (local patch)

WESTERN JACKDAW Corvus monedula Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Reports came from 43 sites with breeding records coming from only three of these. This species was found in 75% of the BBS squares surveyed (41%, 2009) with a combined total of 617 birds counted (747, 2011). Large congregations of this species were at:Gcdgrave Marshes: 90, Feb 9th.

Marlesford: 193, Sept 23rd. Ipswich: Holywells Park, 67, Sep 29th. Trimley St Martin: Old Kirton Road, 800, Dec 30th; Loompit Lake, 1200, Nov 16th. Bury St Edmunds: 400, Nov 12th, flying to roost. Thetford Heath: 300, Oct 6th.

Lakenheath Fen RSPB: 2000, Dec 22nd. On Orfordness birds were present throughout the year with up to 30 in January and early February, increasing to a maximum of 160 on March 18th with 89 still present on December 16th. There were at least 22-24 breeding pairs in 2012, all in various buildings on site. In spring at Landguard a total of six passed north, 42 south and 18 were on site on 26 dates from February 24th to June 1 st with a maximum of ten south on March 21 st. In autumn there was a total of two north, 15 south and seven on site on 11 dates between September 24th and November 11th, with a maximum of five south on October 30th. A bird showing characteristics of the Nordic race Corvus monedula monedula was present at Bamham, January 22nd (P M Wilson). ROOK Corvus frugilegus Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Reports of this abundant member of the crow family came from 29 locations with breeding confirmed at just two. The BBS reported birds in 62% of squares surveyed (71% in 2009) with a combined total of 622 (830 in 2011). Large flocks counted included:Flixton: 2000, Jan 15th and Nov 7th, both pre-roost gatherings. Marlesford: 248, Sep 23rd. Lakenheath Fen RSPB: 3300, Jan 14th.

On Orfordness 21 were on the point on May 12th. There was the usual influx in June with 30 on 2nd then small numbers until 23rd. In September two flew south on 27th and 24 flew north on 30th. At Landguard, spring passage totals were: three north and 23 south on 16 dates, February 120

0. Temminck's Stint at Tinker's

21. Wood Sandpiper at Boyton in

1arsh in M a y .


Peter Ransome

22. Woodcock well camouflaged in the leaf litter. Jon Evans

23. Long-billed Dowitcher at Livermere in May. Barry

Sean Nixon


Systematic List 23rd to May 4th with a maximum of five south on March 9th; in autumn, 15 south on seven dates, October 6th to November 7th with a maximum of five south on October 15th. CARRION CROW Corvus corone. Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Reports of this arch survivor of the corvid family came from 50 sites with 15 breeding records submitted. This species was found in 98% of the BBS squares surveyed (98%, 2009) with a combined total of 377 (540, 2011). At Thorpeness a number of birds were seen either flying north offshore or heading in off the sea during April and 13 flew north there on April 13th (D Thurlow). Up to 30 birds were present throughout the year in the Boyton Marshes and Aide/Ore complex. On nearby Orfordness birds were present throughout the year with up to ten frequently counted. Notable influxes were in March with, 37 on 17th and 23 on 24th. In April, 24 were on site on 14th. Three pairs nested, all in the Cobra Mist compound, two on the aerial masts and one in a tree. Present all year at Landguard; two pairs attempted nesting in the docks but were prevented from doing so by Peregrines. There was a spring maximum of 14, April 6th and 13, September 9th in autumn. Passage movements involved one north and 69 south, plus four in off the sea on 19 dates between February 28th and May 13 th with a maximum of eight south, March 8th. One flew south on June 13th. Movements in autumn involved two north and 32 south on nine dates from October 9th to November 11th with a maximum of nine south on both October 13th and 28th. Notable congregations included:Trimley St Martin: Loompit Lake, 50, Mar 10th. Wherstead/Ipswich: Orwell Bridge, 150, Dec 29th. Great Livermere: 150, Jan 9th. Lakenheath RSPB: 200, Jan 29th. Barnham Cross Common: 100, May 10th.

A pair nested on one of the floodlighting columns at the Portman Road ground of Ipswich Town Football Club. HOODED CROW Corvus comix Scarce winter visitor. It was a very good year for 'Hoodies', with reports of single birds from:Lowestoft: Ness Point, Apr 8th, different from Boyton bird (A C Easton). Beccles Marshes: Jan 4th (C A Buttle).

Benacre: Beach Farm, Oct 20th (E Lucking). Eastbridge/Minsmere: Feb 4th to 20th (S Rutt). Boyton Marshes: Mar 11th to 20th (N SiileÂŤ, S Abbott). Gedgrave Marshes: Mar 11th and 20th, Boyton bird (T N Hodge, G Grieco). Landguard: south, Oct 7th (W.J.Brame, P Oldfield et al.). There were a number of reports of hybrid Carrion/Hooded corvids in the north-east in April. NORTHERN RAVEN Corvus corax Very rare visitor. Formerly bred. Two aerial Ravens were seen in the north-east and one in the south-east: Covehithe: Mar 12th, circled overhead, I l:20hr, before heading north (C Buttle). Wangford: Landfill, June 1st, circled with large gulls then drifted south (B J Small). Melton: Park Wood, north-west, June 28th (S Abbott et al.). There was a single record from the west of the county:The King's Forest (east): north. Mar 11th (C Jakes).

GOLDCREST Regulus regulus Very common resident and passage migrant. Reports of this minute 'crest' came from 62 sites and most records were of single birds. 121

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 However, there was a remarkable count of 100 (minimum) at Minsmere, October 26th (J H Grant). Goldcrests were found in 31% of the BBS squares surveyed (15%, 2009) with a combined total of 68 (58, 2011). On Orfordness, a singleton on March 15th and 17th was the first of the year followed by five on March 24th, the only others in another poor spring. The first of autumn was on September 16th with 25 arriving, October 21st and 30, October 22nd. Numbers then declined to three by November 17th. A hardy female trapped on October 23rd was re-trapped on December 16th and was clearly trying to overwinter. Ringing totals at Orfordness over the last five years:2008 2009 115








Breeding was confirmed at Sizewell SWT reserve with 17 territories. Twenty-five were with the tit flock in Holywells Park, Ipswich on October 21st and ten at both Wolves RSPB and Ramsey Woods RSPB, November 12th. At Landguard one was present at the north end of the reserve, January 14th. Spring passage ran from March 12th to 29th, with a maximum of 12, March 12th. Autumn passage was from September 13th to November 20th with at least one bird lingering until December 2nd and there was a maximum of 30, October 22nd. Good numbers were seen in the west with 30 at Hengrave on January 27th and 12 at North Stow, The King's Forest on April 22nd. FIRECREST Regulus ignicapilla Uncommon regular breeder and passage migrant. Some overwinter. Amber list. The tiny, vibrant, Firecrest is a sought-after species and very popular with birders. Reports came from 34 sites. The only breeding records came from Thetford Forest, with 26 territories being recorded. This species was found in 2% of the BBS squares surveyed (0%, 2009) with a combined total of six (7, 2011). On Orfordness, the first of the year was one on March 17th, surprisingly the only record of the spring. One was present on September 23rd, one on October 7th, four on 11th, and one on 13th. These were the only sightings in a very poor year for this bird. At Landguard, spring passage ran from March 12th to May 27th, with a maximum of two, March 31 st. Autumn passage was from October 8th to November 9th with one bird lingering to 13th, with a maximum of four October 22nd and 23rd. EURASIAN PENDULINE TIT Remiz pendulinus Very rare visitor. This was the sixth successive year that this intriguing, elusive rarity has been recorded in the county. There was, however, only one accepted record, at Minsmere, where a male and female were present on March 26th. The birds were watched for five minutes near East Hide before phone-scoping revealed their true identities (L and M C Cantrell). BLUE TIT Cyanistes caeruleus Very common resident and scarce passage migrant. Amber list (C. c. obscurus) Reports of this ever-present, elfin, sprightly species came from 53 sites with most coming from the south-east of the county. Breeding was confirmed at just six sites. Blue Tits were found in 100% of the BBS squares surveyed (98%, 2009) with a combined total of 388 (473, 2011). At Sizewell SWT, 75 territories were recorded and at Ipswich Golf Club there were 24 nests in boxes, where five failed and 19 pairs successfully fledged a total of 123 young. On Orfordness the first singletons appeared on February 25th with a different individual 122

Systematic List on 26th. In October three were by the lighthouse on 7th, three were at Pig Pail on 25th and two were still present on 27th, making this one of the better years for this scarce visitor to the Ness. Systematic recording of this species has continued for a number of years at Rushmere Primary School where the maximum for the year was 12, January 26th. Other high counts were 18, Alton Water, March 26th, 25, Holywells Park, Ipswich, October 7th and 20, Kate's Hill, Hadleigh, November 15th. At Landguard birds were present all year as usual with one pair also nesting again. Nine birds from previous years survived the winter. Spring passage ran from March 6th to April 7th, with a maximum of five, March 19th. Two flew south, April 7th. The first juvenile appeared on June 20th with very few dispersing juveniles turning up on site from elsewhere until August 10th. Autumn passage was from September 3rd to November 6th with later birds on November 15th and 30th with a maximum of 22, October7th. In the west significant counts came from Livermere Lake with 26, December 6th and Brandon Country Park where 48 were seen, February 16th. GREAT TIT Parus major Very common resident and scarce passage migrant. Amber list (P. m. newtoni). Reports of this ubiquitous species came from 53 sites with breeding confirmed at only five. Found in 91% of the BBS squares surveyed (94%, 2009) with a combined total of 223 birds (274, 2011). At Lound Water Works, 19 territories were recorded and at Sizewell SWT, 48 territories were logged. Breeding was confirmed at West Stow with four chicks being fed by a single adult; only two fledged of which one died. Two were noted on Orfordness, February 25th with singles present in October, on 21st (Holm Oaks) and 23rd (Labi ). A good year for Orfordness! Twenty-two were present at Alton Water, January 22nd and 17, Trimley Marshes SWT, March 24th. In Holywells Park, Ipswich, 28 were recorded on October 7th. As usual birds were present all year at Landguard, with three pairs breeding. Eleven birds from previous years survived the winter. Spring passage ran from February 24th to April 1st with a maximum of nine on March 13th. A new female turned up on May 26th and a new male on June 10th. The first juveniles were noted on May 25th with dispersing juveniles turning up on site from elsewhere from June 1st to August 13th with a maximum of 16 on May 25th. Autumn passage ran from September 8th to October 30th with a maximum of eight, October 7th. At Brandon Country Park, 32 were seen on February 16th. COAL TIT Periparus ater Very common resident and scarce passage migrant. Amber list (P. a. britannicus) This species, more so than its relatives, is mainly confined to woodlands, particularly conifers and therefore abundant in the west. Sightings came from 36 locations with breeding confirmed from seven sites. Coal Tits were found in 27% of the BBS squares surveyed (20%, 2009) with a combined total of 80 (66, 2011). Most sightings were of single-figure groups with the exception of: 40, Tunstall Forest, March 21st and 25, North Stow, The Kings Forest, April 22nd. At Landguard singles appeared on June 13th, 14th and 20th. Racially-unidentified birds (possibly Continental) were at Landguard on October 4th and 30th. Continental Coal Tit Periparus ater ater Scarce passage migrant. Landguard: Oct 12th.


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 WILLOW TIT Poecile montana Uncommon resident and scarce passage migrant. Red list. This bird's distinctive song and call are quite rare these days. Records of this tit were as usual restricted to three traditional locations in the west, with breeding at one of thi sites deemed as "possible". The Kings Forest: Apr 27th (C Gregory). Suffolk wood nearThetford: three, Jan 9th (E W Pa Santon Downham: Mar 16th (S Abbot).

MARSH TIT Poecile palustris Fairly common resident. Red list. This glossy black-capped tit is popular and well-recorded across the county. Typically absent this year from coastal locations such as Orfordness and Landguard, records of this woodland specialist came from 63 locations with the highest proportion in the west of the county. This bird was found in 6% of the BBS squares surveyed (13%, 2009) with a combined total of four birds (7, 2011 ). Marsh Tits seem to move in groups of four as four breeding territories were recorded at Sizewell Belts SWT, four were at North Cove SWT, January 11th and December 24th, Wolves RSPB and Ramsey RSPB Woods, March 25th and Pipps Ford, December 9th. In this species' stronghold, West Suffolk, five were seen at Santon Downham, February 20th and March 15th and four at Knettishall Heath on July 20th. A Bury St Edmunds' observer had the "first garden record in 17years" on November 29th which is encouraging. BEARDED TIT Panurus biarmicus Uncommon resident. Amber list. Reports of this striking, reedbed acrobat came from 32 sites with breeding confirmed at four sites (five, 2011) This species was not found in any of the BBS squares surveyed. Walberswiek and Westwood Marshes: less than 20 pairs indicated below-average breeding numbers (50, 2010 and 60, 2007). Minsmere: 23 territories. North Warren: six pairs.

Lakenheath Fen: no full survey undertaken but a minimum of 35 territories. Outside of these key areas, 18 were at Burgh Castle on February 6th, 12, The Haven, Thorpeness, October 10th and ten were at Abbey Farm, Snape, October 28th. At Lackford Lakes SWT a pair was present on April 1st and seven birds on October 7th. On Orfordness, the first arrival was a single bird at Pig Pail on January 28th, but there were no others until October 7th when one flew over calling. On October 13th, 12 were present and on 14th at least 60 moved through the site, leaving just a few (probably two) in Chantry Reedbed. In November up to eight were counted here until 24th and at least two remained throughout December. WOODLARK Lullula arborea Fairly common breeding species. Scarce on passage and in winter. Amber list. This wonderful bird has been in decline for some years now. However, in the Suffolk Sandlings in 2012 there was a marked increase with numbers of breeding pairs up at the following localities. There were 85 pairs in total up from 68 in 2011, the latter figure including data not received in time for the 2011 report. Dunwich area: nine pairs (four in 2011 ). North Warren: six pairs (one in 2011). Rendlesham Forest: nine pairs (four in 2011). 124

Systematic List Tunstall Forest: eight pairs (five in 2011). Hollesley and Sutton Commons: 21 pairs (19 in 2011).

Woodbridge Airfield: eight pairs (four in 2011). In the west of the county the Thetford Forest area of Suffolk recorded 86 pairs up from 84 in 2011, although overall the Norfolk/Suffolk total was down by 7%. In The King's Forest breeding was confirmed with a family party which included five young on May 17th. A party of 18 was recorded at Weatherhill Farm, Icklingham on September 22nd and seven were in The King's Forest on November 25th. During autumn migrants were seen over Landguard with a single on October 13th, three on both October 20th and 24th and another singleton on November 17th. Six were also seen over Minsmere on October 7th. SKYLARK Alauda arvensis Common resident, passage migrant and winter visitor. Red list. The first winter period saw the largest flocks of the year with the biggest gatherings as follows:Barsham Marshes: 140, Feb 3rd - the highest feeding total in Suffolk since 1986 when 1000 were in the Aide Estuary area, February 9th. Alderton: 350, Feb 5th. Hinderclay: 800, Feb 5th.

Great Waldingfield: 80, Jan 9th, highest site count since 2009. Breeding was recorded from seven locations. On Orfordness there were 48-56 pairs which includes 27-30 along "The Point" an area that has not been counted since 2008. As a comparison the total in 2008 was 60 pairs, including 40 along "The Point". Migration during the autumn saw 141 birds south through Landguard during October. At Corton, 136 were seen on October 13th involving 70 in the cliff top fields and 66 moving south. Holywells Park in Ipswich had a flock of 30 over on October 30th. The only flocks recorded, and submitted, in the second winter period were at Barsham Marshes with 60 on November 18th and 50, December 6th. HORNED (SHORE) LARK Eremophila alpestris Scarce winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. It was another good year for this species. In the first winter period six were present on Havergate Island, January 6th and up to eight there between February 3rd and 21 st. A single bird was nearby on Orfordness on February 19th and five at "The Point" on March 29th. Three birds were in the Kessingland-Benacre area on April 5th and 6th. During October this species was seen at the following sites but some may relate to the same birds. Kessingland: Oct 16th.

Benacre: Sluice, two, Oct 16th, one remaining to Oct 19th. Easton Bavents: Oct 18th and 19th. Southwold: Oct 14th and 15th.

Dunwich: Dingle Marshes, four, Oct 29th. SAND MARTIN RiparĂŹa riparia Common summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. The first report of the year was of a single bird seen at Lackford Lakes on March 16th followed by three birds the next day at Livermere Lake. On 25th four were at Lackford and two at Minsmere, Pakefield and Flixton. Numbers did not build up until the end of April with 50 birds present at Lackford on 28th and 100 at Loompit Lake on the same day. Breeding was recorded from 11 locations, the highest totals being the following:Corton: 141 pairs. Pakefield: 165 pairs. Easton Broad: 100 pairs.


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Dispersing birds recorded at Landguard during the autumn totalled 248 birds south with the highest being 34 south on September 17th. The last birds of the year were singles at Fressingfield, October 3rd and Gunton Warren, October 13th. BARN SWALLOW Hirundo rustica Very common summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list A single bird at Minsmere on March 21st was the first returning bird. This was followed by single birds at Lackford, 25th and Wyken Hall, Stanton, 26th and two at Minsmere and North Denes, Lowestoft on 27th. By May, numbers had built up with counts of 400 at Trimley Marshes, 3rd and 200 on 4th. Breeding was only reported from six locations. On Orfordness there were 6-7 pairs although the regular pair did not return to breed in the office porch in 2012. In the west of the county breeding birds at Pakenham and West Stow were Barn Swallow said to have done well despite the poor summer. Richard Allen Autumn passage at Landguard saw 9368 south during September with the highest day-counts being 1372 on 4th and 1828 on 18th, with a further 1540 south during October. The last records of the year were during November; 11 birds were seen on 11 th at eight sites followed by a single at Landguard on 26th and then the last on the late date of 28th at Upper Holton, Halesworth. Barn Swallow/House Martin hybrid: Landguard, Oct 9th (A Kennedy). HOUSE MARTIN Delichon urbicum Very common summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Not recorded until the last day of March when one was seen at Lackford Lakes, then next seen on April 3rd with single birds at Southwold Golf Course and Weybread Gravel Pits. These were followed by eight birds at Melton Fishing Lakes on 4th. By early May numbers had built up with counts of 300 at Loompit Lake, 4th and 200 at Mickle Mere, 6th. Breeding was confirmed from 15 localities mostly in the west of the county where at Brettenham two pairs raised two broods each and at Thetford birds were still feeding young on September 19th. During the autumn pre-dispersal flocks were seen with 200 at Lackford and 200 at Lakenheath both on September 18th. This seemed to be the big day for birds moving with Landguard logging 1312 birds south out of a total for the month of 3724 south. Late birds were seen into November with a single bird at Hopton-on-Sea on November 11th which preceded the last one of the year at St Olaves, November 22nd. RED-RUMPED SWALLOW Cecropis daurica Rare visitor. There were two records involving three birds. There have now been 36 records of this charismatic bird in Suffolk involving 42 birds. Minsmere: two, May 12th (P Green). Bawdsey: East Lane, May 13th (L Woods). 126

Systematic List

Cetti's Warbler Su Gough

CETTI'S WARBLER Cettia cetti Fairly common resident and rare passage migrant The recent harsh winters do not seem to have adversely affected the populations of Cetti's Warbler in the same way as they have heathland species. Once again reports came from north to south in the coastal strip with the westernmost records from Ipswich Golf Club (Purdis Farm) and Flatford. Impressive numbers of singing males were at Minsmere with 66, North Warren, 30 and Walberswick/Westleton 25. The Dingle ringers suggested that the trapping of only 15 birds indicated a poor breeding season. Lakenheath noted 17 territories with three other western sites holding birds. Local movement was indicated by three birds being caught on Orfordness on September 9th. LONG-TAILED TIT Aegithalos caudatus FIELD NOTE Very common resident and scarce passage migrant A Long-tailed Tit made four This widespread species brought few reports of note desperate attempts to enter with the maximum flock size being 30 at Snape in March. a conservatory in Trimley St Birdtrack north-east had 396 records, many of which Martin on March 29th. were singletons; the area recorder received only four R Biddie reports, one of which gave the useful information that 20 pairs bred at Sizewell. In contrast the south-east saw 92 records, many of which came from regular reporters at Holywells Park, Ipswich, Rushmere Hall School, Ipswich and Alton Water. In the west only six non-Birdtrack reports were made. GREENISH WARBLER Phylloscopus trochiloides Very rare visitor The second and third in three years of a total of thirteen since the first in 1981. Landguard: trapped and ringed, May 26th, fourth site record (G Bennett, J Zantboer et al.). Orfordness: singing in reedbed, June 9th (M Marsh). PALLAS'S LEAF WARBLER Phylloscopus proregulus Uncommon autumn passage migrant. The second blank year of the century, the other being 2006. YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER Phylloscopus inornatus Uncommon autumn passage migrant. A New Year surprise was one at Ness Point on January Ist (R Drew) with the same, or another, in Lowestoft on March 12th. This is Suffolk's first mid-winter record. This year's passage period was very similar to that of 2010 when about 18 birds were reported. First noted at Ness Point on September 22nd, birds were then seen along the length of the coast to Landguard until November 1st. Single birds were seen away from the immediate vicinity of the coast at Burgh Castle and on Sutton Common. An estimated total of about 30 birds seems plausible from the data collected which continues to confirm the recent change in status. 127

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 RADDE'S WARBLER Phylloscopus schwarzi Very rare visitor The first since 2009 bringing the county total to 21. Hollesley Marshes RSPB: ringed, Oct 30th (R Duncan, O Slessor). WOOD WARBLER Phylloscopus sibilatrix Uncommon passage migrant. Former breeder. Red list. After a blank 2011 one of the treats of the spring was prolonged, gutsy singing from a persistent and lonely male at Sutton Heath. Much admired, the bird was photographed from every angle and was somehow ringed by a local patch worker. The other records were fleeting:Dunwich Heath: May 24th (S H Piotrowski). Hollesley: May 8th (N Mason). Sutton Heath: May 10th to June 7th (R Tomlinson, G Button). Landguard: ringed May 11th (Bird Observatory). Groton Wood: Apr 30th (P J Hamilton). Autumn produced five birds:Lowestoft: Aug 10th (D G Beamish). Minsmere Sluice: Aug 5th (J M Gibbs).

Minsmere: Aug 11th (T Butler). Landguard: Aug 4th (J Zantboer, G Jobson); ringed, Aug 8th (P Oldfield). COMMON CHIFFCHAFF Phylloscopus collybita A very common summer visitor and passage migrant. A few overwinter. As would be expected, wintering birds were reported throughout the county with at least 15 in the north-east. There were fewer in the south-east; Alton Water had one of the Siberian race on February 12th. A further Siberian bird was at Long Melford from January 7th to February 11th (D Underwood), where there had been one in December 2007. M Peers had a bird at Ballingdon, Sudbury on February 7th which showed characteristics of the race abientinus. Spring passage at Landguard was from March 12th to June 17th. Many records of breeding birds involved small numbers; there were 42 singers at Alton Water on March 29th. In the west six sites holding between ten and 30 birds were located in the Sudbury area. Landguard reported autumn passage from September 3rd to November 8th with a maximum of 20 on September 30th and an eastern bird on October 26th (N Odin). Orfordness ringers trapped 72, a very similar number to the last two years. Lackford CES reported a below average haul of 13 adults and 26 juveniles. WILLOW WARBLER Phylloscopus trochilus Common summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. An early arrival was at Santon Downham on March 18th. Landguard's first bird was trapped on March 31st starting a passage that lasted until May 23rd with a maximum of 20 on May 2nd. On Orfordness there were just two, on April 7th. Following a report of three similar birds at the same place last year, about 15 of the northern form acredula were at Shingle Street on May 11th (P and J Kennerley). David Pearson produced the most informative breeding data finding 30 territories in the Walberswick/Blythburgh/Westleton area compared with 48 in 2009 and 200 in 1999. There was no impressive total of breeding birds from North Warren this year but 27 pairs were at Sizewell and 15 at Minsmere. Away from the north-east a total of ten at Bobbit's Lane, Ipswich and several double-figure counts in The King's Forest area were noteworthy. Autumn birds moved through Landguard from July 21st to September 28th followed by a late bird on October 24th. On Orfordness 67 were ringed which was an unremarkable 128

Systematic List number. At Laekford Lakes no juveniles were caught at the CES site for the first time in 21 years, probably because of the weather. BLACKCAP Sylvia atricapilla Common summer visitor and passage migrant with a few overwintering. Wintering birds were seen throughout the county, with around 50 being recorded. Landguard reported spring migration from March 24th to June 13th. Breeding bird compilations came from a few sites. Sizewell SWT held 27 singers and there were nine at the much-watched Holywells Park in Ipswich. In the west 25 territories were held at Sudbury but only ten at Lakenheath. At Lackford 21 birds were ringed during what was described as a poor season. Orfordness ringers trapped 46 birds in the autumn, a typical number; Landguard had birds moving through from September 3rd to November 15th. There were over 20 migrants at Thorpeness on September 29th. GARDEN WARBLER Sylvia borin Common summer visitor and passage migrant. The first bird of the year on March 30th at Gazeley is the earliest-ever for the county. In spring Orfordness had only one migrant, on May 12th; Landguard had a day-maximum of three. Minsmere reported 17 breeding territories; there was no information from the normally hugely productive North Warren. Assington with four pairs held the biggest concentration in the west. At Lackford Lakes CES eight adults and four juveniles were trapped. Passage commenced when Landguard saw a day-maximum of two in autumn with the last bird on September 29th. BARRED WARBLER Sylvia nisoria Scarce passage migrant In the last five autumns Barred Warblers have only appeared in 2010, when eight were located, and this record in 2012. This is the latest record in Suffolk since 2000 when one was at Lowestoft between November 26th and December 6th. Minsmere: Sluice, Oct 25th to 29th (E W Patrick et al.); North Wall, Nov 2nd(multi-observer). 2010 Correction: The year's corrected total is eight, not nine as stated. The record year for Barred Warblers in Suffolk remains 2001 when up to ten were recorded. LESSER WHITETHROAT Sylvia curruca Fairly common summer visitor and passage migrant. Melton claimed the first of the spring on April 10th. Landguard noted spring passage from April 22nd until June 6th with a maximum of eight on May 2nd; Orfordness had just two on April 29th. Only two sites, Lound with 13 and Sizewell with 11, reported double-figure breeding bird estimates. Autumn passage at Landguard ran from August 21 st to October 7th with a maximum of four birds on three occasions. In a similar period Orfordness saw a total of ten birds. COMMON WHITETHROAT Sylvia communis Common summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. The season started with a bird at Flatford on April 4th. The next appeared at Landguard on April 22nd with migration continuing at the observatory until May 30th with numbers 129

