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Post Info TOPIC: Norfolk


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RE: Norfolk


'Oldham Birders' 17- 20/05/2024 cont.

17/05
After checking in to our usual accommodation and a nice pub meal we headed out for the evening into Thetford Forest. Out regular location has inevitably become somewhat overgrown with birch, gorse etc, but we found a new spot nearby with more suitable habitat and were soon watching our targets of Tree Pipit and Wood Lark. While we were watching the latter and scanning for the first Cuckoo of the trip, we were surprised to hear some very early churring coming from the woodland edge. We headed up to the path in that area just as a male Nightjar dropped out of the canopy and began a flight display. It was joined by a female both of them showing very well in the remaining daylight. More birds began churring then took to the wing, with 4 flying together over a male churring from the ground. One of the birds broke off and flew off along the woodland edge, prompting two more birds to rise from the ground further away. We were then treated to the best display any of us could remember, with good views of perched churring birds and a doppler effect when two were churring at each other from adjacent trees. As we walked out at least three birds were hawking at tree top height at the far end of the area, so we reckoned at around 8 birds in total.

18/05
After decent weather on the Friday, Saturday was dull and damp when we set off for Weeting Heath. At least it meant we didn't have to deal with a heat haze as we viewed the Stone Curlew there, which were nicely active. We chatted to the wardens as we watched them unpack the moth trap and confirmed our estimates of adults and chicks. 10 birds in all. Several common woodland species were seen from the woodland walk hide and a Spotted Flycatcher heard briefly.

From here we headed to Snettisham, where the continuing cold and damp failed to deter a couple of Nightingales in the surviving scrub. As we headed back towards the car park, Riggers picked up the purring of a Turtle Dove so we made our way round to investigate, finding the bird low down behind gorse bushes. We moved on to where one of the Nightingales was still singing away and were lucky enough to see it move from the centre of one large bush to another. On our way back to the car a Lesser Whitethroat rattled a few times and again showed briefly as it skulked about.

On to Titchwell with a quick stop to tick off Hunstanton's Fulmars. Despite the continuing cold, damp breeze we had reasonable views of Bearded Tits and another brief Cetti's flyby along with a Great Egret as we made our way out to the beach . The only waders there were a group of Sanderling, ticked off along with passing Gannets and Sandwich Terns. A couple of smart summer plumage Grey Plovers were on the most seaward lagoon. The only birds on note from the concrete monstrosity were a couple each of Mediterranean and Little Gulls and a Red Kite.

Having made arrangements for our evening meal, we headed down to Lakenheath, where it was sunnier if not that much warmer. A walk round the reserve added Hobby, Sand Martin and Kingfisher to the list, Riggers had two brief glimpses of a Bittern and we all heard it and the Common Cranes that passed unseen west along the river before we could get up onto the embankment. Another good pub meal and so to bed.

19/05
We decided not to do our usual Sunday trip to Minsmere and try to find Common Cranes in North Norfolk; so of course two turned up on the South Levels! We started Sunday on Kelling Heath with more good views of Wood Lark and then located a couple of Dartford Warblers, to the intermittent purring of two Turtle Doves and the odd hoot from the local private railway. On to Clay for a walk up the East Bank with more views of Bearded Tits, Egyptian Geese, and from the beach a party of 6 Common Scoter.

South to Swanton Novers, where we were too early for Honey Buzzards but had both Gos- and Sparrowhawks. News of a Red-backed Shrike took us to Horsey, where we were lucky enough to see the bird for at least long enough for us all to get on it before it dropped back into brambles and disappeared again for hours. Two Whimbrel over were an unexpected bonus. An early evening pub meal gave us time to go looking for a reported Pectoral Sandpiper, but we had difficulty finding the location let alone the bird! A calling Water Rail was the best we could do.hmm

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October 14-18.

Highlights:

Red Kites
Merlin 1
Marsh Harrier 5 at once, at Titchwell.

Little Stint 1
Spotted Redshank 1
Curlew Sandpiper 1
Long-billed Dowitcher 1 at Cley.

Whooper Swan 1
DB Brent Geese 20+

Great Egret 1
Cattle Egret 3

Red-throated Diver 1
Common Scoters
Razorbills
Great Crested Grebes
Eiders

Yellow-browed Warbler 1 at Titchwell.
Brambling 1 at Holme.
Chiffchaff 1
Bearded Tit 20+ at Titchwell.