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 peaking at 40+ on May 21st. Passage at Orfordness started on April 21st with a maximum of 23 birds on May 12th. No site reported more than 18 territories with this maximum number counted at Thorpeness, Pipps Ford and Sudbury. Landguard held a maximum of ten birds on August 6th as part of the autumn passage that ran from July 21 st to October 9th. Orfordness saw 66 birds ringed in the autumn. DARTFORD WARBLER Sylvia undata Uncommon local resident. Scarce visitor. Amber list. The information received suggests that the continuing hard winters have reduced numbers in the north where some 65 pairs were found between Walberswick and Snape Warren (80+ in 2011); some 42 of these were in the Dunwich/Minsmere area. On Hollesley and Sutton Commons there seems to have been little change since last year. Away from the usual areas birds were seen at Benacre on October 1 st (C Buttle) and at Levington on November 5th (multi-observer) remaining at least until January 2013. COMMON GRASSHOPPER WARBLER Locustella naevia Uncommon and declining summer visitor and passage migrant. Red list. The first bird was heard at Lackford Lakes on April 11th. Once again a reasonable estimate of the number of reelers was about 40 with just over half of these in the east; the highest counts were five at Carlton Marshes and four at Oulton Marshes. Eight other sites in the coastal region held one bird. In the west Lakenheath reported nine territories and Great Livermere had two. Singles were heard at seven other sites, two of which were in the valley fens of the Little Ouse. David Pearson commented that nine trapped at the Dingle, including the last bird of the autumn on September 7th, suggested a poor breeding season. SAVI'S WARBLER Locustella luscinioides Rare summer visitor and passage migrant. Red list. A singing bird at Westwood Marshes, Walberswick became only the sixth record in the past 15 years. Walberswick: Westwood Marshes, May 12th (B J Small). ICTERINE WARBLER Hippolais icterina Scarce passage migrant This makes 28 records during this century. Corton: May 26th ( R Fairhead). SEDGE WARBLER Acrocephalus schoenobaenus Common summer visitor and passage migrant. The first of the year was at Hen Reedbeds on March 29th. No large counts of territories were reported and numbers appeared to remain stable. Orfordness saw 469 ringed, over twice as many as in 2011 (214). Minsmere Sluice Bushes held the last bird of the year on September 22nd. MARSH WARBLER Acrocephaluspalustris Scarce migrant. Red list. A breeding record in 2010 was followed by no birds at all in 2011. However fortunes were revived by five migrants appearing in the last week in May. Orfordness: ringed. May 26th ( M Marsh, D Crawshaw). Landguard: three different trapped birds, one the first Dutch-ringed bird to be recovered in the county. May 26th (R Duncan, G Bennett); May 28th; May 29th (G Bennett). 130

Systematic List Great Livermere: popular bird which sang and showed well attracting many birders, May 27th to 29th (M Wright et al.). EURASIAN REED WARBLER Acrocephalus scirpaceus Common summer visitor and passage migrant. The first of the year was at Lakenheath Fen on April 8th. Minsmere reported 208 territories; the other 'big' sites offered incomplete counts, but there was nothing to suggest any great change in breeding numbers compared with the two previous years. Orfordness ringers trapped 359 birds compared with 187 and 526 in the two preceding years. The last sighting of the year was at Sizewell on October 22nd. 2011 Correction: The bird at Minsmere on April 4th 2011 is the earliest-ever recorded in Suffolk. BOHEMIAN WAXWING Bombycilia garrulus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. The first winter period saw a continuation of the good numbers noted at the end of 2011. Records on January 1st included 33 at Ellough Airfield. In the north-east there were seven double-figure reports culminating with one at Oulton Broad on February 27th. The south-east told a similar story with 24 records of 50+ birds, reaching a peak of 70 at Ipswich Hospital on January 4th, and a last sighting of two birds at Kesgrave on March 14th. However there was only one record in the west for this period - seven at Haverhill on January 12th. There were many sightings of Waxwings in the second winter period reaching a peak of 170 at Ipswich on December 4th, with another notable flock of 155 at Sudbury on December 25th. These were amongst eight flocks of 100+ noted in the county. Bohemian Waxwing Richard Allen That 2012 was an even better "Waxwing year" than 2011 is evidenced by the 486 records for this species in the 12-month period compared with 366 in the previous year. This included a record showing of 169 birds on 19 separate days at Landguard. EURASIAN NUTHATCH Siila europaea Fairly common resident. The west of the county once again provided a high proportion of the records of this attractive passerine, with 34 sites reporting birds compared with 43 in 2011. The total number of site records was slightly down from 59 in 2011 to 51. Fourteen breeding sites were reported including Minsmere, Thornham Parva, Nowton Park, Clare Castle C.P. and Ickworth Park. Of possible significance was the first record on the Shotley Peninsula for ten years - a bird at Freston on April 9th (J. A. Glazebrook). EURASIAN TREECREEPER Certhia familiaris Common resident. Amber list (C.f.britannica). As in previous years, there were few records of more than a single pair at any one site. Although 299 records were submitted, evidence of breeding was only reported at nine sites. There were four breeding pairs at Sizewell Belts compared with five in 2011, with other confirmed sites including Holywells Park (Ipswich), Bridge Farm (Pakenham) and Assington. 131

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 EURASIAN WREN Troglodytes troglodytes Very common resident and scarce passage migrant This abundant songbird seemed to have recovered from the losses of 2010/11. In the north-east recording area the following records were reasonably encouraging:Carlton Marshes: nine territories (ten in 2011). Oulton Marshes: 11 territories (ten in 2011 ).

Sizewell Belts SWT: 108 territories (92 in 2011). Breeding was also reported at:Lound Waterworks: 26 territories.

In the south-east, there were 158 reports, but only seven of these gave counts in double figures with a high of 20 at Alton Water on April 22nd. On Orfordness, this species was down to a single pair in 2011, but 3-6 pairs were reported from this site in 2012. COMMON STARLING Sturnus vulgaris Very common but declining resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Red list. As usual, there were some very high counts of flocks going to roost including:Lowestoft Harbour roost: 15,000, Jan 14th. Benacre Pits: 5,000, Feb 7th. Hollesley Marshes: 2,000, Mar 11th.

Great Livermere: 4,000, Jan 8th; 4,000, Dec 2nd. Great Barton: 5,000, Feb 5th.

Lakenheath: 25,000, Nov 16th. Monthly maxima at Orfordness were as follows:Jan 80

Feb 70

Mar 300

Apr 5

May 13

Jun 400

Jul 350

Aug 150

Sep 250

Oct 300

Nov 220

Dec 30

These figures are generally lower than in 2011, perhaps reflecting the continuing decline of this species. There were a few significant records of autumn immigration from coastal sites:— Lowestoft: Ness Point, 700, Nov 11th. Corton Cliffs: 700, Oct 28th. Thorpeness: 300, Oct 18th.

At Landguard, the first movement of the autumn was five on September 26th, preceding a total of 1412 during the period October 12th to November 18th, with a maximum of 320 on October 21st (N. Odin). At Orfordness, a few were observed to arrive in off the sea in the early autumn, with 50 on October 7th and 270 on October 27th. A further 220 arrived off the sea on November 11th. ROSY STARLING Pastor roseus Rare visitor. Categories A and E. The 37th and 38th Suffolk records are as follows:Hollesley: adult, June 8th (G Button, E W Patrick). Landguard: lst-summer, May 25th (G D Bennett, P J Holmes, N Odin) The Landguard sighting is the seventh site record. WHITE-THROATED DIPPER Cinclus cinclus Rare winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list (C.c.gularis - British Dipper) The long-staying Thetford bird, of the nominate race C.c.cinclus, which arrived on November 6th became the 34th Suffolk record and the first confirmed sighting since 1998 during its occasional flights along the Little Ouse and across the border. RING OUZEL Tardus torquatus Fairly common passage migrant. Red list 132

Systematic List A much better year for the upland blackbird. There were 184 observations at 41 sites in 2012 compared with 44 at 34 sites in 2011. The north-east produced 28 spring migration records from 12 sites. The first was at Beach Farm, Benacre, April 11th and the last at Minsmere, May 24th. These were mostly singles and twos except for four at Burgh Castle, April 27th. The south-east had 16 spring records with a maximum of eight at Landguard on April 24th. There were also eight spring sightings in the west of the county of which the earliest was of two at Foxhole Heath, April 11th and the latest a male at Lakenheath Fen, May 21 st. The autumn was a similar story with 90 reports from the north-east and 36 from the southeast but just one from the west. Many of these reports were again of more than one bird with the largest group being six at Landguard, October 13th. The earliest sighting came from Bradwell, September 24th and the last was at Pakefield Cliffs, November 2nd. 2011 was the worst year on record for this species at Orfordness, so2012's showing of sightings on five dates in autumn with a maximum of five birds on October 22nd is a distinct improvement. COMMON BLACKBIRD Turdus menila Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. The Blackbird is ubiquitous in Suffolk, but, being so common, there were few reports of confirmed breeding, the most significant being:Sizewell Belts: 22 territories (down from 37 in 2011). Landguard: 12 pairs nesting but with very low productivity. There were, however, more optimistic reports from the west:Pakenham : "one of the few species to benefit from the wet summer ". Lackford: "17 juveniles trapped, the highest total in 21 seasons ".

There were 183 records submitted with 53 of double figures or more. The most noteworthy of these was of an influx on October 28th involving 400 at Landguard and 450 on Orfordness. FIELDFARE Turdus pilaris Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Red list. The familiar winter sight of Fieldfares in fields, parks and gardens was less evident in 2012. There were 25 reports of flocks involving 100 individuals or more compared with 47 in 2011. During the first winter period the most notable counts were:Mutford: 200, Jan 22nd. Lakenheath Fen: 350, Jan 10th.

Wickhambrook: 500, Feb 22nd. Cavenham Heath: 200, Mar 18th.

There were ten late migrants lingering into May, the latest of which was at Boyton on 28th. In the second winter period, remarkably early arrivals involved one on August 19th at Breydon Water (south shore) and a flock of ten, Shotley Mews, August 23rd. Late September brought in the next arrival at Gunton, 26th. Notable second winter flocks were recorded as follows:Minsmere Beach: 200, Oct 22nd .

Thorpeness Haven: "100s", Oct 22nd. Orfordness: 250, Oct 23rd. Cavenham: 250, Oct 8th; 300, Oct 29th. Brettenham: 200, Dec 25th. BardweU: Bowbeck, 200, Oct 24th. SONG TH RUSH Turdus philomelos Fairly common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Red list. There were ten reports of single pairs breeding. Further pairs were recorded at: Lound Waterworks, nine pairs; Sizewell SWT reserve, 13 pairs; Sudbury, 19 pairs (20 in 2011 ) and 133



North Warren where, once again a significant decrease was noted, as below. Song Thrush breeding data, North Warren, 2002 to 2012:Pairs

2002 33

2003 28

2004 43

2005 45

2006 45

2007 39

2008 40

2009 47

2010 45

2011 20

2012 12

Migration of note during the autumn was reported f r o m : Minsmere: 100, Oct 22nd. Landguard: 100, Oct 22nd. REDWING Turdus iliacus Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Red list. There were few spring records and few notable counts during this period:Flixton: 100, Mar 18th.

Ipswich: Holywells Park, 200, Jan 18th. Needham Market: 100, Mar 2nd.

A poor spring was again noted at Orfordness with sightings on just four days up until March 25th. The last spring sighting was at Bradwell on May 4th (two birds). Autumn movement was heralded by a singleton at Lowestoft on September 22nd. There were 15 reports of migrant flocks during the second winter period involving 100+ birds. Thirteen of these were over a two day period from October 20th to 22nd. These included:Corton Cliffs: 500, Oct 22nd.

Thorpeness: "100s", Oct 22nd. Minsmere Beach: 1000, Oct 22nd.

Ipswich: Holywells Park, 300, Oct 20th. Long Melford: 250, Oct 20th.

Ampton: 226, Oct 20th. MISTLE THRUSH Turdus viscivorus Fairly common resident and scarce passage migrant. Amber list. The Mistle Thrush is still a familiar bird in the county as evidenced by the submission of 237 records from 89 sites. Breeding was only reported from 13, but this is probably a case of under-reporting. There were eight double-figure counts spread across the county, including the following:Beccles Marshes: 20, June 29th. Boyton Marshes RSPB: 12, Aug 3rd.

Freston: 13, Nov 22nd. Denston: 14, Sep 14th. North Stow: 12, Jan 2nd. Culford Park: 16, July 14th.

The only reports of autumn migrants came from Landguard where there were singles on nine dates from September 25th to December 13th plus three, October 15th and two, November 7th. FIELD


A Mistle Thrush was reported nesting on the stern deck of a moored yacht at Levington Marina on April 4th. Unfortunately it was reported as washed out on April 20th. C Mummery


Systematic List SPOTTED FLYCATCHER Muscicapa striata Declining summer visitor and passage migrant. Red list. First noted in the coastal belt at Landguard on April 29th heralding an excellent spring passage. A surge of multiple sightings was reported on May 11th. Corton: disused railway line, three. May 11th. Lowestoft: Kirklcy, three. May 11th. Benacre: three. May 11th. Orfordness: May 12th; May 20th. Shingle Street: at least four. May 1 Ith. Bawdsey: five, May 11th. Landguard: 11, May 11th.

At Landguard spring passage continued from April 29th until June 12th with a maximum of 11, May 11 th, which is the best site total since 12 were noted there on May 15th 2001. Both of these are exceptional spring counts but are insignificant compared with the "fall" of 150 seen at Landguard on May 9th 1998. Inland the first of spring was noted at Lackford Lakes on May 8th and two were at Pipps Ford, Barking, on May 16th. The total of breeding pairs was well down from 53 in 2011 to just 39 with a big fall in the north-east, mainly due to the loss of breeding records from some previously well-known sites. In the north-east breeding was confirmed at five sites with six pairs (19 in 2011) and possibly at another three potential sites. Breeding in the south-east was probable at three sites with a further four sites likely to have been suitable breeding venues. The west confirmed breeding at 17 sites involving 23 pairs with an additional two probable pairs which is an improvement on the 16 confirmed pairs in 2011. The best site was Brettenham where six pairs fledged five broods. Family parties were noted at Lower Ufford (four) on June 28th and at Foxburrow Farm, Melton with four also June 28th. The last recorded inland was at Lakenheath Fen on September 13th and the last sighting on the coastal belt was at Minsmere on October 4th. EUROPEAN ROBIN Erithacus rubecula Very common resident, passage migrant and winter visitor. During the first winter period nine individuals overwintered at Landguard, 15 were at Mill Stream NR, Rushmere St Andrews, January 27th, 13 at Gedgrave Marshes, January 25th, 15 at Bixley Heath, Ipswich, January 26th and 12 at Lackford Lakes, January 30th. Spring passage was noted at Landguard from February 24th until May 17th with a maximum of six on several dates. Later concentrations were recorded at Mill Stream NR with 22 on March 19th. During the breeding season 16 pairs were at Lound Waterworks and 45 at SWT Sizewell. Elsewhere 17 were noted at each of Sudbourne Hall on April 22nd, at Rushmere Hall Primary School, Ipswich on April 27th and at Brandon Country Park on April 15th. Autumn passage was noted at Landguard from August 28th until November 21st. The key passage period was from October 20th to 23rd when significant falls were detected at a number of coastal sites with peak counts at:Thorpeness: 100+, Oct 20th (51 ringed). Orfordness: 20, Oct 20th; 60, Oct 21st; 100, Oct 22nd; 80, Oct 23rd. Landguard: 200, Oct 20th (county's highest autumn count since 200 at Thorpeness, Oct 13th 2003); 60, Oct 23rd. Orfordness recorded its second-best ringing year since recording began at the site, with a total of 159. COMMON NIGHTINGALE Luscinia megarhynchos. Fairly common summer visitor and scarce passage migrant. Amber list. First noted in the county at Alton Water on April 3rd with the next reports on April 12th 135

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 at Thorpeness, Tattingstone and Lackford. In the north-east, during spring and summer, reports came from 17 sites with Minsmere holding 20 territories and 17 at North Warren. Nightingales were reported from 60 sites in the south-east with very little evidence of successful breeding except from one site at Bromeswell. Peak counts came from Alton Water with 33 reported on May 4th (during a coordinated evening count), six, Foxhall Heath on May 5th, five, Aldringham Walks on May 7th, six in the Fynn Valley on May 9th and five, Pipps Ford, Barking on May 13th. In the west four were noted at Maids Cross Hill, Lakenheath on April 26th and eight in Lackford Village on May 8th. Nightingales were recorded at 17 sites with confirmed breeding, two pairs, at Thorington Street, Stoke-by-Nayland. Breeding probably took place at Lackford Lakes and Lakenheath Fen. Breeding status is, again, difficult to assess with some gains and losses but numbers overall remain fairly stable. More information on this will be given when the results of the 2012 Nightingale Breeding Survey are published. The last reports of the year came from Thorington Street, July 27th and Orfordness where one was trapped and ringed on August 9th with the final record from Landguard on August 28th. WHITE-SPOTTED BLUETHROAT Rare passage migrant. There were no records in 2012.

Luscinia svecica


RED-FLANKED BLUETAIL Tarsiger cyanurus Very rare visitor. Having been recorded for the last six years there were no reports of this species in 2012. RED BREASTED FLYCATCHER Ficedula parva Rare passage migrant. There were two 2012 records of this species in October. Hopton-on-Sca: Warren Wood, Oct 24th (A. Easton). Southwold: Constitution Hill, Oct 11th (C. Fulcher, S Mayson, L G Woods). PIED FLYCATCHER Ficedula hypoleuca Fairly common passage migrant. Amber list. Since there were no spring reports in 2011 it was good see a sprinkling of records in 2012. All are listed and refer to individuals:Corton: disused railway line, Apr 30th; May 26th. Kessingland: Sewage Works, May I st. Shingle Street: female, Apr 30th. Landguard: Apr 29th; May 1st, May 4th. Ipswich: May 1st.

An excellent autumn passage began in August with reports from six sites in the southeast. All records are listed, with the possibility of some duplication:Corton: old Sewage Works, Sep 25th. Gunton: Warren, Sep 6th; Sep 17th; disused railway line, Sep 22nd. Lowestoft: Cleveland Road two, Aug 18th; Sparrows Nest Gardens, Aug 25th and 26th; Kirkley, Sep 6th; Linear Park, Sep 22nd; Denes, Sep 24th to 26th and Sep 29th. Pakefield: Holiday Centre, two, Sep 4th. Beccles: Marshes, Aug 26th. Kessingland: Sewage Works, Aug 13th; Sep 1st and 2nd; Caravan Park, Sep 22nd. Benacre: Oct 22nd. Minsmere: Aug 13th; Aug 16th; Aug 21st; Aug 24th to 26th. Orfordness: recorded Aug 5th until Oct 6th with a peak of four, Aug 9th. Shingle Street: Aug 15th; Sep 15th. East Lane: Sep 1st.


Systematic List Bawdsey: Hall, Aug 14th; Manor, Aug 19th; Oct 9th. Landguard: recorded from Aug 5th until Oct 29th with a peak count of five, Aug 9th. Ipswich: Holywells Park, Aug 24th; Aug 28th. Lakenheath Fen RSPB: Aug 18th.

The bird at Landguard on October 29th is the latest in Suffolk since 1982 when one was present, also at Landguard, on November 7th. BLACK REDSTART Phoenicurus ochruros. Uncommon summer visitor and passage migrant. A few overwinter. Amber list. Overwintering reports in the first period came from Breydon South Wall, January 13th and Ness Point, Lowestoft where a male was recorded on several dates between January 1 st and March 9th. Elsewhere in the north-east there were three present at Sizewell on January 6th with a noteworthy five there on January 17th this being the best winter count in Suffolk since seven were noted at the same location in January 1998. In the south-east there were two in Felixstowe on January 2nd. a single bird was on Upper Hollesley Common on three dates from January 11th to February 11th and two were at Great Blakenham on January 30th. Being rarely reported during the winter in the west it was noteworthy that a male was reported from Lakenheath Fen RSPB on February 12th and another male at Hinderclay on February 16th and, presumably the same bird, on February 21 st. The first signs of spring migration were widely recorded from March 23rd at 27 coastal sites with peak counts from:Benacre: Sluice, six, Mar 29th; three. Mar 30th; three, Apr 6th. Sizewell: three, Apr 1st. Orfordness: three, Mar 29th; three, Mar 31st. Landguard: three were recorded on four dates, Mar 23rd; Apr 1 st; Apr 7th; Apr 8th. In the west single birds were noted at Haverhill on March 31 st and Barrow on April 17th. Once again a singing male was noted on the rooftops in Bury St Edmunds from May 19th until May 24th. Additional records came from Landguard with a male noted on June 25th; Silent Street, Ipswich where a male was singing, June 4th and Alton Water, May 17th. Just two pairs were known to have bred in the county, at Sizewell Power Station. Early autumn passage was noted at Landguard from July 3rd and a single on Sutton Common on July 13th. Black Redstarts were widely reported in the coastal belt with peak counts noted from October 20th until the month's end. Southwold: Campsite, three. Oct 20th. Dunwich: five, Oct 23rd. Orfordness: five, Oct 23rd. Bawdsey: three, Oct 22nd; four, Oct 23rd. Landguard: three, Oct 21st; six, Oct 22nd; three, Oct 23rd. In the west just two reports were received, of a male at Kedington on October 30th and a singleton at West Stow CP from October 14th to 19th. Late records of singletons, possibly preparing to overwinter, came from:Bradwell: Nov 5th. Easton Broad: Nov 30th. Minsmere: Nov 3rd. Orfordness: Nov 3rd. Felixstowe: Nov 9th; Dec 4th to 9th.

COMMON REDSTART Phoenicurus phoenicurus. Uncommon summer visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. In the north-east the first report came from Minsmere Dunes with a male present on April 11th. A further six sites in the north-east recorded singletons during the spring. Landguard recorded a better spring passage than in recent years from April 10th until June 4th with one or two present on 20 dates. In the Sandlings the first returning individuals were noted on Upper Hollesley Common on April 22nd with three present and a singleton at Sutton on 137

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 the same day. Inland records came from Lakenheath Fen where a male was present on May 9th and Bemer's Heath where a male was noted singing on May 12th, June 12th and 19th. Breeding was noted with one pair at Minsmere, three at Woodbridge Airfield and eight on heaths of Hollesley and Sutton, the Sandling's best breeding year since 2004. Inland a pair was noted with six young at North Stow in The King's Forest on June 6th, this being the first breeding attempt for at least six years in the Suffolk Brecks. It takes the county total to 13 breeding pairs which is the highest since 2004. Autumn passage mainly involved singletons in the coastal belt with multiple counts from:Gunton: two, Sep 24th. Lowestoft: three Sep 24th; Ness Point, two, Sep 29th. Benacre: two, Sep 26th. Landguard: maximum of six, Sep 25th; two, Oct 22nd. Cavenham: Temple Bridge, two, Aug 18th. The last report of the year came from Lowestoft where two were present on October 25th concluding another poor autumn passage. WHINCHAT SaxĂ­cola rubetra. Declining passage migrant. Formerly bred. Amber list. The first spring records came from the North Denes, Lowestoft, Orfordness and Landguard all on April 29th. There was a slight improvement in passage numbers compared with 2011, albeit that most were noted in just two days. Reported from 11 coastal sites, multiple records came from:Lowestoft: North Denes, two, Apr 29th. North Cove: Castle Marsh, two, May 4th. Southwold: two, Apr 30th. Orfordness: two males, Apr 29th. Landguard: five, Apr 30th. In the west of the county the only report came from Cavenham Heath where two were present on May 4th with a male remaining until May 6th. The final spring record was from Landguard on May 23rd. The autumn passage got under way with the first report from Hollesley Marshes on August 1st. Although noted . _ , .. . P . Winchat PeterBeeson at 30 coastal sites, this was the worst autumn passage on record for this species with further confirmation given in the Orfordness Report with an autumn ringing total of five - just ten years ago the total ringed was 55. The best single-figure counts came from:Pakefield: Cliff, four, Aug 18th; four, Sep 4th. Benacre: Sluice, three, Sep 27th. Easton Broad: three, Sep 11th.

Westleton: Heath, three, Sep 25th and 26th. Minsmere: three, Sep 27th. Orfordness: three, Aug 18th; nine, Aug 26th. Shingle Street: three. Aug 28th; four, Aug 30th. East Lane: four, Sep 3rd.

Landguard: three, Aug 24th. A noteworthy report came from Pipps Ford, Barking where a singleton was noted September 3rd. In the west reports came from only four sites with a maximum of two at Cavenham Heath on October 12th. The final report of the year was from Woodbridge on October 26th. 138

Systematic List EUROPEAN STONECHAT SaxĂ­cola torquatus Fairly common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. During the first winter period reports in the north-east came from nine sites with single sightings except for two at Breydon South Wall on February 11th and two at Oulton Marshes on January 17th. In the south-east reports came from eight sites all involving singles except for up to six in January and three in February on Orfordness. In the west of the county the species was recorded at three sites with a maximum of three at Cavenham Heath on March 21 st. One can only but be concerned about the breeding status of this species at some sites as the overall total has fallen from 71 pairs in 2010 to 47 pairs in 2012, a fall of 34% in just two years and the lowest number for ten years. Dunwich posted a dramatic fall from 24 in 2011 to just 11 in 2012, a second consecutive fall and there seems little doubt that the successive hard winters are taking their toll at this site. Minsmere and Westleton Heath both held five pairs, a slight improvement of one at each site. Orfordness also recorded a fall from five or six pairs in 2011 to just three in 2012. The East Suffolk Sandlings' breeding figures remain stable with a combined total of 18 pairs. Similar concern is being raised in the west where breeding was probable at seven sites but numbers involved only single pairs except at Cavenham Heath where two pairs were present. Four adults and six juveniles were noted at Cavenham on September 13th. Autumn and winter dispersal saw reports from ten sites in the north-east and nine sites in the south-east including six noted at Hollesley Marshes on October 30th. Orfordness reported a peak of six in October. There were just three individuals noted at two sites in the west. NORTHERN WHEATEAR Oenanthe oenanthe Common passage migrant and uncommon summer visitor. Amber list. Marginally later than usual, the first reports all came from the coast on March 16th at Benacre Broad, Minsmere (three), Thorpeness and Landguard (seven). In the next few days numbers increased with five noted at Minsmere, five at Thorpeness and nine at Landguard all on March 18th. In the west of the county Lackford Lakes and Cavenham both recorded the first sightings on March 17th. In April the peak movement occurred during the second week. This was sustained throughout the month at Landguard. The highest counts were reported f r o m : Hopton-on-Sea: 16, Apr 30th. Lowestoft: North Denes, 11, Apr 12th; 20, Apr 30th. Pakefield: Cliff, ten, Apr 11th. Benacre: Sluice, 29, Apr 12th; ten, Apr 22nd. Landguard: 37, Apr 11th; 17, Apr 12th; 18, Apr 20th; 17, Apr 22nd; 24, Apr 25th. Cavenham Heath: nine, Apr 16th, including two of the Greenland race. Brandon: Mayday Farm, ten, Apr 21st. During May the peak counts were from:Corton: ten, Mayl 1th. Kessingland: ten. May 3rd.

Benacre: Ness, 12, May 6th. Orfordness: 20, May 4th, including 16 of the Greenland race. Landguard: 20, May 5th; 17, May 6th; 22, May 9th; 33, May 11th; 31, May 15th.

Barking: Pipps Fori seven, May 10th is a very notable record. Orfordness was the only breeding site, recording an increase from nine to eleven pairs which is the highest total in the county since 1995 when six sites supported 13 pairs. All were seen actively feeding young around nest holes; all the nests were located under concrete roads. The autumn followed a similar pattern to that of the Whinchat and can only be described as very poor with just one double-figure count (in 2006 the lowest count of the autumn was ten noted at Orfordness). Passage began with early reports from Kessingland Denes on July 19th and Benacre on the same day. The best counts came from:Lowestoft: North Denes, eight, Sep 25th. 139

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Orfordness: maximum of 11 in Sep. Hollesley Marshes: four Aug 1st.

Landguard: seven, Aug 10th. The west of the county fared much the same with reports from just five sites all of which were singles other than two at Knettishall Airfield on August 18th. Late individuals were noted at Covehithe on October 30th and 31 st and Orfordness with singles on October 28th and the last Suffolk record on November 3rd. HEDGE ACCENTOR (DUNNOCK) Prunella nodularis Very common resident and fairly common migrant. Amber list An interesting record of an abnormal individual was noted at Moreton Hall, Bury St Edmunds on March 18th with sandy plumage, white tail and a grey head. Spring passage noted at Landguard was very light from March 1st to March 28th with further records on May 6th, 15th and 17th. Breeding records as usual were few but 31 pairs nested at Sizewell SWT and 12 pairs at Landguard. An individual of the nominate continental race was reported from Boyton Marshes on July 15th (R. Etheridge) - very early for an autumn immigrant. At Landguard autumn passage was noted from September 17th to November 12th. HOUSE SPARROW Passer domesticus Common but declining resident. Red List. There were 165 records from 39 locations across the county, however, the flock sizes in the east of the county were again noticeably down on previous years with peak counts of:Kessingland: 28, Jan 12th. Kessingland Cliffs: 20, Jan 9th. Shingle Street: 20, Oct 15th. Hacheston: 21, Sep 16th.

Trimley St Mary: 25, July 16th; 30, Aug 5th and 31st; 30, Sep 25th. Felixstowe: Walton Marshes, 25, Mar 31st; 30, Aug 11th; 20, Aug 31st; 30, Nov 26th. Trimley St Martin: Loompit Lake. 25, Mar 10th. Brantham: Cattawade, 40, Sep 1st. Badingham: 52, Sep 1st. Brettenham: 20, Jan 10th. Sudbury: 60, Dec 11th. Tuddenham St Mary: 55, Sep 21st.

At Landguard five to ten pairs nested with a peak count of 164 roosting on August 8th. SPANISH SPARROW Passer hispaniolensis Accidental. This bird, the first Suffolk record of the species, was photographed by John Richardson and subsequently identified by Paul Holmes. See article on Page 34. Landguard: male, Aug 24th and present, on and off, until Sep 14th at least. EURASIAN TREE SPARROW Passer montanus Uncommon and declining resident. Scarce passage migrant. Red List. There were 60 reports from 28 localities (35 localities in 2011 ). Flock sizes were similar to the previous year with a maximum of five birds seen at both Barsham Marshes and Corton Cliffs in the north-east of the county. Significant flocks were reported from Ampton in the west where winter feeding is undertaken. Peak counts throughout the county were:Gedgrave: 17, Jan 7th.

Ampton: 80, Feb 17th; 200, Feb 18th; 75, Feb 20th; 67, Aug 14th; 70, Aug 21st; 80, Oct 20th; 120, Nov 28th; 160, Dec 30th. 140

Systematic List Cavenham: 23, Feb 11th and 13th.

30, Feb 26th. There was no evidence of any migration on the coast.


YELLOW WAGTAIL Motacilla flava flavissima Rapidly declining summer visitor and passage migrant. Red list. There were 226 reports from 87 sites with the spring passage starting with a male at Orfordness on April 6th with the last bird recorded at Minsmere on October 1 lth.The only double-figure count in spring was at Cavenham:Cavenham: 19, May 4th.

Autumn passage was stronger with double-figure counts at four sites:— Burgh Castle: 12, Aug 7th. Minsmere: ten, Sep 15th. Minsmere Levels: ten, Sep 10th: 20, Sep 9th; 18, Sep 11th; ten, Sep 12th and 13th; 16, Sep 16th. Knettishall Airfield: 19, Aug 18th.

At Landguard during autumn passage one was recorded north and 119 south between July 20th and October 5th. Blue-headed Wagtail M.f. flava Uncommon passage migrant. Amber list. Birds were noted in the spring at eight sites:Covehithe: May 2nd. Boyton Marshes: Apr 30th; May 8th. Shingle Street: two. May 4th; May 11th.

Bawdsev: East Lane, May 3rd and 4th. Sutton Common: May 25th and 27th. Falkenham Marshes: June 4th. Felixstowe Ferry: Apr 24th. Yellow Wagtail (Blue Headed) Peter

Grey-headed Wagtail M.f. thunbergi Scarce passage migrant. Amber list. As in 2011 birds of this sub-species were seen at two sites in spring:-


Bovton Marshes: May 14th. (G Grieco) Trimley Marshes: May 4th. (P J Holmes)

GREY WAGTAIL Motacilla cinerea Fairly common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. This colourful bird continues to be well observed and was recorded from 26 locations in the north-east of the county, of which two held more than two birds:Corton Cliffs: three, Oct 13th. Kessingland Sewage Works: three, Mar 17th.

A similar picture comes from the south-east of the county with 18 locations of which two held more than two birds:Landguard: three, presumably autumn migrants, Sep 16th. Needham Market: three, Feb 21st.

The west of the county had records i in 33 sites and breeding was noted at several of them:Cavenham Pits: four, Feb 27th. At Landguard during autumn migration 47 south were recorded between August 9th and December 9th. PIED WAGTAIL Motacilla alba Very common resident, passage migrant and winter and summer visitor. Amber list. This species is widely distributed in the county with 133 records from 56 locations. The 141

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 highest counts across the county were:Kessingland: Sewage Works, 30, Feb 18th; 35, Mar 3rd; 30, Mar 6th; 30, Nov 24th. Bradwell: New Road, 30, Feb 27th. St James South Elmham: Common Road, 60, Jan 2nd; 100 west, Jan 15th; 60, Mar 3rd. Woodbridge: 100, Feb 13th.

Felixstowe: Walton Marshes, 30, Nov 21st and 25th; 25, Dec 17th and 19th. Stowmarket: 130, Feb 16th.

Long Melford: 41, Dec 8th; Sewage Works, 54, Dec 29th. Lackford Lakes: 50, Mar 6th; 100, Mar 19th; 50, Mar 21st. Mickle Mere: 30, Dec 23rd. Lakenheath Fen: 100, Nov 14th; 30, Dec 16th.

On Orfordness no breeding pairs were located for the first time in many years. At Landguard one pair nested in the nearby dock and local birds accounted for most site records. Spring passage was negligible. During autumn passage at Landguard 223 were recorded moving south between August 28th and November 9th with a maximum of 25 south October 4th. White Wagtail M.a, alba Fairly common passage migrant. There were 38 reports (57 in 2011) from a total of 20 sites (31 in 2011); this species is always recorded predominantly on spring passage with few autumn records. The first arrival was at Landguard on March 19th. The highest counts were three birds at Covehithe on March 21st and three at Boyton on April 9th.The autumn records were as follows:Gorleston: Aug 17th.

Lowestoft: July 27th; Oct 27th and 28th. Landguard: two, Sep 6th.

RICHARD'S PIPIT Anthus richardi Rare visitor. After a blank year in 2011 a single record of this species was located and photographed in late autumn:Covehithe: Nov 8th to 11th (C Fulcher). TAWNY PIPIT Anthus campestris Rare visitor. After a blank year in 2011 a single bird of this species was located on a typical spring date:Landguard: May 6th. (E W Patrick, M Piotrowski). OLIVE-BACKED PIPIT Anthus hodgsoni Very rare visitor. As in 2011 a single bird of this species, the fifth county record, was located. As yet no Olive-backed Pipit has been located south of Thorpeness. Corton: Oct 23rd to 25th. (J A Brown et al.). TREE PIPIT Anthus trivialis Declining summer visitor and passage migrant. Red list. There were 60 records from 28 locations in the county. In the north-east and south-east of the county all 35 records were of single birds, 18 in spring and 17 in autumn, the only exception being those from Landguard. The picture in the west of the county was significantly different in that 22 were spring records and only three were in autumn. An exceptional 18 birds were recorded in The King's Forest (north-east section) on April 22nd 142

Systematic List with other counts of two to seven birds noted on eight dates between April 14th to June 14th in various sections of The King's Forest. Other records of more than single birds were:Elveden: Parsonage Heath, two, Apr 21st. Thetford Warren: two, Apr 21st.

Santon Downham: three, Apr 28th. It does appear that the Tree Pipits has now been lost as a breeding species on the Sandlings Heaths in the east. At Landguard 15 were noted between July 24th and October 13th with a daily maximum of four south, August 22nd. MEADOW PIPIT Anthus pratensis Common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. There were 142 records from 50 locations in the county. Significant flocks were reported from:Breydon South Wall: 30, Feb 11th; 68, Sep 20th.

Corton Cliffs: 215 south, Oct 13th; 50, Oct 13th and 20th. Covehithe: 60, Jan 15th. Aide Estuary: 105, Jan 8th. Hollesley Marshes: 35, Sep 21st. Shingle Street: 45, Nov 13th. Pipps Ford: 33, Oct 6th. Great Waldingfield: Airfield 60, Jan 9th.

Stradishall: Airfield, 70, Apr 16th. Cavenham Heath: 40, Sep 16th; 30, Oct 5th, 13th and 28th. Santon Downham: 30, Apr 4th.

Breeding was confirmed at few sites. On Orfordness there was an estimated breeding population of 45-52 pairs; this included 11 pairs on "the Point", an area that had not been counted since 2008. Autumn passage on Orfordness was lighter than usual with maxima of 120 on September 16th and 80 on October 7th. At Landguard five pairs bred. Autumn passage at Landguard was from September 2nd through until December 23rd with a total of 2914 birds including a maximum one-day count of 359 south on September 16th. Eighty migrant birds were grounded on September 29th. Autumn passage at Thorpeness was noted from September 17th through until November 12th with a maximum one-day count on September 30th of 409 south. ROCK PIPIT Anthuspetrosus Fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant. There were 109 records from 51 coastal locations. During the first winter period there were numerous reports of one to three birds with higher counts at six locations:Breydon South Wall: four, Jan 20th. Walberswick: six, Jan 10th.

Slaughden: five, Feb 17th. Sudbourne: Cowton House Marshes, five, Feb 6th; 26, Feb 10th. Gedgrave Marshes: five, Feb 9th. Havergate Island: 26, Feb 6th.

During the second winter period reports of one to three birds continued with higher counts at five locations:Dunwich: Dingle Marshes, four, Oct 30th; Corporation Marshes, 11, Nov 23rd.. Minsmere: four, Oct 12th. Slaughden: five, Dec 21st. Orfordness: 15, Dec 16th.

Landguard: eight, Sep 25th to Nov 9th. On Orfordness the first autumn bird was noted on September 22nd with a peak of 15 on December 16th. As usual there were no reports from the west of the county. 143

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Scandinavian Rock Pipit A.p. littoralis There were six records of this sub-species in the county from three locations:Felixstowe Ferry: two, Jan 1st; two Feb 24th; three. Mar 31st. Landguard: Jan 7th; Mar 10th. Levington Creek: three, Jan 2nd.

WATER PIPIT Anthus spinoletta Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. There were 52 reports from 20 sites mostly of one to three birds. The only reports from the west of the county were from Lakenheath Fen where one bird wintered from January until March and, at the other end of the year, there were three present on November 17th. Counts exceeding three were at:— Flixton Marshes: five, Feb 24th; four, Mar 3rd. Dunwich: Dingle Marshes, four. Nov 5th; Shore Pools, five, Dec 2nd. Farnham: Botany Farm, four. Mar 8th.

CHAFFINCH Fringilla eoelebs Very common resident, winter visitor and passage migrant. Categories A and E. There were 244 reports from 60 locations with reasonable-sized flocks (over 50 birds) reported from eight locations in the county covering both the first and second winter periods:Thorpeness: 90, Oct 18th; 60, Oct 27th. Gedgrave: 155, Jan 25th. Butley River: 250, Jan 1st; 200, Feb 13th.

Wantisden: Staverton Thicks, 70, Dec 24th. Kirton Creek: 80, Feb 26th. Stoke-by-Nayland : Withermarsh Green, 100, Dec 8th; Giffords Hall, 300, Feb 2nd. Giffords Hail: 300, Feb 2nd. Lackford Lakes: 97, Nov 20th. The King's Forest (south-west): 300, Nov 25th.

A total of 121 breeding pairs (116 in 2011) was noted at Sizewell SWT reserve. Autumn passage at Landguard was noted from September 4th to December 13th with 1633 (1478 in 2011) south or in off the sea, including maxima of 120 south, September 29th, 170 south, September 30th and 346 south, October 4th. BRAMBLING Fringilla montifringilla Fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant There were 157 reports from 73 locations. The only significant first winter records were:Gedgrave: 50, Jan 7th; Marshes, 80, Jan 25th. Santon Downham: 250, Jan 15th.

The last sighting in the spring was of a singleton in Kirkley in Lowestoft on May 8th. The second winter flocks across the county included outstanding records from Cavenham: Benacre: 60, Oct 30th. Covehithe: 100, Oct 29th; 80, Oct 30th; 100, Nov 2nd 3rd and 9th. Cavenham: Bunkers Barn, 500, Dec 23rd; 1000, Dec 27th.

The 1000 recorded at Cavenham on December 27th is the first four-figure flock in Suffolk since January 1994 when 1500 were at Eriswell. Autumn passage at Landguard was recorded from September 22nd to November 12th with a total of 57 birds noted. EUROPEAN GREENFINCH Carduelis chloris Very common resident and passage migrant. Categories A and E. This well-recorded bird produced only two reports in the first winter period of counts involving 50 or more birds:Flixton: 65, Jan 15th; 50, Mar 14th.


Systematic List Only two reports of flocks exceeding 50 birds was reported in the second half of the year as against eight records of between 60 and 270 in 2011 : Landguard: 140, Oct 20th. Lackford Lakes: 77, Oct 30th.

Autumn passage at Landguard recorded 1013 (885 in 2011) south from September 17th to November 12th, with a maximum of 340 south on October 5th. EUROPEAN SERIN Serinus serinus Rare migrant. Amber list. Another lean year, with records from just two coastal sites:Lowestoft Denes: Apr 11th and 12th (S Jones).

Landguard: Apr 10th (J Zantboer, N Odin et al.); female seen on various dates between Apr 30th and July 13th (P J Holmes, G Bennett, N Odin et al.); male singing at Custom's House, May 4th (W J Brame). EUROPEAN GOLDFINCH Carduelis carduelis Very common summer visitor and passage migrant. Overwinters in small numbers. There were 249 records from 68 locations. A number of records were received for the first winter period with smallish flocks at:Kessingland Sewage Works: 35, Feb 18th.

Gedgrave: 50, Jan 7th; Marshes, 63, Jan 25th. Ipswich: Holywells Park, 85, Jan 1st; 32, Jan 15th and 29th; 32, Apr 29th. Lakenheath Fen: 30, Feb 25th. At Thorpeness spring passage involved 116 north on May 7th and 45 south, May 10th. At Landguard spring passage involved 409 south from March 10th to June 10th with a maximum of 54 south on May 17th. These dates are significantly later than in 2011. The second winter period produced many sightings of larger size flocks:Carlton Marshes: 50, Oct 3rd. Butlev River: 200, Oct 14th. Boyton Marshes: 50, Oct 4th.

Ipswich: Holywells Park, 100. Sep 29th; 50, Dec 15th; 70, Dec 22nd; 50, Dec 27th; 44. Dec 29th. Pipps Ford: 72, Sep 10th.

Newton: Newton Green, 100, Nov 12th. Great Cornard: 60, Oct 16th.

Sudbury: 50, Oct 28th. Chilton: 50, Oct 13th. Brettenham: 30, Nov 3rd. Cavenham Heath: 40, Sep 16th.

BardweU: Bowbeck, 200, Oct 7th. Lakenheath Fen: 40, Nov 1st; 100, Dec 30th. Autumn passage south was reported from a number of coastal sites, the most significant being:Corton Cliffs: 157, Oct 13th; 50, Oct 20th.

Gunton: 50, Oct 20th. Thorpeness: 315, Sep 30th; 445, Oct 2nd; 1140, Oct 4th; 60, Oct 8th; 530, Oct 13th; 59, Oct 14th; 140, Oct 15th. Shingle Street: 550, Oct 2nd; 500, Oct 4th.

Landguard recorded 8932 south (8464 in 2010, 16226 in 2011) from September 9th to December 8th with a maximum south in October of 1797 on 4th, and an autumn maximum of 50 grounded birds on October 23rd. EURASIAN SISKIN Carduelis spinus Common winter visitor and passage migrant. Uncommon resident. There were 120 records from 59 locations with another good showing across the county in the first winter period, and the following peak counts:Kessingland: Levels, 80, Feb 28th North Cove SWT: 150, Feb 12th.


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Minsmere: 110, Jan 24th. Tunstall Forest: 60, Mar 21 st. Upper Hollesley Common: 40, Feb 21 st. Needham Market: 50, Jan 21 st. Ampton Water: 50, Feb 28th. Lackford Lakes: 150, Jan 18th.

Thetford: Olley's Farm, 50, Mar 19th. Santon Downham: 50, Jan 8th; 50, Feb 20th.

The second winter period also produced some significant peak counts:Corton Cliffs: 52 south, Oct 13th. North Cove SWT: 150, Dec 2nd. Minsmere: 150, Dec 13th. Sizewell Beach: 120 in off the sea, Nov 23rd.

Thorpeness: between seven and 70 flying south on various dates between Sep 29th and Nov 9th. Culford Park: 120, Dec 18th. Lackford Lakes: 100, Oct 30th; 50, Nov 6th; 150, Dec 7th; 60, Dec 17th. West Stow: CP, 40, Nov 26th; 100, Dec 21 st. Santon Downham: 60, Nov 12th; 350, Dec 21st.

Autumn passage at Landguard was noted from September 5th to December 17th with 1011 (1226 in 2010, 1793 in 2011 ) south or in off the sea and a maximum count of 83 south October 18th. COMMON LINNET Carduelis cannahina Common summer visitor and passage migrant. Overwinters in small numbers. Red List. There were 184 records from 82 locations with sizeable flocks in both winter periods. Flocks of 100 upwards were reported in the first winter period from the following locations:Pakefield Cliffs: 105, Feb 16th.

Walberswick: Hoist Covert, 120, Mar 29th. Thorpeness: 102, Apr 12th; 204 north, May 5th; 123 north, May 7th. SnapeWarren: 112, Feb26th. Sudbourne: Woods, 230, Mar 22nd. Gedgrave: 100, Jan 7th.

Falkenham: 350, Jan 28th. Pipps Ford: 152,Apr7th.

Ixworth: Dairy Farm, 550, Feb 17th. Pakenham: Puttockshill, 100, Feb 5th. Hinderclay: 800, Jan 16th; 250, Jan 23rd. Icklingham: 100, Jan 16th,

Significant flocks of 100 upwards were reported in the second half of the year from:Walberswick: 120, Nov 23rd. Thorpeness: 180 south, Oct4th; 100 south, Oct 13th. Brettenham: 100, Oct 7th. Timworth: 100, Nov 8th; 150, Nov 13th. Thetford Heath: 160, Oct 6th.

As in 2010 and 2011 up to 40 pairs bred at Landguard with several more nearby; the first juveniles were noted on May 17th and 75 birds were on site throughout the breeding season with up to 120 on site in August, numbers declining thereafter to single figures in December. Autumn passage at Landguard involved 577 (1185 in 2011) south from September 18th to November 9th with a maximum of 121 south on October 4th. On Orfordness the breeding population remains stable with an estimated 15-20 pairs, the same as 2011. TWITE Carduelis flavirostris Locally fairly common winter visitor and passage migrant. Red List. As in the previous year most of the reports came from the Walberswick/Dingle area. No 146

Systematic List records were received from the west of the county. First winter reports received are summarised as follows:Burgh Castlc: five, Jan 15th to Feb 28th; four. Mar 3rd. Gisleham: Feb 8th.

Southwold: 30, Feb 1 lth; Woodsend Marshes, 25, Feb 9th; 31, Feb 26th. Dunwich: Dingle Marshes, between eight and 45 recorded Jan 3rd. to Jan 28th. Waldringfield: 16, Jan lst and 4th. Lexington Creek: ten, Feb 23rd.

Second winter reports received are summarised as follows: Corton Cliffs: four, Nov 9th. Pakefield Beach: 19, Nov 9th. Benacre Broad: three, Oct 31st.

Walberswick: 12, Nov 30th; 40, Dec 2nd. Dunwich: Dingle Marshes, between four and 40 recorded Oct 29th to Dec 9th. Minsmere Dunes: two, Oct 27th.

Bawdsey Manor: five, Oct 22nd. Sutton: Stonner Point, 19, Dec 16th. Falkenham: four, Oct 14th. LESSER RE DPOLL Carduelis cabaret Uncommon and declining resident. Declining winter visitor and passage migrant. Red List. This species continues to be widely reported with 190 records from 79 locations. First winter period peak counts were:North Cove: 20, Jan 2nd: 20, Feb 12th.

Bentley: Old Hall Wood, 34, Jan 8th. East Bergholt: 25, Jan 2nd. Santon Downham: 50, Jan 8th; 100, Mar4th; 70, May 12th.

There was an increase in reports in the second winter period with peak counts:-

Lesser Redpoll Peter B e e s o n

Gunton: 40, Oct 13th.

Kessingland: Sewage Works, 36, Oct 13th. Thorpeness: 36 south, Oct 4th; 30 south, Oct 13th; 25 south, Nov 12th; Haven, 200 south, Oct 13th; 70 south, Oct 20th. Alton Water: 30, Nov 24th. Pipps Ford: 66, Dec 3rd; 32, Dec 9th.

Landguard: 90, south, Oct 13th. Lackford Lakes: 40, Dec 17th. The King's Forest (south-west): 75, Oct 13th.

Lakenheath Fen: 70, Oct 2lst. On Orfordness the ringing total of 195 was signi ficantly up on the 112 of the previous year. Autumn passage at Landguard involved 504 (1092 in 2011 ) south from September 15th to December 1 lth with a maximum of 90 south on October 13th. MEALY (COMMON) REDPOLL Carduelis flammea Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant The less common of the two regular redpoll species with only nine reports from seven localities (28 localities in 2011). Ail records were of one or two birds; the sightings were as follows:North Cove: Jan 2nd; Feb 12th.

Worlingham: Marsh Lane, Jan 4th. Snape: Abbey Farm, two, Jan 28th; Nov 28th. Pipps Ford: Dec 19th. Lackford Lakes: Mar 8th.


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Livermere Lake: Nov 25th.

Bardwell: Bowbeck, two, Feb 2nd. ARCTIC REDPOLL Carduelis hornemanni hornemanni Very rare winter visitor. The bird at Slaughden of the race hornemanni was probably the most viewed and photographed bird in Suffolk during 2012. It is the first bird of this race to be recorded in Suffolk. See article on Page 36. Slaughden: single present between Dec 8th and 19th. (C D Barley, B J Small, L Woods el at.). COMMON CROSSBILL Loxia curvirostra Locally common resident and irruptive visitor. This species continues to be widely reported with 223 records from 79 locations. As in the previous year, there were generally higher counts in the first half of the year although fewer birds were reported than in 2011. The following peak counts were:Gunton Warren: 25 north, June 12th. Fritton: Waveney Forest, 20, June 17th. Westleton Heath: 60 north. May 24th. Westleton Walks: 120, May 25th.

Dunwich: 28, Apr 1st; Heath, 25, May 25th. Minsmere Levels: 26, May 15th.

Sizewell: Goose Hill, 30, June 1st. Thorpeness Haven: 25 south, Aug 27th. Snape: Abbey Farm, 25, July 14th. Upper Holleslev Common: regularly reported between Jan 1 st and June 16th, highest count 120, June 1 st. Sutton Common: 40, May 2nd; 23, June 7th. Tunstall Forest: 25, May 26th. Ampton: 20, July 21st. Berners Heath: 20, Mar 18th.

Thetford: Olley's Farm, 20, Feb 17th. Thetford: High Lodge, 25, Apr 15th. Birds on passage at Landguard totalled 265 between May 14th and August 27th, the site's highest annual total since 1997, with a maximum of 65 south on June 6th. COMMON ROSEFINCH Carpodacus erythrinus Rare passage migrant. Has bred. The first records for Orfordness involved a juvenile photographed in the village on September 1st (D Crawshaw, M Marsh, G Stannard) and an immature was also found at the Holm Oaks on October 20th, which was trapped and ringed (D Crawshaw, M Marsh, G Stannard, G J Jobson). COMMON BULLFINCH Pyrrhula pyrrhula Common but declining resident. Amber List This species continues to be widely reported with 277 records from 129 locations. However, only ten localities had over five birds, these being:Carlton Colville: Marsh Lane, six, Feb 27th. Beccles: Cut Throat Lane, 14, Dec 6th. St Cross South Elmham: Hall, six. May 16th; seven, Dec 16th.

Minsmere: six, Nov 26th. Great Glemham: nine, Feb 19th.

Stoke-by-Navland: Thorington Street, six, Oct 21st. Chilton: eight, Jan 9th; seven, Oct 7th. Elveden: Centre Pares, seven, Apr 5th. Santon Downham: six, Jan 1st.

North Warren had eight breeding territories. 148

Systematic List Northern Bullfinch P.p. pyrrhula There were no records of this nominate race reported in 2012. HAWFINCH Coccothraustes coccothraustes Uncommon resident and rare passage migrant. Red List This increasingly scarce species was reported from just four localities (eight in 2011), all on the coast:Lowestoft: Kirkley, Apr 6th. Thorpeness: Sep 23rd and 26th; Oct 23rd; Haven, in off sea, Nov 14th. Landguard: Oct 9th.

SNOW BUNTING Plectrophenax nivalis Locally common winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list There were 134 records from 32 locations. Recorded from 31 coastal locations with just a single inland record. Peak counts were:Gorleston Harbour: 20, Nov 11th. Lowestoft Harbour: 27 south, Jan 14th. Pakefield Beach: 12, Feb 10th; 15, Nov 8th; 17, Nov 9th.

Kessingland: up to 30 recorded between Jan 5th and 31st; 12 - 80 recorded between Feb 1st and 27th. Covehithe Broad: 11, Oct 31st.

Dunwich: Dingle Marshes, six to 12 birds recorded between Oct 29th and Nov 11th. Minsmere Beach: five to ten birds recorded between Oct 27th and Nov 11th. Shingle Street: 12, Nov 24th; 12 Nov 30th; 11, Dec 16th. Bawdsey: seven to 11 recorded between Jan 1st and 21st; nine, Dec 29th and 30th; East Lane, nine or ten recorded between Jan 1st and 15th. Landguard: up to 15 recorded between Jan 2nd and Mar 12th; up to six recorded between Oct 27th and Nov 29th. Knettishall: Airfield, Nov 3rd (L Gregory). LAPLAND LONGSPUR Calcarius lapponicus Uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant. Amber list. Overall there were 26 records from a number of coastal sites. However, there were no records from the west of the county in 2012. A scarce species in the first winter period with only one record:Benacre Pits: Mar 16th.

Recorded in the second winter period from September 29th with reports from 11 coastal locations:Lowestoft: North Denes, two, Oct 13th. Corton Cliffs: two to five on various dates between Oct 13th and Nov 18th. Benacre: Nov 14th; Nov 24th. Southwold: Town Marshes, Oct 11th. Minsmere: one or two on various dates between Sep 29th and Nov 23rd. Thorpeness: Oct 30th. Slaughden: Oct 22nd. Shingle Street: Oct 21st; Nov 24th.

Felixstowe Ferry: King's Fleet, Dec 19th. Landguard: south, Oct 13th. Lower Holbrook: Nov 21st.

YELLOWHAMMER Emberiza citrinella Common resident and passage migrant. Red List There were 149 records from 82 locations. As in recent years most of the larger gatherings came from the west of the county with the exception of Barsham Marshes and Beccles. The peak counts being:Barsham Marshes: 60, Mar 10th; 50, Nov 16th; 45, Dec 6th.




Beccles: CutThroat Lane, 150, Dec 6th. Falkenham: 30, Jan 28th. Alton Water: 30, Jan Ist.

Stoke-by-Nayland: Gifford's Hall, 50, Jan 6th; 100, Feb 2nd. Great Waldingfield: Airfield, 40, Jan 9th; 50, Feb 18th. Knettishall Heath: 34, Nov 25th. Pakenham: 120, Mar 15th. Hinderclay: 200, Feb 18th.

There were a number of breeding territories reported. Minsmere with nine and North Warren with 22 breeding pairs were the highest numbers. LITTLE BUNTING Emberiza pusilla Very rare visitor. This fourth site record is only Suffolk's second spring record. Landguard: Apr 24th (N Croft).

REED BUNTING Emberiza schoeniclus Yellowhammer SuGough Common resident and passage migrant. Amber list. There were 117 records from 60 locations. A number of small flocks were reported across the county with the only three-figure counts Coming from the west of the county. Significantly large counts were made at Lackford Lakes. Peak counts within the county were:Barsham Marshes: 20, Mar 1 Ith.

Sudbourne: Cowton House Marshes, 55, Feb 1 Ith. Kirton Creek: 40, Feb 26th.

Falkenham: 30, Jan 28th. Ampton: 40, Dec 17th. Llvermere Lake: 40, Dec 27th.

Lackford Lakes: 340, Feb 18th; 494, Oct 15th; 550, Oct 30th; 464, Nov 20th. Bardwell: Bowbeck, 30, Feb lOth. Hinderclay: 100, Feb 5th.

Breeding reports which came mostly from the east of the county included a continuing decline to 24 pairs at North Warren (27 in 2011, 34 in 2010, 45 in 2009, 41 in 2008 and 35 in 2007). The breeding estimate at Orfordness of 17-23 pairs was a little down on the previous year's total of 19-24 pairs. The ringing total of 98 was close to the five-year average. At Minsmere the breeding estimate was 63 pairs (64 in 2011, 77 in 2010, 52 in 2009, 73 in 2008 and 69 in 2 0 0 7 / CORN BUNTING Emberiza calandra Locally common resident. Red List. This farmland species is now restricted to just the south-east and west of the county; again there were no reports from the north-east. Overall, records show this species' numbers continuing to drop within the county with very few records from the previous stronghold on the Shotley Peninsular. There were records from 25 sites (35 in 2011 ) of which four sites (six in 2011) had counts of more than ten as follows:Shingle Street: 12, Jan Ist. Great Waldingfield: Airfield, 15, Mar 19th; 12, Dec 9th.

Lakenheath: Botany Bay, 30, Jan 7th; Fen, 17, Jan 7th; 36, Jan lOth.


Systematic List

APPENDIX I - CATEGORY D SPECIES Species that would otherwise appear in Categories A or B except that there is reasonable doubt that they have ever occurred in Britain in a natural state. No species were reported within this category other than proven escapees.

APPENDIX II - CATEGORY E SPECIES Species that have been recorded as introductions, transportĂŠes or escapees from captivity, and whose breeding populations (if any) are thought not to be self-sustaining. Where a species is also placed in other categories of the British List, this is indicated in the species' summary. BLACK SWAN Cygnus atratus Throughout Australia and Tasmania. Category E. Shipmeadow: Jan 12th; Jan 22nd; two, Jan 17th. Lowestoft: North Beach, flew south, July 24th. WHOOPER SWAN Cygnus cygnus Boreal region from Iceland to E Siberia, Categories A and E Flixton: Gravel Pits, May 4th. SWAN GOOSE Anser cygnoides Northeast Asia, winters central China. Category E. Weybread: Gravel Pits, Jan 1st to Dec 31st. Parham: Jan 7th; Jan 22nd; Feb 11th; Mar 10th; Mar 28th; June 17th; Oct 7th; Nov 19th; Dec 15th. WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE Anser albifrons Breeds western Greenland, arctic Russia, Alaska and arctic Canada. European populations winter Britain and Netherlands to France. Categories A and E. Weybread: Gravel Pits, Mar 23rd; intermittently, Apr 5th to 24th. LESSER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE



Forest bogs of northern Scandinavia east to eastern Siberia. Winters locally from the Netherlands to eastern China. Categories A and E. Bungay: Outney Common, Feb 12th. Minsmere: Mar 10th.

BAR-HEADED GOOSE Anser indicus Breeds by lakes in central Asia from Mongolia to the Tibetan plateau. Winters throughout the Indian subcontinent and Myanmar (Burma) Category E. Minsmere: May 5th.

Farnham: Botany Farm, Mar 11th. Boyton: Boyton Marshes RSPB, June 14th; June 26th. Felixstowe: King's Fleet, Mar 13th. Freston: May 6th.

Stoke-by-Nayland: Thorington Street reservoir, Jan 6th. Lakenheath: Lakenheath Fen RSPB, Apr 27th. SNOW GOOSE Chen caerulescens Breeds on tundra of northeast Siberia, Alaska and Canada to NW Greenland. Winters from California to Texas and locally on Atlantic seaboard of eastern USA. Categories A, C and E. Pakenham: Mickle Mere, present throughout the year. 151

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Great Barton: Barton Mere, July 25th; Sep 20th. Livermere Lake: May 6th; July 9th; Oct 6th.

EMPEROR GOOSE Chen canagica Breeds northeast Siberia and western Alaska. Winters from southern Alaska to northern California. Category E. Lackford: SWT, Mar 14th; April; May; Oct 16th; December - present intermittently since Mar 27th 1997. RED-BREASTED GOOSE Branta ruficollis Breeds Taimyr Peninsula in arctic Siberia. The majority winter on western shores of Black Sea in Bulgaria and Romania, with small numbers annual in the Netherlands. Categories A and E. Benacre: two, Sep 12th; three, Sep 18th to 20th. Southwold: Feb 11th; four, Feb 16th. Minsmere: four, Feb 11th and 12th; three Feb 14th; three, Sep 25th to Oct 11th; Oct 23rd; Dec 13th. Aldeburgh: North Warren RSPB, three, intermittently, Oct 12th to Dec 24th; four, Dec 28th to 31st. Orfordness: June 24th. Hollesley: RSPB, Dec 27th to 31st. Landguard: south, June 26th. In the second winter period the three returning adults spent much of their time at North Warren RSPB. On December 28th they were joined by a first-winter bird and these four birds were present at North Warren on and off until January 14th 2013. The three adults were presumably a part of the group of two adults and three first-winter birds that arrived at Minsmere in September 2010, then returned as four adults in winter 2011/12, while the first-winter bird must be a new arrival. In addition, yet another first-winter bird arrived at Hollesley Marshes RSPB on December 27th where it associated with White-fronted Geese until the end of the year, then moved to North Warren on January 4th 2013. The movements of these birds and others will be discussed in the next report when all records from winter 2012/13 have been received and reviewed. RUDDY SHELDUCK Tadorna ferruginea Morocco and Turkey east through Central Asia to Tibetan plateau. Winters to south of breeding range, with majority in Indian subcontinent. Feral population breeds in northern Europe. Categories B and E. Weybread: Gravel Pits, Feb 3rd to 12th. Breydon South Wall: May 24th; three, Sep 30th. Burgh Castle: June 7th; Sep 24th to 27th; Oct 1st. Bradwell: Jan 1st to 28th. Belton: Belton Marshes, Jan 16th; Jan 28th; Feb 5th, considered same as Bradwell bird. Barsham: Oct 9th. Blythburgh: Oct 10th.

Minsmere: three, Aug 22nd. Havergate Island: six, July 23rd. CAPE SHELDUCK Tadorna tana Breeds in southern Africa. Category E. Lowestoft: Oulton Broad, intermittently, June 16th to July 29th. Minsmere: intermittently, July 26th to Sep 5th, presumed same as Lowestoft bird. AUSTRALIAN SHELDUCK Tadorna tadornoides Breeds throughout eastern Australia and Tasmania. Category E. Landguard: south, Nov 27th.




MUSCOVY DUCK Cairina moschata Southern Mexico to northern Argentina and Brazil. Category E. Beccles: Quay, three, Mar 16th; five, May 16th; eleven, June 4th. Purdis Farm: Ipswich Golf Club, Mar 1 st to Apr 14th; Nov 30th. WOOD DUCK



Canada to northern Mexico, Cuba and Bahamas. Category E. Lowestoft: Oulton Broad, male, intermittently, Jan 18th to 22nd; Feb 3rd to 26th; Mar 17th; Apr 6th; July 3rd; Oct 3rd to Dec 21st; Leathes Ham, male. Mar 10th to May 6th; June 4th; Dec 25th. PINTAIL Anas acuta Breeds northern Europe, Asia and North America. Flixton: Gravel Pits, pair, Jan 1 st to Dec 31 st, nested and raised three young. WHITE-CHEEKED PINTAIL Anas bahamensis West Indies, and south to southern Brazil, Argentina, Chile and the Galapagos Category E. Weybread: Gravel Pits, two, Jan 2nd.


Minsmere: Mar 10th.

RED-CRESTED POCHARD Netta rufwa Breeds western Europe to central China. Winters to south of breeding range. Categories A, C and E. Beccles: Feb 3rd.

FERRUGINOUS DUCK Aythya nyroca Breeds southern Spain, and from eastern Europe to Caspian Sea, and east through Kazakhstan and western Mongolia to Tibetan Plateau. Winters eastern Mediterranean, Black and Caspian Seas, northeast Africa & Indian subcontinent. Categories A and E. Flixton: Gravel Pits, Feb 7th; two, Feb 11th. REEVE'S PHEASANT Syrmaticus Forests of central China. Category E.


Westleton: two, Jan 18th. Livermere Lake: Apr 19th; two, Apr 29th. Wickhambrook: May 19th.

Stanton: Wyken Hall, two. Mar 9th. HELMETED GUINEAFOWL Aumida meleagris Sub-Saharan Africa. Category E. Lackford: West Stow Heath, The King's Forest, Mar 26th. SACRED IBIS Threskiornis aethiopicus Breeds sub-Saharan Africa. Large feral breeding population source of British records. Aldeburgh: Slaughden, Nov 11th.

in western France may be

Shingle Street: Nov 12th. Bawdsey: Nov 12th.

A Sacred Ibis frequented several sites along the north Norfolk coast from September 18th to the end of the year, and the Suffolk sightings may refer to this individual, which was not reported from its Norfolk haunts on the dates in Suffolk shown above. GREATER FLAMINGO Phoenicopterus roseus Breeds locally in Spain, France and Sardinia, east to northern India, and south throughout 153

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 much of Africa. Small feral population breeding in northern Germany where occasionally hybridising with Chilean Flamingo P. chilensis. Categories D and E. Minsmere: bird with blue colour ring, Jan 24th to 26th; Feb 1st to 11th and Apr 8th to 26th. This bird is a known escapee from Marwell Zoo, Hampshire, affectionately known as Fiona, that has wandered widely, being seen at Welney and the Ouse Washes in February and March 2011 and Titchwell (all Norfolk) in early April 2011 before arriving in Suffolk in April 2011. It was seen regularly at various coastal sites since that date (see SBR 2011 for report of details of movements). Boyton: Boyton Marshes RSPB, bird with blue colour ring, present intermittently from early January to Apr 3rd. Aldeburgh: Slaughden, Feb 5th, presumed same as at Boyton and Minsmere. LANNER FALCON Falco biarmicus Largely resident in arid regions of the southern Palearctic and throughout much of Africa. In Europe, breeds in Italy and the Balkans, but more widespread in north Africa from Morocco, south to Mauritania and east to southern Iraq. Category E Breydon South Wall: Apr 11th; Apr 22nd. Ampton: Feb 5th.

LANNER/SAKER HYBRID FALCON Falco biarmicus x cherrug Lackford: SWT, either Saker or hybrid, Janl2th, presumed same as at Berners Heath. Icklingham: Berner's Heath, either Saker or hybrid, JanlOth and 11th. Landguard: Sep 9th; another, possibly a hybrid, Oct 16th. RED-TAILED HAWK


Widespread throughout temperate North America south to Costa Rica and West Indies. Category E. Thetford Forest: the long-staying individual was still present in February. HARRIS'S HAWK Parabuteo unicinctus Southwest USA south through Central and South America to southern Argentina and Chile. Category E. Ipswich: Holywells Park, Jan 7th. LAUGHING DOVE Streptopelia senegalensis Widespread from southern Morocco and throughout north African tropics from Senegal to Sudan, Arabian peninsula, Turkey to Central Asia and Indian subcontinent to Bangladesh. Spreading westwards. Ipswich: Apr 21st; Apr 24th. PEACH-FACED LOVEBIRD Agapornis roseicollis Angola to Namibia and northwest Cape Province, South Africa. Gorleston: Cobholm Common, Aug 15th. AFRICAN GREY PARROT



Breeds throughout equatorial Africa from Guinea and Sierra Leone east to Kenya and Tanzania. Category E. Breydon South Wall: flew north, Aug 20th. BUDGERIGAR Melopsittacus undulatus Drier regions of Australia. Category E. Lowestoft: Sparrows Nest and North Denes, Apr 11th. COCKATIEL Nymphicus hollandicus Widespread throughout interior Australia. Category E. 154

Systematic List Lowestoft: Mar 23rd; Aug 30th.

ROSE-RINGED PARAKEET Psittacula krameri Widespread throughout northern tropics from Senegal to southern China and south to Sri Lanka. Lakenheath Fen: Feb 27th, blue form believed to be ex-captive. EURASIAN EAGLE OWL Bubo bubo Widespread throughout Europe and Asia Ampton: Feb 12th, calling at night, not seen. ISLAND CANARY Serinus canaria Resident on Madeira, Azores and western Canary Islands. Category E. Landguard: June 14th.


Suffolk Bird Report 2012

List of Contributors Whilst every effort has been made to make this list as comprehensive as possible, some observers names may have been inadvertently omitted. If your contribution has not been acknowledged, please accept my sincere apologies. It is doubtful that ail those who only submit to Birdtrack will feature here. S & B Abbott, M D Abdulla, D H Adams, D Adelson, P Aldous, K Alexander, P R Allard, L Allen, B J Andrew, N Andrews, I Archer, R Attenborrow, D Austin, I Axelsson, C G Ayers. S Babbs, D Backhouse, C Baines, S R Baillie, D E Balmer, M F M Bamford, N Banham, P J Barker, C D Barley, I Barthorpe, B Baston, G Batchelor, A Batley, S Batty, D R Beamish, G Bennett, M Berry, R Berry, M Biddle, R Biddle, S Biddle, BINS, Birdline East Anglia, Birdguides, S Bishop, D Borderick, G Bowman, W J Brame, R Brockman, M Broughton, J Brown, E Bruce, BTO Thetford, M Buckingham, B Buffery, P J Burston, T Butler, C A Buttle. N Calbrade, N Cant,M Cantrell, D Carr, M Carr, C Carter, D & M Carter, N Carter, M T Cartwright, B Castell, 1 Castle, P Catchpole, M Cavanagh, D Cawdron, A Chaplin, C Chapman, R Chittenden (Birdline East Anglia),N A and J A Clark, F C Clark, J Clarke, B Coates, J Coleman, P Colman, R Coombes, M L Cornish, D H Cotton, T Cowan, C Courtney, J Crapnell, D Craven, D Crawshaw, N Crouch, M Crowley. G D Daniels, C Darby, P J Dare, J Davidson, G Davies, .1 Davies, T Davies, S Dean, M Deans, R Diaper, J P Dickie, D Dow, A Drake, R Drew, R Duncan, J Durrant. A C Easton, D Eaton, E Ellis, C Elmer, P Etheridge, R Etheridge, J Evans, L G R Evans, M Evans, S Evans, P Ewart, A Excell. I Fair, R Fairhead, D Fairhurst, M FairleyJ Ferguson, M Forbes, Forest Enterprise, B Fountain, S Free, S Fryett, C Fulcher, D Fuller. P Gallagher, D Gaplin, J Garbutt, J Gaskall, M Garnham, J Gibbs, C Gill, Gipping Valley Birders, J Glazebrook, S Goddard, M Gooch, R Gooderham, A Gooding, S Gough, P Gowen, S Graham, J H Grant, I Gray, A Green, P D Green, A M Gregory, C Gregory, L Gregory, A Gretton, G Grieco, R D Gross. J M Halls, I Hambleton, B Harrington, R G Harris, B and M Hart, P Harrop, R Harvey, G Hawes, K Herrington, R Hicks, J Higgott, K Hill, P Hobbs, R Hoblyn, S Hodge, T Hodge, J Hogg, A Holden, C Holden, P J Holmes, P Holness, W D Hopkins, S Horwell, A Howe, S V Howell, C Hullis, T J Humpage. R Ingleston. R Jackson, C Jacobs, C J Jakes, S Jarrett, K M Jarvis, S Jarvis, P Jesperson, G J Jobson, R Johnson, B Jones, S Jones. D Kell, M Kemp, P Kennerley, J Kennerley, T Kerridge, A Kettle, D B Kightley, C A Kirtland, B Knibbs, A Knowles, J Kornjaca. P C Lack, Lackford Lakes Log, Lackford Ringing Group, Landguard Bird Observatory, D Langlois, Lavenham Bird Club, A Lees, J Levene, M D Linsley, N Lloyd, C Lodge, 156

List of Contributors N Loth, Lowestoft Lounge Lizards, E Lucking. C G Mclntyre, H Maclean, P R Maddison, J March, J H Marchant, D Marsh, E Marsh, J E Mason, M Marsh, N Marsh, R Marsh, J P Martin, C Mason, N J Mason, R Mason, J M Maskell, S Mayson, G McLatchie, S McLaney, M C Meadows, S Menzie, Mickle Mere Log, A Miller, M Miller, Minsmere RSPB, G Moates, D Mobley, D Moore, N J Moran, M Morely, J Mountain, C Mummery, C Mutimer, P W Murphy, A Musgrove, M Muttit. P Napthine, National Trust Orfordness, Natural England, A Needle, M Nevison, P Newton. P Nixon, S Nixon, R Noble, S Noble, North Warren RSPB, M Nowers. N Odin, M Offord, P Oldfield, Orfordness Report, J Owen. M Packard, R Parfitt, P Parker, E Patrick, D J Pearson, P Pearson, D Pearsons, M F Peers, G Pentelow, E I Peters, S Piotrowski, R E Platt, R Plowman, S Plume, D Porter. C R Powell, M P Pratt. A Rafinski, J Rankin, P J Ransome, A Rayner, P Read, S Read, G Reeder, M Riley, R Rolph, D Rothery, J A Rowlands, P Rowe, RSPB Lakenheath, R D Ruffell, C Ruffles. I Salkeld, T Seagon, P Shaw, D Sheppard, N Sherman, N Sillett, N Sills, D Sivyer, N Skinner, O Slessor, B J Small, K Smith, P Smith, R Snook, N Spicer, I A Stachnicki, R Stewart, W Stone, T Stopher, B Stuckey, R G Stewart, Suffolk Wildlife Trust, M Swindells. D Tansley, P Taylor, B Thompson, M J Thompson, D Thurlow, D Tomlinson, R F Tomlinson, L Townsend, J Trew, C N Tricker, Trimley Marshes SWT, C Trollope, S Tusa. D K Underwood, J Underwood. L Valentine, P Vincent, N Vipond, R Vonk. J Waldron, R Waiden, D F Walsh, G D J Walsh, J Walsh, J Walshe, J D Warnes, S Waters, G Webb, L H Weeks, R West, I Whitaker, D White, G White, P Whittaker, B Wijnberg, B Williamson, P Wilson, R Wilton, R Wincup, T Wood, D G Woodard, B Woodhouse, L G Woods, N Wragg, M T Wright, R M Wright. S Young. J Zantboer.

Suffolk Bird Report 2012

Gazetteer This gazetteer gives locations for sites listed in the main checklist section of this issue of Suffolk Birds. The intention is to make it easier for newcomers to birdwatching, or those less familiar with the county, to be able to locate sites. Specific sites are given a six-figure reference where appropriate; larger sites are given a four-figure reference for the 1 km square in which they are situated. Whilst a complete list of all sites would obviously be of most use, it would of necessity, be very long. Therefore, it does not, in general, contain parish names, which are easily located by reference to a standard road map.

Aldeburgh Town Marshes Aide Estuary Aldringham Common Aldringham Walks Alton Water Ampton Water Barham Pits Barnhamcross Common Barsham Marshes Barton Mere Belle Vue Gardens, Lowestoft Benacre Broad Benacre Pits Bentley Berner's Heath Blundeston Marshes Blyth Estuary Botany Bay Bowbeck Boxford Boyton Marshes Brackenbury Cliff, Felixstowe Brent Eleigh Breydon Water Bromeswell Carlton Marshes Campsea Ashe Castle Marshes Cattawade Marshes Cavenham Heath Cavenham Pits Christchurch Park, Ipswich Cobbold's Point Combs Lane Water Meadows Cornard Mere Corton railway line Corton sewage works Cosford Hall, Hadleigh Cove Bottom Covehithe Broad Deben Estuary Dingle Marshes Dunwich Heath

TM450560 TM3957-4450 TM458606 TM4661 TM1436 TL8770 TM1251 TL8681 TM4090 TL910668 TM550944 TM530828 TM535842 TM120385 TL7976 TM5095 TM4575-4776 TL675854 TL9475 TL9640 TM3946 TM322360 TL943480 TM4706-5107 TM3050 TM4991 TM3256 TM475915 TM0932 TL755725 TL763715 TM164454 TM315349 TM043581 TL887391 TM537579 TM539982 TMO13446 TM4979 TM524808 TM2850-3238 TM4872 TM4768

Eastbridge East Lane, Bawdsey Easton Broad Elveden Erwarton Bay Euston Lake/Park Fagbury Cliff Falkenham Marshes Felixstowe Ferry Fisher Row Flixton GP Foxhole Heath Fressingfield Fritton Decoy/Lake Frostenden Gedgrave Marshes Gifford's Hall Gipping Great Wood Glemsford Groton Gunton Warren Hardwick Heath Hare's Creek, Shotley Haughley Park Havergate Island Hazelwood Marshes Hengrave Hall Hen Reedbeds Herringfleet Marshes Herringswell Hinderclay Fen Holbrook Bay Holywells Park, Ipswich Homersfield Gravel Pits Icklingham Plains Ilketshall St Lawrence Ipswich Golf Course Ipswich Wet Dock Kedington Kentwell Hall, Long Melford Kessingland Levels Kessingland sewage works King's Fleet 158

TM452660 TM354401 TM518794 TL8279 TM2333 TL9079 TM270346 TM3138 TM3237 TM507927 TM3187 TL735776 TM260775 TM4800 TM4781 TM410480 TM0137 TM075625 TL8348 TL9642 TM5495 TL854625 TM244360 TM000620 TM4147 TM435573 TL824686 TM470770 TM468977 TL7169 TM025788 TM1733 TM 175435 TM287855 TL7573 TM3883 TM207433 TM 169439 TL7046 TL863479 TM530850 TM533857 TM310379

Gazetteer King's Forest, The Kirton Creek Knettishall Heath Lackford Lakes Lake Lothing Lakenheath Fen Lakenheath Warren Lakenheath Washes Landguard Lavenham railway walk Layham pits Leathes Ham Leiston Abbey Levington Creek Levington Marina Lineage Wood, Lavenham Livermere Lake Long Melford churchyard Long Melford sewage works Loompit Lake Lound Waterworks Lowestoft Harbour Market Weston Fen Martlesham Creek Mayday Farm Mickle Mere Middleton Minsmere Minsmere Levels Mutford Needham Market Lake Ness Point North Denes, Lowestoft Northfield Wood North Warren Nowton Park Nunnery Lakes Old Newton Olley's Farm Orfordness Orwell Bridge Orwell Estuary Outney Common, Bungay Oulton Broad Oxley Marshes Pakefield Beach Pakenham Fen Peewit Hill Pipps Ford Potter's Bridge Puttockshill Ramsey Wood Ramsholt Marshes Redgrave and Lopham Fen Redgrave Lake Reydon Marshes

TL8173 TM292417 TL952804 TL800710 TM5392 TL7085 TL7580 TL7085 TM2831 TL9049 TM021402 TM530933 TM444643 TM237383 TM246380 TM890485 TL882716 TL868468 TL855459 TM255377 TG501007 TM5592 TL980787 TM2647 TL7983 TL937699 TM4267 TM4766 TM4667 TM4988 TM094548 TM555936 TM551951 TM024600 TM4658 TL866615 TL872815 TM0562 TL824815 TM4654-3743 TM175413 TM1641-2534 TM3290 TM5192 TM370435 TM5389 TL930680 TM289338 TM 108538 TM509791 TL898695 TM065430 TM298423 TM046797 TM055767 TM485766

Santon Downham Sedge Fen, Lakenheath Shelley Shingle Street Shotley Marshes Shottisham Creek Sizewell Beach Slaughden Sole Bay Sotterley Park Southwold Boating Lake Southwold Town Marshes Spinny Marsh Staverton Thicks Stern field Stonham Aspal Stour Estuary Stradishall Airfield Stratton Hall Stutton Mill Sudbourne Marshes Suffolk Water Park Sutton Common Sutton Heath Tangham Temple Bridge, Cavenham Theberton Grange Thetford Heath Thorington Street Reservoir Thorpeness Common Thorpeness Meare Tinker's Marshes Trimley Marshes Trinity Hall Farm, Moulton Tuddenham Heath Tuddenham St Martin Ufford Undley Upper Abbey Farm, Leiston Walberswick NNR Waldingfield airfield Waldringfield Pit Walpole Wangford Warren Westleton Heath West Stow Country Park Westwood Lodge Westwood Marshes Wetherden Weybread GPs Wherstead Strand Wilford Bridge Wolves Wood Wordwell Workhouse Green


TL818878 TL6784 TM0338 TM365425 TM248350 TM3043 TM4763 TM464555 TM5177 TM460850 TM510769 TM500754 TM292428 TM3650 TM3961 TM1359 TM 1032-2433 TL7452 TM254388 TM 133330 TM4553 TM 120485 TM3247 TM308478 TM355485 TL758728 TM438652 TL845800 TM012352 TM475604 TM4659 TM484760 TM2635 TL693651 TL7472 TM 1948 TM300525 TL6981 TM453646 TM4674 TL8943 TM274438 TM3674 TL758842 TM4569 TL800713 TM465737 TM4773 TM0062 TM2481 TM 173408 TM29150I TM055440 TL828720 TL9037

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012








Mar 15th


Oct 14 th

Osprey Hobby Stone-curlew* Little (Ringed) Piover Whimbrel Wood Sandpiper Little Tern Black Tern Sandwich Tern

Mar 10th Apr 20th Mar 8th Mar 2 Ist Apr 2nd May 5th Apr 17th Apr 25th Jan 23rd

Upper Hollesley Common Oct 13 th Lakenheath Fen Oct 25th Lackford Nov 10th Cavenham Sep 10th Thorpeness Oct 1st Minsmere Sep 6th Felixstowe Sep 24th Weybread Sep 23rd Slaughden Oct 14th

Common Tern Arctic Tern Turtle Dove Cuckoo Nightjar

Apr 9th Apr 17th Apr 8th Mar 28th May 11th

Minsmere Livermere Pipps Ford Shotley Gate Snape Warren

Oct 12th Oct 7th Oct 13th Sep 19th Sep 15th

Swift Wryneck Sand Martin Swallow House Martin Wood Warbler Willow Warbler Garden Warbler Lesser Whitethroat Common Whitethroat Grasshopper Warbler Sedge Warbler Reed Warbler Ring Ouzel Spotted Flycatcher Nightingale Redstart Whinchat

Apr 20th Apr 25th Mar 16th Mar 21st Mar 3rd May 8th Mar 18th Mar 30th Apr 10th Apr 4th Apr 11th Mar 29th Apr 8th Apr 11th Apr 24th Apr 3rd Apr 11th Apr 29th

Oct 4th Sep 15th Oct 15 th Nov 28th Nov 22nd Aug 11th Oct 24th Sep 29th Nov 5th Oct 9th Sep 7th Sep 22nd Oct 22nd Nov 2nd Oct 4th Aug 28th Oct 25th Oct 26th


Mar 16th

Nov 3rd


Pied Flycatcher Yellow Wagtail Tree Pipit

Apr 29th Apr 6th Apr 6th

Ipswich Boyton Lackford Minsmere Lackford Hollesley Santon Downham Gazeley Melton Flatford Lackford Hen Reedbeds Lakenheath Fen Benacre Landguard Alton Water Minsmere Lowestoft/Orfordness/ Landguard Benacre/Minsmere/ Thorpeness/Landguard Landguard Orfordness Benacre

Martlesham Creek Minsmere Minsmere Lackford Minsmere Stutton Minsmere Landguard South wold Thorpeness/River Deben Thorpeness Thorpeness Bawdsey Landguard Upper Hollesley Common Gorleston Pakefield Gunton Upper Holton St Olaves Minsmere Landguard Landguard Corton Landguard Dingle Hills Minsmere Sizewell Pakefield Minsmere Landguard Lowestoft Woodbridge

Oct 29th Oct 11th Oct 23rd

Landguard Minsmere Walberswick

* New arrivals not overwintering birds


รฌO. Skylark stili singing in the skies ibove some areas. uz Cutting

31. Bearded Reedling handsome male showing well. UzCutting

32. Great Grey Shrike at Lower Layham from January to March.



ยก4. Tree Sparrow one from the Ampton stronghold'. Barry Woodhouse

36. Tawny Pipit at Landguard in May. Chris Mayne

35. Spanish Sparrow first for Suffolk at Landguard in August. John Richardson

37. Olive-backed Pipit at Corton in O c t o b e r .

Ian Clarke

38. Hornemann's Arctic Redpoll delighting the crowds at Aldeburgh in December. Chris Mayn

A Guide to Recording Birds in Suffolk


The foundation stone of any report is the data upon which it is based. Unless we ail submit our records diligently, and in a usable form, then the Suffolk Bird Report will not be a comprehensive account of the birds recorded in Suffolk. The system

The recording of the county's avifauna is the responsibility of the Suffolk Naturalists' Society, working in close co-operation with the Suffolk Ornithologists' Group. The linchpins of the system are the Recorders, who are the initial point of contact for all records. Because of the volume of records in Suffolk the county has been divided into three areas. See the inside front cover for a map and addresses. Observers are reminded that Suffolk works to Watsonian vice-county boundaries, taking in areas that are now administered as Norfolk, Cambridgeshire or Essex. The most significant area affected is that of Lothingland, the northern limits of which follow the River Yare and include the south side of Breydon Water. We have retained these originai boundaries as we feel that sensible comparison of data can only be made from year to year if the recording area is kept constant. S u b m i s s i o n of records

All observers are requested to submit their records monthly. We also suggest that the following format be followed: (a) Location (precise place name from the Ordnance Survey map plus parish if ambiguous). OS grid reference should be added if in any doubt or if reporting breeding locations. (b) Species (c) Date (d) Name and address of observer (e) Sex/age - male, female, juvenile etc. (f) Abundance - count numbers, frequency, etc. (g) Type of record - dead, ringed, etc. (h) Other comments considered relevant - behaviour etc. In particular see the list below for particular information required for each species. Ail claims of national rarities should, of course, be accompanied by a full description. The Recorder will automatically forward this to the British Birds Rarities Committee (BBRC). If submitting a list of records for one particular site, please put ail détails at the top of the list and annotate with sex and/or frequency. Remember, if in any doubt as to the value of any record, please send it in! A spreadsheet is available for submitting records and can be downloaded from the SOG website. This can be sent electronically to the Recorders and is a much easier and quicker method for them. Whilst this is not essential, we would encourage ail those who can to use this method of submitting their records. A s s e s s m e n t of records

Ail records come under the scrutiny of the Suffolk Ornithological Records Committee (SORC) and for rare or scarce species, vérification is sought - i.e. photographs, field Sketches, witnesses, sound recordings (for calling or singing birds) and (most importantly) written descriptions. The SORC's policy for vagrants, classified as national rarities, is clear; records should be channelled through the County Recorder to be considered by the British Birds Rarities Committee (BBRC), whose décisions are accepted by SORC. A full list of species that are considered by the SORC follows. The committee may also request further détails regarding any other species that, in the opinion of the committee, is out of context in 161

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 terms of season, habitat or numbers. A list of records which have not been accepted for publication can be found in Appendix III and includes those which have been circulated to the respective committees but were considered unacceptable due to either the identification not being fully established or, more rarely, a genuine mistake having been made. It does not include records still under considération. Guide to species The following list shows all the species recorded in the county and thus this is also a checklist for Suffolk. For any species not listed, a full description will be required. The list shows those species accepted into Catégories A, B and C, as per the British Ornithologists' Union (see the Introduction to the Systematic List for more détails). Note that a large number of species included can also fall into Catégories D and E (basically as escapees); a description of such a bird may be requested but will be essential if it is believed that the bird is of wild origin. A reminder that Turtle Dove, Yellow Wagtail, Nightingale, Spotted Flycatcher, Marsh Tit and Corn Bunting have ali been moved from Category 4 to category 3 - records of ali of them would be appreciated. Mediterranean Gull has been moved from 2 to 3, so descriptions will no longer be necessary. SOG/SORC would also like to receive any breeding records for the following species: Kestrel, Ringed Piover, Lapwing, Common Snipe, Curlew, Redshank, Common Gull, Great Black-backed Gull, Common Swift, Sand and House Martin (colonies), Mistle Thrush, Willow Warbler and Reed Bunting. Spanish Sparrow has been added to the Suffolk list in 2012. Mute Swan Tundra (Bewick's) Swan Whooper Swan Bean Goose Tundra Taiga Pink-footed Goose Greater White-fronted Goose Greylag Goose Snow Goose Greater Canada Goose Barnacle Goose Brent Goose Dark-bellied Pale-bellied Black Brant Red-breasted Goose Egyptian Goose Ruddy Shelduck * Common Shelduck Mandarin Duck Eurasian Wigeon American Wigeon Gadwall Baikal Teal Eurasian Teal Green-winged Teal Mallard Northern Pintail Garganey Blue-winged Teal Northern Shoveler

4 3 3 3 2 3 3 4 1 4 3 4 3 2 1 3 1 4 4 4 2 4 1 4 2 4 4 3 1 4

Red-crested Pochard Common Pochard Ring-necked Duck Ferruginous Duck Tufted Duck Greater Scaup Lesser Scaup Common Eider King Eider Long-tailed Duck Common Scoter Velvet Scoter Bufflehead Common Goldeneye Smew Red-breasted Merganser Goosander Ruddy Duck Red-legged Partridge Grey Partridge Common Quail Common Pheasant Golden Pheasant Red-throated Diver Black-throated Diver Great Northern Diver White-billed Diver Northern Fulmar Cory's Shearwater Great Shearwater Sooty Shearwater Manx Shearwater 162

3 3 2 2 4 3 1 3 1 3 3 3 1 4 3 3 3 3 4 3 3 4 3 3 3 3 1 4 2 2 3 3

Balearic Shearwater European Storm-petrel Leach's Storm-petrel Northern Gannet Great Cormorant European Shag Great Bittern Little Bittern Black-crowned Night-heron Squacco Heron Cattle Egret Little Egret Great Egret Grey Heron Purple Heron Black Stork White Stork Glossy Ibis Eurasian Spoonbill Little Grebe Great Crested Grebe Red-necked Grebe Slavonian Grebe Black-necked Grebe European Honey-buzzard Black Kite Red Kite White-tailed Eagle Eurasian Marsh Harrier Hen Harrier Pallid Harrier Mor.tagu's Harrier

2 2 3 3 4 3 3 1 2 1 2 3 3 4 2 1 2 1 3 4 4 3 3 3 2 2 3 2 3 3 1 2

A Guide to Recording Birds in Suffolk Northern Goshawk Eurasian Sparrowhawk Common Buzzard Rough-legged Buzzard Greater Spotted Eagle Osprey Lesser Kestrel Common Kestrel Red-footed Falcon Merlin Eurasian Hobby Eleonora's Falcon Gyr Falcon Peregrine Falcon Water Rail Spotted Crake Little Crake Baillons Crake* Corncrake Common Moorhen Allen's Gallinule* Common Coot Common Crane Sandhill Crane Little Bustard Macqueen's Bustard Great Bustard Eurasian Oystercatcher Black-winged Stilt Pied Avocet Stone-curlew Cream-coloured Courser* Collared Pratincole Oriental Pratincole Black-winged Pratincole Little Ringed Plover Ringed Plover Killdeer Kentish Plover Greater Sand Plover Eurasian Dotterel American Golden Plover Pacific Golden Plover European Golden Plover Grey Plover Sociable Lapwing Northern Lapwing Red Knot Sanderling Semipalmated Sandpiper Little Stint Temminck's Stint White-rumped Sandpiper Baird's Sandpiper Pectoral Sandpiper Curlew Sandpiper Stilt Sandpiper Purple Sandpiper Dunlin Broad-billed Sandpiper Buff-breasted Sandpiper

2 3 3 2 1 3 1 4 2 3 3 1 1 3 3 2 1 1 2 4 1 4 3 1 1 1 1 4 1 3 3 1 1 1 1 3 4 1 2 1 2 2 1 4 4 1 4 4 3 1 3 3 2 1 3 3 1 3 4 1 2

Ruff Jack Snipe Common Snipe Great Snipe Long-billed Dowitcher Eurasian Woodcock Black-tailed Godwit Bar-tailed Godwit Whimbrel Eurasian Curlew Terek Sandpiper Common Sandpiper Spotted Sandpiper Green Sandpiper Spotted Redshank Greater Yellowlegs Common Greenshank Lesser Yellowlegs Marsh Sandpiper Wood Sandpiper Common Redshank Ruddy Turnstone Wilson's Phalarope Red-necked Phalarope Grey Phalarope Pomarine Skua Arctic Skua Long-tailed Skua Great Skua Ivory Gull Sabine's Gull Kittiwake Slender-billed Gull Black-headed Gull Little Gull Ross's Gull Laughing Gull Franklin's Gull Mediterranean Gull Audouin's Gull Common Gull Ring-billed Gull Lesser Black-backed Gull Herring Gull Yellow-legged Gull Caspian Gull Iceland Gull Glaucous Gull Great Black-backed Gull Sooty Tern Little Tern Gull-billed Tern Caspian Tern Whiskered Tern Black Tern White-winged Black Tern Sandwich Tern Lesser Crested Tern Common Tern Roseate Tern Arctic Tern 163

3 3 4 1 1 3 4 3 4 4 1 3 1 3 3 1 3 1 1 3 4 4 1 2 3 3 3 3 3 1 2 4 1 4 3 1 1 1 3 1 4 2 4 4 3 3 3 3 4 1 4 1 1 1 3 2 4 1 4 3 3

Common Guillemot Razorbill Black Guillemot Little Auk Atlantic Puffin Pallas's Sandgrouse* Feral Pigeon Stock Pigeon Common Wood Pigeon Eurasian Collared Dove European Turtle Dove Oriental Turtle Dove Rose-ringed Parakeet Great Spotted Cuckoo Common Cuckoo Yellow-billed Cuckoo Barn Owl Eurasian Scops Owl* Snowy Owl Little Owl Tawny Owl Long-eared Owl Short-eared Owl Tengmalm's Owl* European Nightjar Common Swift Pallid Swift Alpine Swift Common Kingfisher European Bee-eater European Roller Hoopoe Eurasian Wryneck Green Woodpecker Great Spotted Woodpecker Lesser Spotted Woodpecker Red-eyed Vireo Eurasian Golden Oriole lsabelline Shrike Red-backed Shrike Lesser Grey Shrike Great Grey Shrike Southern Grey Shrike Woodchat Shrike Red-billed Chough* Black-billed Magpie Eurasian Jay Spotted Nutcracker Eurasian Jackdaw Rook Carrion Crow Hooded Crow Common Raven Goldcrest Firecrest Eurasian Penduline Tit Blue Tit Great Tit Crested Tit Coal Tit Willow Tit

3 3 2 3 3 1 4 4 4 4 3 1 3 1 3 1 3 1 1 3 3 3 3 1 3 4 1 2 3 2 1 3 3 4 4 3 1 3 1 3 1 3 1 2 2 4 4 1 4 4 4 2 2 4 3 1 4 4 2 4 2

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Marsh Tit Bearded Tit Greater Short-toed Lark Crested Lark Wood Lark Sky Lark Horned (Shore) Lark Sand Martin Barn Swallow House Martin Red-rumped Swallow Cetti's Warbier Long-tailedTit Greenish Warbier Arctic Warbier Pallas'Leaf Warbier Yellow-browed Warbier Hume's Leaf Warbier Radde's Warbier Dusky Warbier Western Bonelli's Warbier Wood Warbier Common Chiffchaff Siberian Chiffchaff Willow Warbier Blackcap Garden Warbier Barred Warbier Lesser Whitethroat Common Whitethroat Spectacled Warbier Dartford Warbier Marmora's Warbier Subalpine Warbier Sardinian Warbier Lanceolated Warbier Common Grasshopper Warbier River Warbier Savi's Warbier Olivaceous Warbier Booted Warbler Icterine Warbler Melodious Warbler Aquatic Warbler Sedge Warbler Paddyfield Warbler Blyth's Reed Warbler Marsh Warbler Eurasian Reed Warbler Great Reed Warbler Bohemian Waxwing

3 3 2 1 4 4 3 4 4 4 2 3 4 2 1 2 3 I 2 2 1 3 4 2 4 4 4 3 4 4 1 3 1 2 1 1 3 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 4 1 1 2 4 1 3

Wood Nuthatch Eurasian Treecreeper Short-toed Treecreeper Winter Wren Common Starling Rosy Starling White-throated Dipper White's Thrush Ring Ouzel Common Blackbird Fieldfare Song Thrush Redwing Mistle Thrush Spotted Flycatcher European Robin Thrush Nightingale Common Nightingale Bluethroat Siberian Blue Robin Red-flanked Bluetail Black Redstart Common Redstart Whinchat Stonechat Siberian Stonechat Isabelline Wheatear Northern Wheatear Pied Wheatear Desert Wheatear White-crowned Wheatear (White-tailed Wheatear) Red-breasted Flycatcher Collared Flycatcher Pied Flycatcher Hedge Accentor Alpine Accentor House Sparrow Spanish Sparrow Eurasian Tree Sparrow Yellow Wagtail Blue-headed Wagtail Grey-headed Wagtail Black-headed Wagtail Ashy-headed Wagtail Citrine Wagtail Grey Wagtail Pied Wagtail White Wagtail Richard's Pipit Blyth's Pipit Tawny Pipit

3 3 1 4 4 2 2 1 3 4 4 4 4 4 3 4 1 3 2 1 1 3 3 3 3 1 1 3 1 1 1 2 1 3 4 1 4 1 3 3 3 3 1 2 1 3 4 3 2 1 2

Olive-backed Pipit Tree Pipit Meadow Pipit Red-throated Pipit Rock Pipit Water Pipit ChafTinch Brambling European Serin European Greenfinch European Goldfinch Eurasian Siskin Common Linnet Twite Lesser Redpoll Common (Mealy) Redpoll Arctic Redpoll Two-barred Crossbill Common Crossbill Parrot Crossbill Trumpeter Finch Common Rosefinch Eurasian Bullfinch Hawfinch Snow Bunting Lapland Longspur Lark Sparrow White-throated Sparrow Pine Bunting Yellowhammer Ciri Bunting Ortolan Bunting Rustie Bunting Little Bunting Yellow-breasted Bunting Reed Bunting Black-headed Bunting Com Bunting

Marsh Tit Su Gough

* not recorded as wild since at least 1949 Key:

1 2 3 4

National Rarity - detailed description required. County Rarity - notes detailing observation will always be required. All records requested - supporting notes may be requested. Specific records - records of breeding, large counts, earliest/latest dates, unusual inland records or migration/weather-related movements requested. 164

1 3 4 2 3 3 4 3 2 4 4 4 4 3 3 3 2 1 3 1 1 2 3 3 3 3 1 1 1 4 2 2 2 2 1 4 1 3

Rare Birds in Suffolk 2012

Rare Birds in Suffolk 2012 David Walsh Accepted BBRC Records 2012 Red-breasted Goose Branla ruficollis: Felixstowe Ferry to Kirton Creek, adult, February 10th to March 9th (W J Brame et al.). Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus. Eastbridge and Minsmere, February 23rd to April 13th ( M Muttitt et al. per Suffolk Recorder); Burgh Castle, four, March 3rd (R Fairhead); North Warren, two, May 29th (D Thurlow); Minsmere, two, May 29th to June 14th, one, June 15th to July 15th (D Fairhurst et al.); Southwold, July 16th (J Mountain); Minsmere, August 13th (I Salkeld per Suffolk Recorder). Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus. Minsmere, pair, May 7th (D Fairhurst et al.). Long-billed Dowitcher Limnodromus scolopaceus: Livermere, May 4th to 6th (J Walshe, P Wilson et al.). Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia. Minsmere, adult, July 6th (J H Grant, P J Woolnough et al. ). Eurasian Penduline Tit Remit pendulinus. Minsmere, male and female, March 26th (L and M C Cantrell). Savi's Warbler Locustella luscinioides: Westwood Marsh, Walberswick, male in song, May 12th (B J Small). Spanish Sparrow Passer hispaniolensis; Landguard, male, August 24th to September 14th (P J Holmes, E Marsh, J Richardson et al.). Olive-backed Pipit Anthus hodgsonv. Corton, October 23rd to 25th (J Brown et al. per Suffolk Recorder). Arctic Redpoll Carduelis hornemanni: Greenland race, "Hornemann's Redpoll' C. h. hornemanni, Aldeburgh, first-winter, December 8th to 19th (C Barley, L G Woods et ai).

Accepted BBRC Records 2011 Black Stork Ciconia nigra: Lake Lothing, Lowestoft, April 4th (R Connor, A Easton, R Murray). Hume's Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus humei: Gunton and nearby, November 13th to 15th (A Easton, R Wilton, R Wincup et al.).

Accepted BBRC Records 2001 Marmora's Warbler Sylvia sarda: Sizewell, first-summer male in song. May 29th, note record now attributed to newly split species.

Accepted BBRC Records 1973 Caspian Tern Hydroprogne

caspia: Minsmere, adult, August 2nd (R D Goater et al. ).

Non-accepted records 2012 Eurasian Penduline Tit Remiz pendulinus-.

Minsmere, October 27th.

Non-accepted records 2011 Fea's Petrel Pterodroma feae. Lowestoft Ness, September 15th. Hume's Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus humei. Bawdsey, November 8th.


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012

Suffolk Ringing Report 2012 Simon Evans Following slight increases in the county's ringing totals over the past few years, what would the figure be for 2012? Would the upward trend continue as the significant increase in ringing of such species as Lesser Redpoll, Yellowhammer and Barn Owl might suggest? Would this trend be halted by the decline in ringing numbers for many of our warblers, hirundines and waders? Well, with a provisional figure of 60,201 birds ringed in the county in 2012, representing yet another rise, the highest total for the county was yet again broken. As in 2011, it placed us second to Sussex (68,766) and beating Norfolk in third (56,782). Suffolk's new record total represented 6.2% of the national total and with a further 1,748 recoveries, birds found dead or alive more than 5km from their original site of ringing, the county also contributed 9.4% of the national data. Within the recoveries, some 115 foreign-ringed birds were reported in Suffolk and 444 reports of Suffolk-ringed birds abroad were received. As has been the recent trend, the majority of these were of colour-ringed/marked birds being observed in the field. However, included within the recoveries is Suffolk's and Britain and Ireland's first Italian-ringed Sedge Warbler trapped twice in June at Culford School just north of Bury St. Edmunds. On a personal note, this bird represented my third ringing first for Britain and Ireland following a German-ringed Lesser Redpoll at Lackford in March 2010 and a Russian-ringed Brambling at Mildenhall Fen in January 1999. Who says it ali happens at the coast? Two new species made it onto the county ringing list in 2012. A Manx Shearwater and a Serin both ringed at Landguard Bird Observatory take the county-ringing species list to 224. Other scarcer species caught in the county's nets included two Wryneck and single Great Grey Shrike, Bluethroat, Greenish and Radde's Warblers and Common Rosefinch the pick of the bunch near the coast. See the recoveries data on the latter! Inland, the county's second Arctic Redpoll was caught at a private site near Santon Downham. Following a plea for help from Greene King to remove an owl from the main brewing hall in Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk's fourth Short-eared Owl to be ringed was duly trapped and released. The happy ringer being further thanked with a selection of ales from the shop for his troubles! Again sadly, Willow Tit and Lesser-spotted Woodpecker didn't make it onto the list. Looking at the top five species in terms of numbers ringed in Suffolk in 2012, Blue Tit, Blackbird and Great Tit were ali present, as they have been in recent years, coming in at first, third and fifth respectively. However, Reed Warbler followed Sedge Warbler from the previous year by dropping out of the top five. Blackcap also dropped out having made a new entry in 2011. New entrants in 2012 were Lesser Redpoll in at number two with 4273, more than double the 2011 total and Goldfinch at number four with its highest ever total of 3404. These two finches certainly seem to have benefited from our garden feeding habits and as such are relatively easily caught. A look at some of the recoveries for these birds just shows what kinds of movements they make and suggests why they are targeted by ringers. The county's specific studies certainly appear to be having an impact on the ringing numbers. The Suffolk Community Barn Owl Project (SCBOP) had a bumper year with 631 of these stunning birds ringed (591 pulii and 40 adults) as a direct result of their efforts. The Foraging Farmland Bird Project (FFBP), looking at some of our key farmland bird species, has no doubt contributed to the significant rise in the numbers of Linnets and Yellowhammers ringed. Similarly, re-trapping Adults for Survival (RAS) studies are becoming more popular with ringers, with more and more species being studied in detail. One particular study on Marsh Harriers is being expanded into our county and will hopefully reveal some interesting information on these birds in the future. The following table summarises the provisionai figures for 2012 as well as the amended totals for 2009, 2010 and 2011. The information presented here is largely a result of the 166

Suffolk Ringing Report 2012 ringers directly submitting their data electronically to the BTO. Figures for some of our scarcer breeding species have been kindly provided by those ringers directly concerned. Whilst it is possible to readily view much of this information via the BTO website, it is as such, incomplete. Only the available data can be included so if you're not credited here please get in touch. In acknowledgement, I'd like to particularly thank Lee Barber, Greg Conway and Rob Robinson at the BTO, Peter Catchpole, Colin Carter, Tim Cowan, David Fairhurst, Mike Marsh, Paul Newton, Nigel Odin, John Walshe and Mick Wright for their comments and input. In addition, the following ringers and groups are known to have been active in the county in 2012:- Abbott and Kennerley (Steve Abbott, Peter and James Kennerley and Mike Swindells), RE Batty, Colin Carter and The Kessingland Ringing Group, Catchpole, Cockram and Peters (Peter Catchpole, John Glazebrook, Ian Peters, Rodney West, Mike Pratt, Alan Miller, Mervyn Miller and Malcolm Cavanagh), Rob Duncan, Lackford RG (Colin Jakes, Malcolm Wright and Peter Lack), Landguard RG (Mike Marsh, David Crawshaw, Nigel Odin, Oliver Slessor and others), Market Weston RG (Nigel and Jacquie Clark and others), Newton and Wright (Paul Newton, Mick Wright and Dean Backhouse), Suffolk Community Barn Owl Project (Alec Hillier and others), SWT Tree Sparrow Project (Joe Davis and others), Brian Thompson and Nicola Hedges, Thetford Forest RG, John Walshe, Waveney Ringing Group (Steve Piotrowski, Stephen Flory, Chris Mclntyre and others). Apologies to anyone I've inadvertently missed. Simon:

Lesser Redpoll Su Gough

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Species Mute Swan Cygnus olor Canada Goose Branla canadensis Shelduck Tadorna tadorna Wigeon Anas penelope Gadwall Anas strepera Teal Anas crecca Mallard Anas platyrhynchos Tufted Duck Aythya fuligula Grey Partridge Perdix perdix Manx Shearwater Puffinus puffinus Grey Heron Ardea cinerea Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis Marsh Harrier Circus aeruginosas Hen Harrier Circus cyaneus Goshawk Accipiter genlilis Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus Buzzard Buteo buteo Kestrel Falco tinnunculus Merlin Falco columbarius Hobby Falco subbuteo Peregrine Falco peregrinus Water Rail Rallus aquaticus Moorhen Gallinula chloropus Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta Stone-curlew Burhinus oedicnemus Little Ringed Plover Charadrius dubius Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula Golden Plover Pluvialis apricaria Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola Lapwing Vanellus vanellus Knot Calidris canutus Sanderling Calidris alba Little Stint Calidris minuta Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea Dunlin Calidris alpina Ruff Philomachus pugnax Jack Snipe Lymnocryptes minimus Snipe Gallinago gallinago Woodcock Scolopax rusticola Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus Curlew Numenius arquata Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos Green Sandpiper Tringa ochropus Spotted Redshank Tringa erythropus Greenshank Tringa nebularia Redshank Tringa totanus Turnstone Arenaria interpres Kittiwake Rissa tridactvla Black-headed Gull Chroicocephalus ridibundus Mediterranean Gull Larus melanocephalus Common Gull Larus canus Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus Herring Gull Larus argentatus Great Black-backed Gull Larus marinus Common Tern Sterna hirundo


2009 3 5 6 0 0 39 3 0

2010 1 0 2 9 0 25 1 0

2011 1 0 5 2 1 16 15 7

0 0 10 0 0 80 1 92 0 12 4 3 22 4 25 77 0 23 4 6 32 42

1 1 9 0 5 85 1 105 3 8 4 5 13 2 17 99 0 13 4 14 20 21

0 0 13 1 0 81 5 84 0 3 4 4 12 5 28 87 5 13 9 19 46 10

0 0 447 1 2 15 5 46 4 0 9 1 0 2 10 513 7 110 56 1 1 203 35 0 186

1 1 175 1 3 5 12 23 13 1 1 3 6 0 9 350 2 168 167 6 22 327 114 2 110

0 0 361 0 5 6 7 54 16 0 10 1 1 1 11 378 1 134 51 1 3 544 149 0 85

2012 3 0 0 11 1 24 10 0 2 1 2 0 21 0 2 51 8 101 0 7 1 1 24 4 4 74 1 4 11 6 36 15 1 0 1 125 3 0 10 10 21 12 0 0 7 3 0 5 172 18 62 44 1 23 275 105 0 63

Suffolk Rlnging Report 2012 Species Stock Dove Columba oenas Woodpigeon Columba palumbus Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto Turtle Dove Streptopelia turtur Ring-necked Parakeet Psittacula krameri Cuckoo Cuculus canorus Barn Owl Tyto alba Little Owl Athene noctua Tawny Owl Strix aluco Long-eared Owl Asio otus Short-eared Owl Asioflammeus Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus Swift Apus apus Kingfisher Alcedo atthis Wryneck Jynx torquilla Green Woodpecker Picus viridis Great Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos major Red-backed Shrike Lanius cotlurio Great Grey Shrike Lanius excubitor Magpie Pica pica Jay Garrulus glandarius Jackdaw Corvus monedula Rook Corvus frugilegus Carrion Crow Corvus corone Goldcrest Regulus regulus Firecrest Regulus ignicapilla Blue Tit Cyanistes caeruleus Great Tit Parus major Coal Tit Periparus ater Willow Tit Poecile montana Marsh Tit Poecile palustris Bearded Tit Panurus biarmicus Woodlark Lullula arborea Skylark Alauda arvensis Shore Lark Eremophila alpestris Sand Martin Riparia riparia Swallow Hirundo rustica House Martin Delichon urbicum Cetti's Warbler Cettia cetti Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus Greenish Warbler Phylloscopus trochiloides Arctic Warbler Phylloscopus borealis Pallas's Warbler Phylloscopus proregulus Yellow-browed Warbler Phylloscopus inornatus Dusky Warbler Phylloscopus fuscatus Radde's Warbler Phylloscopus schwarzi Wood Warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita Willow Warbler Phylloscopus trochilus Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla Garden Warbler Sylvia borin Lesser Whitethroat Sylvia curruca Whitethroat Sylvia communis Dartford Warbler Sylvia undata Grasshopper Warbler Locustella naevia Savi's Warbler Locustella luscinioides Booted Warbler ยกduna caligata Melodious Warbler Hippolais polyglotta


2009 194 143 91 5 0 1 229 36 44 0 0 34 14 38 3 71 77 0 0 12 31 104 6 1 249 58 3854 3477 463 2 80 304 80 38 0 549 1949 187 213 1131 1 1 0 4 0

2010 185 195 159 11 1 2 315 36 49 1 0 17 27 27 1 72 83 1 0 14 50 73 4 6 961 74 5757 3904 473 1 80 448 68 19 5 399 1907 220 172 1540 0 0 0 0 0

2011 152 143 134 6 0 4 445 30 56 0 0 23 18 38 2 59 70 0 2 29 39 72 4 0 558 60 5907 3948 532 0 132 215 92 17 2 579 2169 230 155 1228 0 0 1 5 3

0 1362 1089 2864 385 599 1745 69 29 0 0 1

3 1220 881 1859 287 455 1306 8 29 1 0 0

1 1576 593 3368 213 449 1685 48 37 0 1 0

2012 184 159 85 6 0 2 702 29 39 0 1 23 128 36 2 29 91 0 1 21 63 69 5 5 1112 42 5608 3336 513 0 105 186 122 24 0 131 1503 143 79 987 1 0 0 3 0 1 1 4 1364 913 2660 205 344 1050 53 20 0 0 0

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Species Sedge Warbler Acrocephalus schoenobaenus Marsh Warbler Acrocephalus palustris Reed Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus Waxwing Bombycilla garrulus Nuthatch Sitta europaea Treecreeper Certhia familiaris Short-toed Treecreeper Certhia brachydactyla Wren Troglodytes troglodytes Starling Sturnus vulgaris Ring Ouzel Turdus torquatus Blackbird Turdus meruta Fieldfare Turdus pilaris Song Thrush Turdus philomelos Redwing Turdus iliacus Mistle Thrush Turdus viscivorus Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata Robin Erithacus rubecula Nightingale Luscinia megarhynchos Bluethroat Luscinia svecica Red-flanked Bluetail Tarsiger cyanurus Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca Black Redstart Phoenicurus ochruros Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus Whinchat SaxĂ­cola rubetra Stonechat SaxĂ­cola torquatus Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe Dunnock Prunella modularis House Sparrow Passer domesticas Tree Sparrow Passer montanus Yellow Wagtail Motacillaflava Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea Pied/White Wagtail Motacilla alba Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis Rock Pipit Anthus petrosus Water Pipit Anthus spinoletta Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs Brambling Fringilla montifringilla Greenfinch Carduelis chloris Serin Serinus serinus Goldfinch Carduelis carduelis Siskin Carduelis spinus Linnet Carduelis cannabina Twite Carduelisflavirostris Lesser Redpoll Carduelis cabaret Common Redpoll Carduelis flammea Redpoll (Common/Lesser) Carduelis flammea/cabaret Arctic Redpoll Carduelis hornemanni Common Crossbill Loxia curvirostra Common Rosefinch Carpodacus erythrinus Bullfinch Pyrrhula pyrrhula Snow Bunting Plectrophenax nivalis Yellowhammer Emberiza citrinella Little Bunting Emberiza pusilla Reed Bunting Emberiza schoeniclus Corn Bunting Emberiza calandra Grand Total Total Species


2009 3011 1 4121 21 25 90 0 948 598 1 2639 93 568 213 11 54 1542 40

2010 3027 0 3617 15 35 122 0 722 654 2 3532 350 692 257 23 55 1774 52

2011 2181 1 3079 7 29 139 1 818 761 1 3235 24 611 234 18 62 1603 54

0 23 9 17 19 158 10 1713 428 396 8 28 120 23 1081 2 0 2619 129 3146

0 23 13 66 21 101 13 1626 499 829 63 33 211 2 954 6 2 2651 451 2295

2 8 13 14 20 177 30 1585 304 642 91 14 150 19 879 2 2 2250 678 2337

2975 2984 614 11 1048 12 7

2779 645 910 30 1742 78 4

2542 1881 665 14 2131 150 13

113 0 251 97 691 0 1401 0 58173 133

87 1 212 59 818 1 1678 1 59229 145

107 0 237 33 869 1 1480 2 59625 143

2012 2084 3 2986 4 43 116 0 856 473 15 3989 153 733 260 22 69 1833 50 1 0 28 11 46 7 50 146 1473 378 540 52 30 93 9 989 3 3 2394 396 3017 1 3404 1092 1144 0 4273 22 39 1 175 1 304 21 1420 0 1374 0 60201 143

Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012

Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 Over the following pages 1 have included a selection of the more interesting recoveries reported in 2012 and a few from previous years that have only more recently been received. They include the more unusual of reports, as available space allows, involving birds travelling greater distances or being older than usual, and do not represent a complete account of the records available. The selection was made from the online data presented by the BTO and information supplied directly by some of Suffolk's ringers. 1 would like to continue to encourage the county's ringers and observers to forward their data directly, particularly recoveries data, as the online information provides only a limited view of what has actually been recorded. The selection is presented in species order with the initial capture and ringing data on the first line. Foreign ringing scheme code (if applicable), ring number, age and sex (if known), date and location are provided. The second and any subsequent lines report the means of recovery, date and location with coordinates. Following this, distance, direction and duration between reports is summarised. I have added a few comments to some of the records. Again, accounts for some species, notably the gulls and waders, have had to be somewhat selective due to the vast number of recoveries, particularly those involving observations of colour rings and tags. A huge thanks to all who take the time and effort to record and report these valuable sightings. Mute Swan Z78476

First-year Freshly dead (natural causes)

19-04-1994 15-08-2012

Snettisham Coastal Park: c.52°52'N 0°26'E (Norfolk) West Row Fen: 52°22'N 0°24'E (Suffolk) 56km S 18y 3m 27d

White fronted Goose NLA 7135460 Adult Male 02-12-2008 Alive 31-12-2012 (ring read in field)

Eemdijk: 52°16'N 5°21'E (Utrecht) The Netherlands North Warren RSPB Reserve: 52°10'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) 256km W 4y 0m 29d The third Dutch-ringed White-front to be recorded in Suffolk. One from Germany represents the only other foreign exchange

Canada Goose 5267216

Adult Male 25-06-2012 Freshly dead (shot) 01-11-2012

Thetford: c.52°24'N 0°45'E (Norfolk) Great Livermere: 52°18'N 0°45'E (Suffolk) 12km S Oy 4m 7d

Shelduck GF77067

Nestling Freshly dead (hit by car)

07-07-1999 (08-06-2012)

Trimley Marshes, near Felixstowe: 51°58TS1 (Suffolk) Between Elveden and Bury St Edmunds: c.52°18'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) 56km NW 12y 1 lm Id

Teal EW90543

26-12-2010 Adult Male Freshly dead (shot) 04-11-2012

FRPFS79419 First-year Male


Freshly dead (shot) 26-11-2011 FRP FX 19660 28-01-2008 First-year Male

Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Brake: c.53"^™ 8°29'E (Weser-Ems) Germanv 483km ENEly 10m 9d la Grand'mare, Sainte-Opportune-La-Mare: 49°25'N 0°32'E (Eure) France Sudbourne: 52=7^ 1'°31 "E (Suffolk) 308km NNE 1 y 9m 25d Domaine de Beauguillot, Sainte-Marie-Du-Mont: 49°22'N r i 3 W (Manche) France


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Freshly dead (shot)


Waldringfield: 5202^11°19E (Suffolk) 299km N ly I Im Od These are the three Teal foreign exchanges for the county in 2012 including the 9th to Germany.

Pintail FH02252

First-year 10-02-2006 Freshly dead (shot) 06-10-2012

Slimbridge: 51°44'N 2°24AV (Gloucestershire) Friston: 5 2 0 1 0 ^ 1°32'E (Suffolk) 274km E 6y 7m 26d

Adult Male Alive (trapped)

15-12-2009 21-03-2012

Welney: 52°31'N O 0 ^ (Norfolk) Elveden Forest Holiday Centre, Elveden: 52°23'N O ^ T Î (Suffolk) 31km ESE 2y 3m 6d


lle de Terre, Saint-Marcouf: 49°28'N 1°1TW (Manche) France Higham: 51 "58^ O ^ ö E (Suffolk) 319km NNE 1 y 9m 30d

Pochard GC62607

Cormorant FRP CF38499 Nestling Freshly dead DEH BA20896 Nestling

17-02-2012 14-05-2009

Alive 03-03-2012 (colour rings seen) Alive 11-03-2012 (ring read in field)

Schwedt/Oder, Uckermark: 5 3 = 4 » l W E (Berlin) Germany Brandon Marsh: 52°22'N 1°2TW (Warwickshire) 1,067km W 2 y 9 m 18d Havergate Island: c.52°4"N 1°3 I E (Suffolk) 874km W 2y 9m 26d

Grey Heron PLG CN05021 Nestling


Freshly dead 15-02-2012 (on wire or netting)

Grodzisko, Osieezna, Wielkopolskie: S l ^ N 16°43'E (Poznan) Poland Easton, Wickam Market: 52°9'N 1°19T. (Suffolk) 1,053km W Oy 8 m 2 1 d The first Polish-ringed Heron reported in the county.

Spoonbill NLA 8048768 Nestling Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive

•06-2007 07 •11-2007

marks seen) 06 •02-2008 marks seen) 25 04-2008

Oosterkwelder: 5 3 - 2 9 ^ 6°9'E (Schiermonnikoog) The Netherlands River Taw, Barnstaple: Sl^TM 4°3AV (Devon) 743km WSW Oy 4m 28d Isley Marshes, Chivenor: 51051M 4°8'W (Devon) 748kmWSW0y 7m 27d Dungeness: 50°54'N O ^ E (Kent) 455km SW Oy 10m 15d

marks seen) 02 05-2008 marks seen) 15 06-2008 marks seen) 01 •07-2008 marks seen) 06 •07-2008 rings seen) 30 08-2008 marks seen) 09 10-2008 marks seen) 21 02-2009 rings seen) 14 03-2009

Breydon Water: 52°36'N 1°40'E (Norfolk) 316km WSW Oy 10m 22d Minsmere Nature Reserve, Westleton: 52°14'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) 336km WSW ly 0m 5d Trimlev Marshes, near Felixstowe: 5 ^SS'N I'lS'E (Suffolk) 370km WSW ly 0m 2 l d Cley-next-the-Sea: 52°57TM 1°3'E (Norfolk) 346km WSW ly 0m 26d Breydon Marshes: 52°36'N 1 °41 ^ (Norfolk) 315km WSW ly 2 m 2 0 d Isley Marshes, Chivenor: 51°4'N 4°10'W (Devon) 751km WSW l y 3 m 29d River Taw, Barnstaple: 51°5"N 4°3'W (Devon) 743km WSW ly 8m l i d Dee Estuary, Burton: 53=15^ 3°2'W (Cheshire) 610km


Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour Alive (colour

marks seen) 05-04-2009 marks seen) 13-04-2009 marks seen) 01-05-2009 marks seen) 24-09-2009 rings seen) 27-02-2010 rings seen) 26-03-2010 rings seen) 05-09-2010 rings seen) 7-10-2010 rings seen) 27-08-2011 rings seen) 04-09-2011 rings seen) 08-10-2011 rings seen) 16-10-2011 rings seen) 05-02-2012 rings seen) 29-02-2012 rings seen) 01-09-2012 rings seen) 16-09-2012 rings seen)

W ly 9m 4d River Taw, Barnstaple: 51°5'N 4°3'W (Devon) 743km WSW ly 9m 26d Dee Estuary, Burton: 53°15'N 3°2'W (Cheshire) 610km W ly 10m 3d Havergate Island: 52°5'N 1°32"E (Suffolk) 348km WSW ly 10m 21d Isley Marshes, Chivenor: 51°47M 4°10'W (Devon) 751 km WSW 2y 3m 14d River Taw, near Barnstaple: Sl^TM 4°7'W (Devon) 747km WSW 2y 8m 17d Berney Marshes: 52°35'N l ^ E (Norfolk) 318km W S W 2 y 9m 16d River Taw, Barnstaple: 51°51M 4°3'W (Devon) 743km WSW 3y 2m 26d Brownsea Island Lagoon: 50°41"N 1°57'W (Dorset) 635km WSW 3 y 4 m 17d River Taw, Barnstaple: 51-5™ 4°3"W (Devon) 743km WSW 4y 2m 17d Havergate Island: 52°5'N 1°31 'E (Suffolk) 349km WSW 4y 2m 25d Bowling Green Marsh, Topsham: 50°40'N 3°27'W (Devon) 727km WSW 4y 3m 28d River Taw, Barnstaple: 51°4TM 4°5'W (Devon) 746km WSW 4y 4m 6d Isley Marshes, Chivenor: Sl'M'N 4°10W (Devon) 751km WSW 4y 7m 26d Catcott Lows Nature Reserve: 51°I0'N 2°51'W (Somerset) 663km WSW 4y 8m 19d Havergate Island: c.52°4'N 1°31'E (Suffolk) 349km WSW 5y 2m 22d Isley Marsh, River Taw: 51 "4^ 4° 11 "W (Devon) 752km WSW 5y 3m 6d One of two birds from the Netherlands reported in the county in 2012. A further 21 of German origin were recorded.

Marsh Harrier GR18841

Nestling Female Alive (wing-tag seen) Alive (wing-tag seen)

21-06-2012 27-09-2012 30-12-2012

Sculthorpe Moor: 52°50'N 0°49'E (Norfolk) Holme next The Sea: 52058TM 0°33'E (Norfolk) 24km NW Oy 3m 6d Minsmere Nature Reserve: 52°14'N l ^ E (Suffolk) 85km SE Oy 6m 9d Another record from the East Anglia wing-tagging project. Keep those eyes peeled for more!

Sparrowhawk DD46282

14-08-2011 First-year Male Caught by ringer 12-02-2012

Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°3'N 1°27'E (Suffolk) Chelmarsh Reservoir, near Bridgnorth: 52°291M 2°24'W (Shropshire) 267km WNW Oy 5m 29d

Kestrel 18-06-2006 22-09-2012


Nestling Freshly dead (injury)


Nestling Male 17-06-2011 Caught by ringer 29-01-2012 158km NW Oy 7m 12d

Iken Marsh, nearlken: 52°9'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Snape, Saxmundham: 52°10'N 1°30'E (Suffolk) 5km 6y 3m 4d A sad ending for this six year old bird. Earsham: 52°26'N raï (Suffolk) Great Scrubbs Wood: 53° 1 0 ° 1 8 ' W (Lincolnshire)


SuffolkRlngingReport Merlin DB43839

Hobby EW90520

Nestling Male Caught by ringer Caught by ringer

23-06-2005 02-11 -2008 23-10-2012

Site Confidential: c.53°57'N 2°I'W (North Yorkshire) Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1 °34E(Suffolk)317kmSE3y 4m lOd Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1 °34E (Suffolk) 317km SE 7y 4m Od A notable second recapture of this individual male four years after the first.

Adult Male Freshly dead (injury)

20-09-2009 16-08-2012

Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Tunstall, Woodbridge: 52=8^ 1°26-E (Suffolk) 10km W 2y 10m 27d Few recoveries are received for Hobby's, usually involving fatalities.

20-05-2010 05-04-2012

Antwerpen: 5ri3TM 4°22'E (Antwerpen) Belgium Felixstowe: 51"56^ 1°19'E (Suffolk) 226km WNW ly

Peregrine BLB H169683 Nestling Female Dead (predated) 10m 16d GC54557

Nestling 04-05-2010 Alive 24-03-2012 (colour rings seen)

Oystercatcher FA62463 Adult Male Alive (ring read in field) Alive (ring read in field) Alive (ring read in field)

Avocet EW43201 EW43178 EW43216

Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Alive

21-07-1997 03-05-2008 12-04-2009 20-05-2012

22-05-2011 04-02-2012 18-07-2010 18-03-2012 29-05-2011 28-04-2012 08-05-2012

(colour rings seen)

EW43218 EW43232


Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Nestling Alive

Stone-Curlew ER62400 Nestling Freshly dead

29-05-2011 08-11-2012 18-06-2011 21-03-2012

11-06-2007 04-10-2012

Probably predated by the resident local female Peregrine. Ipswich Docks: 52°4'N 1 ° 11 "E (Suffolk) Lowestoft: 52°27'N 1°44'E (Suffolk) 59kmNE ly 10m20d

Holbeach St Matthew: c.52°52'N 0°6E (Lincolnshire) Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) 133km SE lOy 9m 12d Orfordness: ^52=5^ 1°34'E (Suffolk) 133km SE 1 ly 8m 22d Orfordness: c.52°5'N I°34'F. (Suffolk) 133km SE 14y 9m 29d Still away to go before he challenges the longevity record of just over 40 years!

Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34E (Suffolk) Knokke Beach, near Het Zwin: 51 "22^ 3°22'E (WestVlaanderen) Belgium 148km ESE Oy 8m 13d Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Guerande: 47°I8'N 2°28'W (Loire-Atlantique) France 606km SSW ly 8m Od Orfordness: c52°5'N l°34'E (Suffolk) Lauwersmeer, Ezumakeeg: 53°21'N 6°9'E (Friesland) The Netherlands 340km ENE Oy 10m 30 Scheelhoek: SIMÇ'N 4°4'E (Zuid-Holland) The Netherlands 174km E Oy 11m 9d Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Prunjepolder: 51°42TM 3°50E (Zeeland) The Netherlands 162km ESE ly 5m lOd Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Prunjepolder: 51 "421^ 3°50'E (Zeeland) The Netherlands 162km ESE Oy 9m 3d Five of the six foreign reports of Suffolk-ringed birds. A further individual was also reported in The Netherlands

Site Confidential (Suffolk) Gaillon: 49°9"N 1°20'E (Eure) France 349km S 5y 3m 23d 174

Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 A further individuai is currently being investigated as it could challenge the current longevity record. Lapwing DN64596 Nestling Dead (leg only)

20-05-2001 25-06-2012

Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Zierikzee: 51°39TM 3°54'E (Zeeland) The Netherlands 168km ESE lly lm5d The first Suffolk-ringed bird reported from The Netherlands and the only foreign exchange for the species in 2012

Little Stint NOS 8E28479 First-year


Makkevika, Giske: 62°30'N 6°2'E (More og Romsdal) Norway

Dunlin NT55422

Alive 22-09-2012 (colour rings seen)

Orfordness: 52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) 1,188km SSW Oy 0m 14d The second Norweigan-ringed bird recorded in the county. No other foreign-ringed birds have been reported in Suffolk.

First-year Caught by ringer

25-11-2011 21-07-2012

Levington Creek, River Orwell: 52°0TM l°15'E (Suffolk) Ottenby: 56=12^ 16°24'E (Oland) Sweden 1,091km ENE Oy 7m 26d The 50th Suffolk-ringed Dunlin reported from Sweden and the only foreign exchange for the species in 2012

02-03-2003 07-01-2012

River Deben, near Ramsholt Lodge: 52°2'N 1°20E (Suffolk) Loon-Plage: 50°59TM 2°13'E (Nord) France 132km SSE 8y 10m 5d Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Kaldadarnes, Floi, Arnes: 63°56'N 21°10'W Iceland 1,861km NW 7y 10m 6d Flatir, Bolungarvik: 66°7-N 23°15'W Iceland Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9TM 1°34'E (Suffolk) 2,084km SE ly 3m 13d All three foreign exchanges reported in 2012 including some late news from Iceland.

Black-tailed Godwit ET77000 First-year Dead ER62017

Adult 14-08-2004 Caught by ringer 20-06-2012

ISR 580100 Adult Male 11 -07-2007 Caught by ringer 24-10-2008

Bar-tailed Godwit DB61987 Adult Freshly dead

Redshank DD 11421 First-year Alive (colour rings seen) DD 11465 First-year Alive (colour rings seen) DB69932 First-year Male Caught by ringer

14-08-2006 16-02-2012

Ken Hill, Heacham: 52°53'N 0°28'E (Norfolk) River Deben, Ramsholt: 5201"N 1 °2l'E (Suffolk) 114km SSE 5y 6m 2d

06-09-2009 07-04-2012

Levington Creek, River Orwell: 52°0'N l°15'E (Suffolk) Loch of Kinnordy: Só^O'N 3°3'W (Tayside) 589km NNW 2y7m Id Levington Creek, River Orwell: 52°0TM 1°15'E (Suffolk) Jokulsarlon, Breidamerkursandur. Austur Skaftafells: 64°3"N l ó - n * Iceland 1,680km NW 2y 7m 3d Levington Creek, River Orwell: 52°0'N 1 ° 15'E (Suffolk) Normerdijk, Westerland: 52°54'N 4°55"E (NoordHolland) The Netherlands 268km ENE 3y 8m 28d The latter two records were the only reported foreign exchanges for Suffolk-ringed Redshank in 2012

01-10-2009 04-05-2012 15-08-2008 13-05-2012


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Turnstone NLA K905992 Second-year


Noordzeestrand Paal 46: 53017TM 4°59'E (Vlieland) The

Alive 24-01-2004 (colour marks seen) Alive 04-12-2004 (colour marks seen) Alive 27-02-2005 (colour marks seen) Alive 11-11-2007 (colour marks seen) Alive 08-03-2008 (colour marks seen) Alive 20-03-2010 (ring read in field) Alive 28-01-2012 (ring read in field)

Slaughden, near Aldeburgh: 52=8^ l ^ ô ï (Suffolk) 262km WSW 8y 3m 20d Aldeburgh: 52°8TM 1°36'E (Suffolk) 262km WSW 9y 2m Od Aldeburgh: 52°8'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) 262km WSW 9y 4m 23d Aldeburgh: 52°8'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) 262km WSW 12y lm 7d Aldeburgh: 52°8'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) 262km WSW 12y 5m 4d Slaughden, near Aldeburgh: 52°8'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) 262km WSW 14y 5m 16d Slaughden, near Aldeburgh: 52=8^ l ^ ô ï (Suffolk) 262km WSW 16y 3m 24d The 9th report of a Dutch-ringed bird in the county. Other singles have come from Finland, Norway and Canada.


Kittiwake EX56583 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) EP67391 Nestling Alive (ring read in field) ER72299 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) EX56591 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Long dead

27-06-2011 21-08-2012 20-07-1991 12-11-2012 28-06-2010 27-07-2011 25-01-2012 27-06-2011 06-01-2012 11-03-2012

Black-headed Gull DK.C 6215424 Nestling

Lowestoft: 52°28"N 1°45'E (Suffolk) Ythan Estuary: 57°18TM 2°0'W (Grampian Region) 588km NNW ly lm25d Puffin Island: c.53"^™ 4°2'W (Anglesey) Lowestoft: 52°29TM 1°45'E (Suffolk) 399km ESE 21y 3m 23d Lowestoft: 52°28'N 1°45'E (Suffolk) Hanstholm Havn: 57°7'N 8°36'E (Jylland) Denmark 678km NE Iy0m29d Blankenberge Haven: SPSO'N 3°10'E (WestVlaanderen) Belgium 145km SE ly 6m 28d Lowestoft: 52°28'N l ^ B (Suffolk) Westkapelle, Walcheren: 51 "31^ 3°26'E (Zeeland) The Netherlands 157km SE Oy 6m lOd Andijk: 52°44"N 5°12'E (Noord-Holland) The Netherlands 235km E Oy 8m 13d The latter two represent both the Lowestoft birds reported abroad in 2012, including the first to Belgium. Two of the 3 Suffolk reported birds abroad and 26 foreign-ringed birds recorded in the county in 2012


Hirsholm, Frederikshavn: 57°297M 10°37'E (Jylland) Denmark

Alive 01-12-2010 (colour rings seen) L1K340150 Second-year 30-05-1997 Freshly dead 19-11-2012 EL88430


Second-year Alive (ring read in field) Alive (ring read in field) First-year Alive (ring read in field)

08-02-2006 19-02-2011 12-12-2011 31-12-1996 05-07-2005

Leathes Ham, Lowestoft: 52°29'N !°43'E (Suffolk) 794km SW 21y 5m 15d Ventes Ragas, Silute: SS^ITC 21°13'E Lithuania Cattawade Marshes: 51 °57TM 1°3'E (Suffolk) 1,380km WSW 15y 5m 20d Hyde Park: 5r30TM 0°10'W (Greater London) Southwold: 52° 18TM 1 "WE (Suffolk) 154km NE 5y 0m 11 d Walberswick: 52° 187-4 1°39'E (Suffolk) 153km NE 5y 10m 4d near Castle Hill, Ipswich: 52°4"N 1°8'E (Suffolk) Riga: 56-53™ 24°14'E Latvia 1,583km ENE 8y 6m 4d


Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 Alive 04-04-2007 (ring read in field) Alive 22-05-2009 (ring read in field) Alive 19-04-2012 (ring read in field) Mediterranean Gull DEW 5350316 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) HGB 387189 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Common Gull SVS 7205939 Nestling

14-06-2008 07-04-2010 25-07-2010 01-03-2012 23-06-2011 14-04-2012


near Rumbula, Riga: 56°53TM 24°14'E Latvia 1,583k ENE lOy 3m 4d Rumbula, Riga: 56°53"N 24°14'E (Latviya) Latvia 1,583km ENE I2y4m21d Rumbula. Riga: 56°53'N 24°15'E (Latviya) Latvia 1,584km ENE 15y3m 19d

Pionierinsel Luhe, Grunendeich: 53°34"N 9°36'E (Luneburg) Germany Rutland Water: c.52°39'N 0°42'W (Leicestershire) 695km W ly9m 24d Blythburgh: 52°19'N l ^ E (Suffolk) 555km WSW 2y lm lid Seaton Carew, Hartlepool: 54°40'N l°l 1"W (Cleveland) 713km W3y 8m 16d Bugyi (Kavies Union): 47°I2'N 19°7'E (Pest) Hungary Mistley: 51 °57"N l ^ i (Suffolk) 1,401km WNW Oy 9m 22d The 13th report of a Hungarian-ringed bird in the county.

Lovobadan, Holmsund: 63°4nM 20°28'E (Vasterbotten) Sweden

Freshly dead


DKCAC1517 First-year Male 25-11 -2010 Alive 18-12-2010 (colour rings seen) Lesser Black-backed Gull BLB L902300 Nestling Alive (ring read in field) Alive (ring read in field) CIJD4745 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) DKC 4L 1184 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) DKC 4L0495 Nestling

10-07-2005 03-04-2011 24-03-2012 10-07-2009 21-06-2010

Woodbridge: 52°6'N l°18'E (Suffolk) 1,706km SW Oy 6m 28d Borgvold Viborg: 56°27'N 9°25'E (Jylland) Denmark Oulton Broad near Lowestoft: 52°28TM 1°42'E (Suffolk) 667km SW Oy 0m 23d Both foreign-ringed birds reported in Sufflok in 2012

Zeebrugge: 51°20'N 3°11'E (West-Vlaanderen) Belgium Orfordness: c.5205TM 1°34"E (Suffolk) 140km NW 5y 8m 24d Orfordness: c.52°5'N I °34'E (Suffolk) 140km NW 6y 8m 14d Burhou: 49°43rN 2°15'W (Alderney) Channel Islands Minsmere: 52°15'N 1°37'E (Suffolk) 391km NE Oy 1 Im lid

01-07-2008 17-03-2012

Langli, Blavandshuk: 5503nM 8° 19t (Jylland) Denmark Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) 585km SW 3y 8m I6d


Hirsholm, Frederikshavn: 57°29'N 10°37'E (Jylland) Denmark

Alive 10-09-2010 (colour rings seen) DKC 4L 1368 Nestling 05-07-2008 Alive 06-08-2011 (colour rings seen) FRP EA672661

Weybred, Diss: 52°22"N l°18'E (Suffolk) 823km SW Oy 2m 24d Klaegbanke, Skjern: 56°0TM 8°17'E (Jylland) Denmark Blythbutgh: 52°I9'N l ^ t (Suffolk) 597km SW 3y lm Id


SuffolkRlngingReport Nestling Dead

05-07-2008 03-05-2012

FRP EA676423 Nestling 27- 06-2009 Alive 24- 04-2012 (colour rings seen) DEW 4305339 Nestling 09- 07-2010 Alive 07- 04-2012 (colour marks seen) GK38437 Nestling 09- 07-1983 Alive 14- 09-1996 (ring read in field) Alive 08-1998 (ring read in field) Alive 08-2000 (ring read in field) Alive 08-2004 (ring read in field) Alive 09-2007 (ring read in field) Alive 08-2008 (ring read in field) Alive 09-2009 (ring read in field) Alive 08-2011 (ring read in field) Alive 09-2012 GG78123


GN56696 GN56864

Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Nestling Alive (colour rings seen)

Herring Gull FRP EA676005 Nestling

11-07-2010 19-02-2012 11 -07-2012 11-07-2010 19-08-2010 14-04-2011 11 -08-2011 05-02-2012 18-05-2012 30-07-2010 12-04-2012 14-07-2011 11-04-2012



Gravelines: 51 "OTM 2° 1 'E (Pas-de-Calais) France Havergate Island: 52°4'N I °31 'E (Suffolk) 124km NNW 3y 9m 28d Calais: 50°57'N 1°52'E (Pas-de-Calais) France Havergate Island: 52°4'N 1°31'E (Suffolk) 127km N 2y 9m 28d Helgoland Dune: 54°11TM 7°54'E (Helgoland) Germany Mickle Mere, Pakenham: 52°17'N 0°50'E (Suffolk) 516km WSW ly 8m 29d Orfordness: 52°7"N l°33'E (Suffolk) Boulogne sur Mer: 50°44"N 1 °34'E (Pas-de-Calais) France 154km S 13y 2m 5d Boulogne sur Mer: 50°44'N 1 °36'E (Pas-de-Calais) France 148km S 15y lm Id Bologne sur Mer: 50°44'N 1°35'E (Pas-de-Calais) France 148km S 17y lm 18d Boulogne-Sur-Mer: 50°44'N 1°35'H (Pas-de-Calais) France 154km S 21y lm Id Boulogne-Sur-Mer: 50°44'N l ^ E (Pas-de-Calais) France 154km S 24y 2m Od Boulogne-Sur-Mer: 50°44TM l ^ t (Pas-de-Calais) France 154km S 25y lm Id Boulogne-Sur-Mer: 50°43TM 1°36'E (Pas-de-Calais) France 156km S 26y lm 27d Boulogne-Sur-Mer: 50=43^ 1°34'E (Pas-de-Calais) France 156km S 28y lm 18d Boulogne-Sur-Mer: 50°44'N 1°35'E (Pas-de-Calais) France 154km S 29y 2m 16d Havergate Island: 52°4'N l°31'E (Suffolk) Oued Massa, near Massa: 30°4'N 9°39'W Morocco 2,612km SSW ly 7m 8d Nevern Estuary, Newport: 52°1TM 4°50'W (Dyfed) 434km W 2y 0m Od Havergate Island: 52°4TM 1°31'E (Suffolk) Barro Estuary, Lianes: 43°26TM 4°50'W (Oviedo) Spain 1,070km SSW Oy lm8d Anza, near Agadir: S O ^ H 9°39'W Morocco 2,573km SSW Oy 9m 3d Blaringhem: 50°40'N 2°23"E (Nord) France 167km SSE ly lm Od Anza, near Agadir: 30°26"N 9°39'W Morocco 2,573km SSW ly 6m 25d Tittesworth Water, near Leek: 53°8'N 2° 1W (Staffordshire) 267km WNW ly 10m 7d Port of Felixstowe, Felixstowe: 51°57TM 1°19'E (Suffolk) Nouakchott: 18=5^ ^ " ( W Mauritania 4,062km SSW ly 8m 13d Port of Felixstowe, Felixstowe: 51°57"N 1°19'E (Suffolk) Nouakchott: 1805"N 16°0'W Mauritania 4,062km SSW Oy 8m 28d A selection from the 335 Suffolk-ringed birds recorded abroad and 23 foreign-ringed birds reported in Suffolk in 2012, including the first from Germany.

Zip Des Huttes, Gravelines: 50°59'N 2°7'E (Nord) France 178

Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 Alive 26-01-2010 (colour rings seen) FRP EA675911 Nestling 27-06-2009

Sizewell: 52°12'N 1°37'E (Suffolk) 140km NNW Oy 6m 15d

Alive (colour rings seen) FRP EA675969 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) GG93719 Nestling Alive (ring read in field) GR06259 First-year


Orfordness: 52°4'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) 127km NNW ly 8m Od

11-07-2009 25-01-2011

Umicore, Calais: 50°56TM 1 °45'E (Pas-de-Calais) France Dungeness: 50°55TM 0°56'E (Kent) 58km W I y 6m 14d


Minsmere: 52°147M 1°37"E (Suffolk) 145km N 2y 8m 15d Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Brancaster Staithe: 52°58'N 0°40'E (Norfolk) 116km NNW 20y 7m Od near Hempsted, Gloucester: 51 °51 "N 2° 17W (Gloucestershire) South wold Harbour: 52°19'N 1 °40'E (Suffolk) 275km E ly 4m 18d Seamer Carr Landfill, Scarborough: 54013TM 0o25"W (North Yorkshire) Minsmere RSPB Reserve: c.52014TM l ^ ô ï (Suffolk) 258km SSE 4y 0m 18d All three foreign-ringed birds reported in the county. In addition 21 Suffolk-ringed birds were reported in France and another in Belgium.

Zip Des Huttes, Gravelines: 50°597M 2°7'E (Nord) France


08-07-1991 08-02-2012 20-11-2010

07-04-2012 Alive (colour rings seen) First-year 20-02-2008 09-03-2012 Alive (colour rings seen)

Caspian Gull PLG DN27031 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen) Alive (colour rings seen) PLG DN28915 Nestling Alive (colour rings seen)

24-05-2011 20-08-2011 29-05-2012 25-05-2012 30-07-2012

Greater Black-backed Gull NOS 3022172 Nestling 27-06-2011 Alive 17-01-2012 (colour rings seen) MA07218 Nestling 28-06-2011 Alive 18-03-2012 (colour rings seen) Woodpigeon FH17409 Adult 26-12-2010 Freshly dead (shot) 02-11 -2012

Zwirownia Zakole, Jankowice, Babice, Malopolskie: 50°2TM 19°28'E (Krakow) Poland Feltwell Tip: c.52°30"N 0°34'E (Norfolk) 1,342km WNW Oy 2m 27d Minsmere: 52°14'N 1°37'E (Suffolk) 1,268km WNW ly 0m 5d Zb Kozielno, Paczkow: 50°28TM I6°58'F. (Opole) Poland Great Livermere Lake: 52°18'N 0°45'E (Suffolk) 0km Oy 2m 5d Two of the three reports involving Polish-ringed birds in the county in 2012.

Ostre Mageholmen: 58°57M 8°5'E (Vest-Agder) Norway Lowestoft: 52°271\l 1°45'E (Suffolk) 742km SSW Oy 6m 21 d The only foreign exchange for the county in 2012. Badbea, Berriedale: 58°9TM 3°33'W (Highland Region) Lowestoft Harbour: 52°28'N 1°45'E (Suffolk) 715km SSE Oy 8m I9d near Hollesley Heath: 52°3'N \°26-E (Suffolk) St Martin du Bec: 49°36'N 0°12'E (Seine-Maritime) France 286km SSW ly 10m 7d The fourth Suffolk-ringed bird reported in France


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Barn Owl GC03827 Nestling Freshly dead (disease) GR33779 Nestling Alive Little Owl ES41922 Nestling Freshly dead EX94319 Second-year Dead Tawny Owl GN61694 Adult Freshly dead (hit by car)

Nightjar LB 12415


22-04-2012 15-06-2011 20-04-2012

06-06-2011 08-02-2012

13-05-2012 28-07-2012

02-07-2003 01-06-2011

near Newborough: 52°39'N CBAV (Cambridgeshire) Harkstead: 51=58™ 1°10'E (Suffolk) 121km SE 5y 9m 25d Sunnyside Farm, Ingoldsby: 52°51N 0°29'W (Lincolnshire) Newton: 52° 1 T>J 0°50'E (Suffolk) 129km SE Oy 10m 5d Levington, near River Orwell: 52°0'N 1°15'E (Suffolk) Levington: 52°0'N Pló'E (Suffolk) 2km Oy 8m 2d Flordon Road, Creeting St Mary: 52°9"N 1°3'E (Suffolk) Needham Lake, Needham Market: 52°8'N 1°3'E (Suffolk) 0km Oy 2m 15d

near Stowupland: c.52°12'N 1°3'E (Suffolk) Saxham Street: 52°12"N 1°3'E (Suffolk) 0km 7y 10m 30d A sorry end for this bird after over seven years. The current longevity record stands at nearly 21 and a half years!

Adult Female Caught by ringer

03-06-2010 25-07-2012

The King's Forest: 52°20TM 0°39'E (Suffolk) near Parsonage Heath: 52=24^ 0°39'E (Suffolk) 8km N 2y lm 22d

Green Woodpecker DR34182 Adult Male Caught by ringer

20-09-2008 28-10-2012

Sizewell Belts, Sizewell: 52°13'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) Minsmere Nature Reserve: 52°15TM 1°37'E (Suffolk) 4km 4y 1 m 8d One of very few recoveries for this species in 2012.

Greater-spotted Woodpecker LE25473 First-year 17-06-2012 Caught by ringer 19-09-2012 Jackdaw EP17123 Nestling Freshly dead (trapped) ET77993

01-06-1996 12-05-2012

Nestling Female Caught by ringer

31-05-2002 29-06-2012

Goldcrest EHB624 First-year Female





Freshly dead (cat) 13-05-2012 First-year 10-10-2012 Caught by ringer


First-year Female


Caught by ringer


First-year Female


Dukes Warren: SITOTC 0°22'W (Surrey) Thomdon: 52°17'N 1 °7'E (Suffolk) 161km NE Oy 3m 2d Thetford Heath: 52°23'N 0°43'E (Suffolk) Elveden Park: 52°22TM O^OE (Suffolk) 4km 15y 11 m 11 d Just 14 months short of the current longevity record for this species. Earl Stonham: 52° 11TM 1 TE (Suffolk) Brewery Farm, Earl Stonham: c.52°l 1 "N l ^ T (Suffolk) 3km lOy 0m 29d Titchfield Haven, Hill Head, Fareham: SO^-N TISW (Hampshire) Lowestoft: 52°31'N 1°42E (Suffolk) 278km NE Oy 6m 28d Gibraltar Point, Skegness: c.53°6'N 0°19'E (Lincolnshire) The Haven, Thorpeness: 52°10'N l°36'E (Suffolk) 136km SE Oy lm4d Gibraltar Point, Skegness: c.53°6"N 0°19'E (Lincolnshire) Rushmere St Andrew: 5204TM 1°1 l'E (Suffolk) 129km SSE Oy 0m 26d Alderton: 520nM 1°25'E (Suffolk) 180

Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 Caught by ringer 18-10-2012

Firecrest ELE607 First-year Male Freshly dead BRJ663 BRJ665

Blue Tit T906068

First-year Male Alive (colour rings seen) First-year Male Alive

09-10-2012 03-11-2012 22-04-2011 03-04-2012 22-04-2011 01-04-2012

Juvenile 26-08-2006 Caught by ringer 09-03-2012

Great Tit X008623 First-year Female 24-02-2012 Caught by ringer 16-09-2012 Bearded Tit L603025 Full-grown Female 17-10-2010 Caught by ringer 10-07-2011 Caught by ringer 26-05-2012 L491972

Full-grown Male 02-09-2011 Caught by ringer 12-05-2012

Woodlark TR58817 Nestling 28-04-2011 Alive 14-06-2012 (colour rings seen) Sand Martin Y277880 Juvenile 12-08-2012 Caught by ringer 31 -08-2012 Y277877

Juvenile Caught by ringer


First-year 04-09-2012 Caught by ringer 09-09-2012

Swallow T714358


12-08-2012 08-09-2012


Orlestone Forest: 51°4'N 0°50'E (Kent) 113km SSW Oy 0m 8d No foreign exchanges in 2012. Bawdsey Hall: c.52°0'N 1°24'E (Suffolk) Upper Hopton: 53°39"N 1°4I'W (West Yorkshire) 278km NW Oy 0m 25d Brandon Country Park: 52°26'N 0°37'E (Suffolk) near Snake Wood: 52°29'N 0°39'E (Norfolk) 6km NNE Oy lim 12d Brandon Country Park: 52°26'N 0°37'E (Suffolk) Lynford Arboretum: 52°30'N 0°40'E (Norfolk) 9km NNE Oy 11m lOd As with Goldcrest, no individual ringed in Britain and Ireland has been recovered more than three years after ringing. Middle Barn, Bawdsey: 51°59'N 1°24'F. (Suffolk) Bawdsey Hall: c.52°0TM 1°24'E (Suffolk) 2km 5y6m I2d A good age for a Blue Tit. The oldest record to date involves a bird that reached 9 years, 9 months and 2 days. Landguard Point, Felixstowe: 51°56TM 1°19'E (Suffolk) Gibraltar Point, Skegness: c.5306"N 0°19'E (Lincolnshire) 147km NNW Oy 6m 23d The Haven, Thorpeness: 52°I0'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) 3km Oy 8m 23d Hazelwood, near Ham Creek: 52°91M l°33'E (Suffolk) 4km l y 7m 9d Belton Marshes: 52°34TM l°39'E (Norfolk) Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N l°34'E (Suffolk) 47km S Oy 8m lOd near Brickkiln Farm: 52°28'N 0°35'E (Norfolk) King's Forest, Wordwell: 52°19'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) 18km SSE ly lm 17d Fen Farm, Bungay: 52°26'N 1°26'E (Suffolk) Pett Level: c.50°54'N 0°40'E (Sussex) 179km SSW Oy 0m 19d Fen Farm, Bungay: 52°26'N l°26'E (Suffolk) Pett Level: c.50o54TM 0°40'E (Sussex) 179km SSW Oy 0m 27d Pett Level: c.50°54'N 0°40'E (Sussex) Flatford Mill, East Bergholt: 5I°57'N PCE (Suffolk) 120km NNE Oy 0m 5d In addition two Suffolk-ringed birds wererecoveredin France. Weston Fen, Hopton: 52°22'N 0°54'E (Suffolk) 181

SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Alive (in building) 17-07-2012 L651897

First-year Caught by ringer


Nestling 11-06-2011 Caught by ringer 16-09-2012 171km SE ly 3m 5d Nestling 17-06-2012 Caught by ringer 18-08-2012


House Martin X547472 First-year Caught by ringer

24-07-2012 05-09-2012

18-09-2011 18-05-2012

Cetti's Warbler L131843 Full-grown Female 10-04-2010 Caught by ringer 26-06-2010 SSE Oy 2m 16d Caught by ringer 31 -03-2012 SSE ly 11m 21d Wood Warbler DHR922 Adult Male


Alive 08-06-2012 (ring read in field) Chiffchaff ERB273 Juvenile Male Caught by ringer

13-08-2012 06-10-2012


First-year Male 10-10-2010 Caught by ringer 22-04-2012


First-year 04-08-2012 Caught by ringer 08-09-2012


First-year Freshly dead

Willow Warbler CNN499 Adult Female Caught by ringer DYC030

Nestling Female Caught by ringer

23-09-2011 06-06-2012

14-06-2009 01 -06-2012 22-05-2011 13-05-2012

Oak Farm, Langmere, Diss: 52°23'N 1°12'E (Norfolk) 21km E 5y 10m 29d Wolsey Bridge, Blythburgh: c.52°20'N 1°37'E (Suffolk) Pett Level: c.50°54'N 0°40'E (Sussex) 173km SSW Oy Im 12d Baumber Park: c^-lSTM 0°1 l'W (Lincolnshire) near Charity Farm, Shotley: 51 "59^ l°15'E (Suffolk) Cowpasture Farm: c.SPSS'N 1°20'E (Suffolk) Wainfleet Bank: 53°6TM 0°12'E (Lincolnshire) 148km NNW Oy 2m Id No foreign exchange involving Suffolk Swallows was reported in 2012. Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Marston Sewage Works: 52°58'N 0°40'W (Lincolnshire) 181km NW Oy 8m Od Suffolk still awaits it's first foreign-ringed House Martin recovery. Carlton Marshes, Lowestoft: 52°28'N l°41'E (Suffolk) Kessingland, Lowestoft: 52°24'N 1°43'E (Suffolk) 8km Kessingland, Lowestoft: 52°24'N l ^ t (Suffolk) 8km

Site Confidential, near Sutton Common: c.52°4"N 1°23'E (Suffolk) Sutton: c.52°4'N 1°22'E (Suffolk) 2km Oy 0m 28d

Flordon Road, Creeting St Mary: 52°9TM 1°3'E (Suffolk) Schouwen-Duiveland, Burgh Haamstede: 51°40'N 3°41'E (Zeeland) The Netherlands 189km ESE Oy lm 23d Only the 2nd Suffolk-ringed Chiffchaff recovered in The Netherlands. Freelands Farm, Westwell: 51°47TS( 1 " 4 2 ^ (Oxfordshire) Kessingland, Lowestoft: 52°24'N 1°43'E (Suffolk) 244km ENE ly6m 12d Middleton: c.52°34'N 1°43'W (Warwickshire) near Hollesley Heath: 52°3'N 1°26'E (Suffolk) 222km ESE Oy lm 4d Beachy Head: 50°44'N 0°15'E (Sussex) Bentley, Ipswich: 51°59'N 1°4'E (Suffolk) 150km NNE Oy 8m 14d Needham Market: c.5209-N l°3'E (Suffolk) Sycamore Farm, Grundisburgh: c.52°6'N 1°13'E (Suffolk) 13km ESE 2y 1 lm 18d Stowmarket: 52° 1 m 0°59'E (Suffolk) Flordon Road, Creeting St Mary: 52°9"N 1°3'E (Suffolk) 6km SE Oy llm21d


Selected Ringing Recoveries Blackcap L576904 First-year Male 31-08-2010 Freshly dead (cat) 27-03-2012 L844795

Adult Female 15-09-2011 Caught by ringer 21-07-2012


First-year Female Freshly dead (hit by car) First-year Male Caught by ringer

L230757 L353212

24-09-2011 17-02-2012 19-09-2012 30-09-2012

First-year Male 12-09-2010 Caught by ringer 19-04-2011

BLB 12478577 Adult Female 24-09-2011 Caught by ringer 02-09-2012 BLB 12573536 Adult Female 15-09-2012 Caught by ringer 13-10-2012 Y432470

First-year Male Caught by ringer

27-09-2011 12-05-2012

Garden Warbler X746260 Adult 12-08-2009 Caught by ringer 01-06-2012 Y052748

First-year 20-08-2011 Caught by ringer 02-07-2012

Lesser Whitethroat Y818432 First-year 08-09-2012 Caught by ringer 21-09-2012


First-year 18-09-2010 Caught by ringer 02-05-2012

Whitethroat L047437 First-year Female 06-08-2010 Caught by ringer 13-08-2010 Y276260



Freshly dead (hit glass)


for Suffolk in 2012

Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°3"N I°27'E (Suffolk) Beaucouzé, Angers: 47°28TM 0°37'W (Maine-et-Loire) France 531km SSW ly 6m 25d Kessingland, Lowestoft: 52°24'N 1°43'E (Suffolk) Marais de Tardinghen, Wissant: 50°53'N 1°39'E (Pas-de-Calais) France 169km S Oy 10m 6d Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°3TM 1°27'E (Suffolk) Rochefort: 45°56'N 0°57'W (Charente-Maritime) France 702km SSW Oy 4m 24d Landguard Point, Felixstowe: Sl^TM l ^ Ç E (Suffolk) Plaisance, Saint-Froult: 45°54'N 1°4'W (CharenteMaritime) France 693km SSW Oy 0m 1 Id Haddon Hall: c.52°4'N 1°19'E (Suffolk) Overveen: 52°25'N 4°33'E (Noord-Holland) The Netherlands 224km E Oy 7m 7d Heme: 50"44'N 4°2'E (Brabant) Belgium Brewery Farm, Earl Stonham: r.52° 11 "N 1°5'E (Suffolk) 261km NW Oy 11m 9d Bierwart: SO^TM 5°1'E (Namur) Belgium Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°31M 1°27'E (Suffolk) 299km NW Oy 0m 28d Pett Level: c.50°541M 0°40'E (Sussex) "Kessingland, Lowestoft: 52°24'N l°WE (Suffolk) 182km NNEOy 7m 15d All seven foreign exchanges for the county and the furthest movement within the UK for the species involving Suffolk in 2012.

Pett Level: c.50°54'N 0°40"E (Sussex) Minsmere Nature Reserve: 52°15'N 1 "37^ (Suffolk) 164km NNE 2y 9m 20d Pett Level: c.50°541M 0°40'E (Sussex) Flordon Road, Creeting St Mary: 52°9'N 1 "3-E (Suffolk) 142km N Oy 10m 12d

near Hollesley Heath: 52°31M 1°26'E (Suffolk) Oberageri: 47°7"N 8°40'E (Zug) Switzerland 756km SE Oy 0m 13d The second Suffolk-ringed Lesser Whitethroat to be recovered in Switzerland. Orfordness: c.52°5TM 1°34'E (Suffolk) Landguard Point, Felixstowe: 5I°56'N 1°19'E (Suffolk) 24km SW ly7m 14d

Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°3'N 1°27'E (Suffolk) Schouwen-Duiveland, Burgh Haamstede: 51 °40'N S ^ l i (Zeeland) The Netherlands 160km ESE Oy 0m 7d Alton Water Reservoir, nearTattingstone: c.51°59'N \°TE (Suffolk) Herrerea de Duero, Tudela de Duero: 41 "33^ 4°39'W (Valladolid) Spain 1,239km SSW Oy Im 2d


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 The only two Suffolk-ringed birds recovered abroad, including the first to The Netherlands. The latter is the 4th to Spain. Sedge Warbier BLB 10581951 First-year Caught by ringer Caught by ringer


20-07-2009 03-05-2010

1AB 6A61094 Full-grown Male 24-04-2012 Caught by ringer 13-06-2012 L74I688

First-year 05-09-2012 Caught by ringer 15-09-2012


Juvenile 12-07-2012 Caught by ringer 05-08-2012


First-year 09-08-2012 Caught by ringer 13-08-2012

Marsh Warbier NLA AT88367 Adult


Berendrecht: 5 l°21'N 4°19'F, (Antwerpen) Bclgium Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°3'N 1°27'E (Suffolk) 213km WNW Oy lim 18d Cauldwell Hall Farm. Hollesley: 52°3'N 1°27'E (Suffolk) 213km WNW ly 9m ld Sassonia, Erba: 45°48'N 9°14'E (Como) Italy Culford School: c.52°18'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) 954km NW Oy Im 20d Graemeshall Loch, Holm: 58°53'N 2°54AV (Orkney) Orfordness: c.52°5TM 1°34'E (Suffolk) 806km SSE Oy 0m lOd Seaside Dyke, Errol: 56°23TM 3°1 l'W (Tayside) Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) 569km SSE Oy 0m 24d Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Squire's Down: 50-58^ 2°22'W (Dorset) 299km WSW Oy 0m4d Within the above are the only two foreign-ringed birds recovered in the county in 2012, including the first ltalian-ringed Sedge Warbier to be reported in Britain and Ireland. In addition, 26 Suffolk-ringed birds were recovered abroad, 23 in France and three in Belgium.

Castricum: 52°32'N 4°36'E (Noord-Holland) The Netherlands

Caught by ringer 28-05-2012

Reed Warbier T796343 First-year Male 02-08-2005 Caught by ringer 07-07-2012 Y344696

Adult Female Caught by ringer


Juvenile 08-08-2012 Caught by ringer 28-08-2012


First-year Caught by ringer


First-year 16-09-2012 Caught by ringer 07-11-2012

POL A328652 First-year Male

08-05-2012 11-07-2012

25-07-2012 20-08-2012


Landguard Bird Observatory, Felixtowe: 51 °56"N 1 °20'E (Suffolk) 233km WSW Oy 1 Im 16d Only the second foreign-ringed bird recovered in the county. The other was originally ringed in Norway. Cauldwell Hall Farm. Hollesley: 52°37M l°27'E (Suffolk Oxley Marshes, Hollesley: 52°2'N 1°26'E (Suffolk) 3km 6y 1 Im 5d Portland Bill: SO^ITM 2=27^ (Dorset) Lackford Lakes Swt Reserve: c.52°18'N 0°37'E (Suffolk) 291km NE Oy 2m 3d Lakenheath Fen RSPB Reserve: 52°27"N 0°31 "E (Suffolk) Titchfield Häven, Hill Head, Fareham: 50°49'N r i S W (Hampshire) 219km SW Oy 0m 20d Lakenheath Fen RSPB Reserve: 52°27'N 0°31 "E (Suffolk) Marais de Cap, Montmartin-en-Graignes, Manche. 49°16'N 1°13'W France. 374km SSW Oy 0m 26d Walberswick: 52°18'N 1°38'E (Suffolk) Estany D'ivars, Ivars D'urgell: 4!°4I'N 0°58'E (Lerida) Spain 1,181km S Oy lm22d Estuario Do Mondego, Coimbra: 40°9'N 8°52'W (Beira Litoral) Portugal


Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 Caught by ringer 15-07-2012 ESA Y05215 First-year Female 07-08-2010 Caught by ringer 27-05-2012

Wren EAP765

Starling LB67734

Trimley Marshes, Trimley St Mary: c.51 "581^ 1' 17'E (Suffolk) 1,527km NNE Oy 10m 8d Villafranca: 42°16'N 1°45'W (Navarra) Spain Trimley Marshes, Trimley St Mary: c.Sl^S'N 1°17'E (Suffolk) 1,102km NNE ly 9m 20d The latter two records are of the only foreign-ringed birds to be recovered in the county in 2012. Further Suffolkringed birds were recovered in Belgium (2), and additional singles in France and Portugal.

Juvenile Caught by ringer

15-07-2012 Eccles-on-Sea: 52°48'N 1°34'E (Norfolk) 11-10-2012 Landguard Point, Felixstowe: 51 °56TSI 1°19'E (Suffolk) 98km S Oy 2m 26d A fair movement for a Wren!

First-year Male Caught by ringer

17-08-2010 13-03-2012

Kirton, near Boston: 52°55'N 0°4"W (Lincolnshire) Ipswich: 52°2TM 1°1 l'È (Suffolk) 130km SE ly 6m 25d


Landguard Point, Felixstowe: Sl^ólM 1°I9'E (Suffolk) Copdock: 52°2"N l°4'E (Suffolk) 21km NW 6y lm 8d Orfordness: c.5205"N 1 °34'E (Suffolk) Green Bank Park, Liverpool: 53°23'N 2°56'W (Merseyside) 336km WNW Oy 2m 8d Thorndon: 52°17'N I°7'E (Suffolk) Valitie, Eura: öl^TM 22°9'E (Turku-Pori) Finland 1,610km NE 2y 2m 29d East Bergholt: 51058T>J r i í (Suffolk) Helsingintie, Ihamaki, Somero: óO^ó-N 23°35'E (Turku-Pori) Finland 1,685km ENE ly 4m 8d

Blackbird CF66953 First-year Male Caught by ringer LA49465 First-year Male Freshly dead (in net or cage) LB88447 Adult Female Freshly dead (cat) (in net or cage) LB20591 Adult Male Freshly dead (in building) BLB 23Z01158 Adult Female Caught by ringer NOS 7554818 Adult Female Freshly dead (hit glass) SVS 4603618 Adult Female Freshly dead (cold weather)


06-11-2011 14-01-2012 13-02-2010 12-05-2012 17-01-2010 25-05-2011 28-10-2012

04-11-2012 07-11-2011 21-12-2012

01-04-2011 12-02-2012

Song Thrush RT66491 First-year 30-09-2007 Freshly dead (shot)03-04-2012

de Haan: 51017"N 3°2"E (West-Viaanderen) Belgium near Hollesley Heath: 52°3'N 1°26'E (Suffolk) 140km NW Oy 0m 7d Revtangen, Klepp: 580451M 5°30'E (Rogaland) Norway Felixstowe: S l ^ N 1°2It (Suffolk) 800km SSW ly lm 14d Ottenby: 56°12'N 16°24'E (Oland) Sweden Manor Farm, Weybread, Diss: 52°22'N 1°16'E (Suffolk) 1,068km WSW Oy 10m lid Three further foreign-ringed birds made it to Suffolk in 2012, twofromThe Netherlands and one from Germany. In addition, three Suffolk-ringed birds were recovered in Germany as well as singles to Norway and The Netherlands. Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°3"N 1°27'E (Suffolk) Forninhos, Odemira, Beja: 37°35'N 8°44'W (Baixo Alentejo) Portugal 1,794km SSW 4y 6m 4d The 15th Suffolk-ringed Song Thrush recovered in Portugal being the sole foreign exchange in 2012.


Suffolk Bird Report 2012 Robin X008486 X008370

First-year 08- 11-2011 Freshly dead (cat) 31 -10-2012 First-year 29- 10-2011 Alive (in building) 21- 02-2012

BLB 12419499 First-year Male 13- 10-2011 Caught by ringer 11- 11-2011 BLB 12327679 Full-grown 13- 10-2011 Caught by ringer 26- 10-2012 NLA BA65008 Full-grown


Landguard Point. Felixstowe: Sl^TM 1°19'E (Suffolk)" Octeville-Sur-Mer: 49°33"N 0°6'E (Seine-Maritime) France 279km SSW Oy I lm 23d Landguard Point, Felixstowe: 5I°56'N 1019'E (Suffolk) Damwald: S S 0 ^ ^ 5°59'E (Friesland) The Netherlands 348km ENE Oy 3m 23d Sint Laureins: 51°15'N3032'E (Oost-Vlaanderen) Belgium Lapwings, Dunwich: 52°16'N 1°37'E (Suffolk) 174km NW Oy 0m 29d Mechelen: 51°2'N 4°27'E (Antwerpen) Belgium "Landguard Point, Felixstowe: 51 "56^ 1°19'E (Suffolk) 239km WNW lyOm 13d Vlieland, Friesland: 53°I5'N 4°57'E (Vlieland) The Netherlands

Caught by ringer 28-10-2011 NLA BA13878 First-year



Wyken South West: 52°18'N 0°52'E (Suffolk) 295km WSWOyOm 15d Schiermonnikoog: 53°291M 6° 10'E (Schiermonnikoog) The Netherlands

Caught by ringer 25-10-2012 NLA AX51433 Adult

13- 10-2012

Caught by ringer 22-10-2012

Nightingale LI 42251 Juvenile Caught by ringer X500364

14-06-2011 20-12-2011

Adult Male 14-05-2009 Caught by ringer 13-06-2012

Stonechat X716395 Nestling Male 26-04-2010 Alive 06-05-2012 (colour rings seen) Wheatear X008951 Adult Female Alive (in net or cage)

03-05-2012 08-05-2012

Landguard Point, Felixstowe: 51 "56^ l°19'E (Suffolk) 370km WSW Oy 0m 3d Zwanenwater, Sint Maartensvlotbrug: 52°48TM 4°41'E (Noord-Holland) The Netherlands The Haven, Thorpeness: 52°10'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) 221km WSW 0y0m9d A good year for foreign exchanges for the species including BA65008 recaptured away from the coast during a Farmalnd Bird Survey visit just 15 days after being ringed in The Netherlands. Foxhall, near Ipswich: 52°2"N l°14'E (Suffolk) Barracunto, Kartong: I3°6'N 16°46'W Gambia 4,621km SSW Oy 6m 6d Haddon Hall: 52°4TM 1°I9'E (Suffolk) Sutton Hoo: 52°5'N 1°20'E (Suffolk) 3km 3y 0m 30d LI42251 is the first Suffolk-ringed and 2nd Britain & Irish-ringed Nightingale to be recovered in Gambia. A bird ringed in Essex was recaptured at the same location one day earlier to claim first spot!

near Brickkiln Farm: 52°29'N 0°35'E (Norfolk) Brandon: 52°26'N 0°36'E (Suffolk) 6km S 2y Om lOd

Landguard Point, Felixstowe: 5l°56Tsl 1°19'E (Suffolk) Zoutelande: 51°30"N 3°29'E (Zeeland) The Netherlands 157km ESE0y0m5d The first Suffolk-ringed Wheatear to The Netherlands and only the 4th from the county to be recovered abroad. Two others have been recaptured in Spain and one in Algeria. 186

Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 Dunnock V053001

Full-grown 05-02-2006 Dead (birci of prey) 27-07-2012

Earl Stonham: 52° 117-4 1°5'E (Suffolk) Brewery Farm, Earl Stonham: <\52°1 l'N 1°5'E (Suffolk) 0km 6y 5m 22d

House Sparrow TL90226

Full-grown Female 07-02-2009 Freshly dead 05-08-2012 0km 3y 5m 29d

Brewery Farm, Earl Stonham: c.52°l 1TM 1°5'E (Suffolk) Stonham Aspal, Stowmarket: 52°1 l'N l°5'E (Suffolk)

Tree Sparrow D071688

Dl 13166

Full-grown Freshly dead (in nestbox) Full-grown Caught by ringer (in nestbox)


U-l 1-2012 06-10-2012 15-12-2012

Kilnsea Clays: 53°36'N 0°8'E (Humberside) Waverley Farm, Mildenhall Fen: 52°22'N 0°26'E (Suffolk) 139km S Oy Im ld The Barracks, Little Livermere: 52°18'N 0°44'E (Suffolk) Pitsford Reservoir, Northampton: c.52°19'N 0°53'W (Northamptonshire) 110km W Oy 2m 9d Two more inter-county movements noted as part of the West-Suffolk population studies.

Pied/White Wagtail X202416

17-05-2008 27-07-2012

Brewery Farm, Earl Stonham: c.52°l 1TM 1°5'E (Suffolk) Brewery Farm, Earl Stonham: c.52°l lTM 1°5'E (Suffolk) 0km 4y 2m lOd

Full-grown Male 18-04-2009 Alive 17-06-2012 (colour rings seen)

near Santon Downham: 52°27TM 0°40'E (Norfolk) Wangford Warren: 52°24'N 0°35'E (Suffolk) 8km SW 3y Im 30d Could this bird survive to beat the longevity record of 6 years and 7 months. Look out for those colour rings!

Nestling Dead (birdofprey)

Tree Pipit X697002

Meadow Pipit V582262



Juvenile Caught by


15-09-2007 10-10-2012

First-year Caught by


23-09-2012 13-10-2012

First-year Caught by ringer 0m 7d

11-09-2012 18-09-2012

Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34"E (Suffolk) The Häven, Thorpeness: 52°10'N 1°36'E (Suffolk) 10km NNE 5 y 0 m 2 5 d Balmedie: 2°3"W (Grampian Region) The Häven,Thorpeness: 52°10'N l ^ ó i (Suffolk) 612km SSE Oy 0m 20d Spurn Head: 53°34'N 0°6'E (Humberside) Shingle Street: 52°l'N 1°26'E (Suffolk) 195km SSE Oy A few records illustrating movements within the country. Note V582262 at just over 5 years old.

Chaffinch VI56041

First-year Male 04-04-2006 Dead (bird of prey >27-07-2012


Juvenile Female 04-08-2006 Caught by ringer 01 -11 -2012

Earl Stonham: 52° 1 l'N l ^ i (Suffolk) Brewery Farm, Earl Stonham: c.52°l l'N l°5'E (Suffolk) 0km 6y 3m 23d Minsmere: 52°15'N 1037"E (Suffolk) Minsmere Nature Reserve: 52°15'N 1°37'E (Suffolk) 0km 6y 2m 28d The oldest recorded Chaffinch was 12 years and 12 days old before it collided with a car on Merseyside in 2011.

Brambling NOS ED71014 First-year Male


Revtangen. Klepp: 58°45"N 5°30'E (Rogaland) Norwav


SuffolkRlngingReport 2012 Caught by ringer


First-year Male Caught by ringer

11-12-2010 07-11 -2012

Greenfinch TP84780 Full-grown Caught by ringer

28-02-2012 17-03-2012


Goldfinch L417002 Adult Male 17-04-2011 Caught by ringer 14-01-2012 Y539188

First-year Male 23-04-2012 Caught by ringer 16-12-2012


Full-grown Caught by ringer

04-04-2012 01-12-2012


First-year Female Caught by ringer

07-10-2012 20-10-2012


Adult Female Freshly dead

24-09-2011 09-11-2012

Juvenile Female Caught by ringer

09-07-2011 13-03-2012


Adult Female Caught by ringer

08-11-2009 01 -08-2012


First-year Male Alive (hit glass)

16-04-2010 20-04-2012


Second-year Female 24-05-2010 Caught by ringer 17-04-2012

Siskin Y239676


First-year Female 07-04-2011 Caught by ringer 27-10-2012


First-year Male 04-04-2011 Caught by ringer 11 -05-2012


First-year Female Freshly dead (natural causes)

31-03-2008 13-04-2012

Lakenheath Fen RSPB Reserve: 52027TM 0°31'E (Suffolk) 767km SSW 2y 0m 23d Suffolk's only foreign exchange for the species in 2012 and the first foreign-ringed passerine recorded on the reserve. Brandon: 52°27T\I 0°38'E (Norfolk) Lakenheath Fen RSPB Reserve: 52°27'N 0°31'E (Suffolk) 8km W ly 10m 27d L222247 appears to like overwintering around the WestSuffolk/Norfolk border.

Courtyard Farm, Ringstead: 52056"N 0°33'E (Norfolk) lken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N 1 °34'E (Suffolk) 111 km SE Oy Om 18d

Lydox Mill, Dairsie: 56°20'N 2°57"W (Fife Region) Culford School: c.52°18'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) 506km SSE Oy 8m 28d Calf of Man: c.5403"N 4°49'W (Isle ofMan) Thetford Lodge Farm: c.52°26'N 0°41'E (Suffolk) 408km ESE Oy 7m 23d Lockerbie: c.55°7TM 3°22'W (Dumfries & Galloway) Thetford Lodge Farm: c.52°26"N 0°41'E (Suffolk) 400km SE Oy 7m 27d Kilnsea Clays: 53°36TM 0°8'E (Humberside) Bawdsey Manor: 51 "59^ P24'E (Suffolk) 199km SSE Oy 0m 13d Kilnsea: 53°37'N 0°8'F. (Humberside) Kirton: 52°0TM 1°19'E (Suffolk) 197km SSE ly lm 16d The five individuals travelling the furthest to reach the county in 2012.

Shebster: 58=33^ 3°42'W (Highland Region) Culford School: c.52°18'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) 747km SSE Oy 8m 4d Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Logie Hill, Ballchraggan, near Kildary: 57°45'N 4°5'W (Highland Region) 719km NNW 2y 8m 24d High Lodge, near Brandon: c.52°26'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) Bilbster, Watten: 58°28TM 3° 14W (Highland Region) 714km NNW 2y0m4d High Lodge, near Brandon: c.52°26'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) Logie Hill, Ballchraggan, near Kildary: 57°45'N 4°5'W (Highland Region) 664km NNW ly 10m 24d High Lodge, near Brandon: c.52°26'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) Hertsberge: 51°6"N 3°17'E (West-Vlaanderen) Belgium 234km SE Iy6m20d High Lodge, near Brandon: e.52°26'N 0°40'E (Suffolk) Log, Ana Sira. Sokndal: S ^ H W 6°26'E (Rogaland) Norway 745km NNE ly lm 7d Dunwich: 52°16'N 1°37'E (Suffolk) near Olofstrom: 56°I8'N 14°30'E (Blekinge) Sweden 948km NE 4y 0m 13d 188

Selected Ringing Recoveries for Suffolk in 2012 Included above are the three Suffolk-ringed birds recovered abroad plus some great movements involving birds ringed at High Lodge.

Lesser Redpoll Y546800

First-year Female Caught by ringer


Adult Caught by ringer


First-year Maie Caught by ringer


First-year Male Caught by ringer


First-year Caught by ringer


First-year Caught by ringer

BLB 12660284 First-year Male Caught by ringer

02-04-2012 18-06-2012

Tangham Farm, Boyton: 52°5TM 1°26'E (Suffolk) Melvich: 58°331M 3 = 5 5 ^ (Highland Region) 794km NNW Oy 2m 16d 28-02-2012 Holywell Row: 52022TM 0°31'E (Suffolk) 15-10-2012 Kinloch: 57-0™ 6°17'W (Highland Region) 675km NW Oy 7m 17d 30-12-2010 Lackford Lakes Swt Reserve: c.52°18'N 0°37'E (Suffolk) 22-04-2012 Sheilfoot: 56°45'N 5°50'W (Highland Region) 646km NW l y 3 m 23d 05-11-2011 Orfordness: c.52°5TM 1°34'E (Suffolk) 27-09-2012 Auchenhew Bay, Auchenhew: 55°26'N 5°9'W (Strathclyde) 577km NW Oy 10m 22d 20-09-2012 Copeland Bird Observatory: 54°4I TM 5°32AV (Down) 20-10-2012 Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°3'N 1°27'E (Suffolk) 548km ESE Oy Im Od 19-10-2009 Kessingland: 52°24'N l°43'E (Suffolk) 15-01-2012 Wezembeek-Oppen: SO^ITM 4°29'E (Brabant), Belgium, 257km SE 2y 88d 24-03-2012 20-10-2012

Hockai: 50°29'N 5°59'E (Liege) Belgium Cauldwell Hall Farm, Hollesley: 52°3'N P27-E (Suffolk) 360km WNW Oy 6m 26d The latter represents the only foreign-ringed bird recovered in the county in 2012. In addition to X940186, a further eight Suffolk-ringed birds were recaptured in Belgium.

Common Redpoll Y617426

Adult Male 17-03-2012 Caught by ringer 13-11-2012

Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Kessingland, Lowestoft: 52°24TM 1°43'E (Suffolk) 30km NNE Oy 7m 27d

Common Rosefinch X549872

First-year 20-10-2012 Caught by ringer 01-12-2012

Orfordness: c.52°5'N 1°34'E (Suffolk) Berendrecht: 51°2nM 4°I9'E (Antwerpen) Belgium 207km ESE Oy Im l l d A great recovery record for this scarce species.

Reed Bunting T502428

First-year Male 21-09-2005 Caught by ringer 09-02-2012

Orfordness: c.52°5TM 1°34'E (Suffolk) Iken Marsh, near Iken: 52°9'N 1°34"E (Suffolk) 8km N 6y 4m I9d Note the age of this male. The longevity record stands at 9 years, 11 months and 18 days.


Suffolk Bird Report 2012



SUFFOLK NATURALISTS' SOCIETY Founded in 1929 by Claude Morley (1874-1951), the Suffolk Naturalists' Society pioneered the study and recording of the County's flora, fauna and geology, to promote a wider interest in natural history. Recording the natural history of Suffolk is still one of the Society's primary objects, and members' observations are fed to a network of specialist recorders for possible publication, and deposited in the Suffolk Biological Records Centre, jointly managed with Ipswich Museums. Suffolk Natural History, a review of the County's wildlife, and Suffolk Birds, the County bird report, are two high quality annual publications issued free to members. The Society also publishes a quarterly newsletter and organises an interesting programme of field excursions and winter lectures at venues throughout the County. The Suffolk Naturalists' Society offers a joint membership with the Suffolk Ornithologists' Group at a reduced subscription. This entitles joint members to receive literature and attend the meetings of both organisations. If you are not yet a member of the Society but would like to join, contact Mrs J. Hardingham, c/o The Museum, High Street, Ipswich IP1 3QH. M E M B E R S H I P CATEGORIES: Individual Family Corporate

SNS £15 £17 £17

Joint membership SNS/SOG £28 £32

CONTENTS Page Editorial: Nick Mason Review of scarce and rare birds in Suffolk in 2012: Lee Woods Carlton and Oulton Marshes Nature Reserve, 2012/13: Matthew Gooch

5 7 12

A re-establishing Common Buzzard population in north-east Suffolk, 2006-2012: P.J.Dare Autumn immigration of Great Cormorants in north Suffolk: P.J.Dare

15 20

Lesser Black-backed Gull and Herring Gull breeding colonies in Suffolk: Steve Piotrowski


Progress Report on breeding Dartford Warblers on Upper Hollesley, Lower Hollesley and Sutton Commons: Mick Wright Suffolk's first Spanish Sparrow: John Richardson and Nigel Odin

31 34

Hornemann's Arctic Redpoll atAldeburgh, 8th-19th December 2012 - first, of this race for Suffolk: Brian Small and Lee Woods Black-winged Stilts at Minsmere: Dave Fairhurst

36 38

The 2012 Suffolk Bird Report Introduction


Systematic List




List of Contributors




Earliest and Latest Dates of Summer Migrants


A Guide to Recording Birds in Suffolk


Rare Birds in Suffolk 2012: David Walsh


Suffolk Ringing Report 2012: Simon Evans




Suffolk Birds 2012 Part 2  

Volume 62 Systematic List

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