91 species.

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Phil Greenwood


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Sorry for the late post. I have had IT problems. Got back 3 weeks ago. We covered the North Norfolk coast between Cromer and Titchwell. We saw 83 birds of which 36 were new for the year
Little Grebe
Redshank
Shag
Slandering
Turnstone
Whimbrel
Great White Egret
Spoonbill
Ringed Plover
Green Sandpiper
Dunlin
Avocet
Bar Tailed Godwit
Black Tailed Godwit
Curlew Sandpiper
Spotted Redshank
Wigeon
Wood Sandpiper
Twite
Grey Plover
Greenshank
Ruff
Golden Plover
Gannet
Arctic Skua
Long Tailed Skua
Bearded Reedling
Cackling Goose
Pochard
Greater Scaup
Pintail
Little Ringed Plover
Green Woodpecker
Common Snipe

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b. hooley


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Just returned from East Runton near Cromer on the North Norfolk coast.Ivisited Titchwell, Cley,
Salthouse,Stiffkey,Blakeney,Morston,Sheringham and Wells next the sea.I saw ninety six species.
The best birds as follows.
Mediterranean gull.
Barnacle Goose
Curlew
Marsh Harrier
Bearded Reedling
Water Pipit
Green Sandpiper
Ruff
Pintail
Greenshank
Tree Pipit
Red Kite
Pink Footed Goose
Arctic Skua
Turnstone
Little Stint
Bar Tailed Godwit
Curlew Sandpiper
Spoonbill
Wheatear
White Fronted Goose
White Wagtail
Greenshank
Golden Plover
Dunlin
Sanderling
Grey plover

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b. hooley


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Saturday 9th, Sunday 10th July

Just back from an enjoyable couple of days in Norfolk, some stunning birds and nice weather, very enjoyable. Travelled down on Friday night, Saturday began at the Bee-eater watchpoint at Trimingham. We saw 3 adult birds, they were doing nest changeovers and then flying off in the main, but we had good views of one picking off prey from the overhead wires.
Then Swanton Novers, back on the radar for Honey Buzzards this year after some time out of the limelight. After 2 hours there we had seen a nice Goshawk but no Honeys, we'd missed a good view by 10 minutes apparently. From there we headed to Snettisham, and my first visit to this iconic location. We headed for the pools and got on a singing Turtle Dove right away, which was lovely. We had 2 later that flew up to the fence on the beach side, stunning views.
The main sighting on the pools was a White-rumped Sandpiper, which was never close but was identifiable.
From there we walked out north towards Wild Ken Hill, which was excellent. Hunting Barn Owl and Marsh Harrier were conceivably the birds featured on Springwatch. No sign of the recent Great Reed Warbler, we thought the 8th July report was probably bogus, but we dug out some nice things like Yellow Wagtail and Lesser Whitethroat and it was also brilliant to find 2 more Turtle Doves in this area, with another singer.
We headed inland to some accommodation at Swaffham Heath, in the middle of nowhere really, and heard Nightjar from our little outdoor seating area, before half-light glimpses of Barn and Tawny Owl literally with beverages in our hands! Very nice. The Barn Owl was hunting in a field across the road when we left in the morning.
The first stop was Lynford Arboretum, where we failed dismally to find any Firecrests but enjoyed great views of Siskins and Spotted Flycatchers as some consolation. Then Weeting Heath, where an adult Stone Curlew showed beautifully and a second bird sat quietly, possibly a juvenile we thought, but unable to confirm.
Final stops were on the fens in Cambs, then home as the thermometer was hitting 30 degrees and we were pegging out badly! Great trip though, so much diversity in what you can go to see and/or find yourself

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Mike Chorley wrote:

Good start to day 2 of our weekend with a trip to a frosty Cantley Marshes. A couple of 1000+ flocks respectively of Pink footed and Eurasian(Russian) White-fronted Geese, outnumbered by the flocks of Lapwing. We failed to find any Bean Geese among them, but reports have apparently been thin on the ground this year. No Wigeon either, which are often present in large numbers.

From here we headed into Great Yarmouth were one Mediterranean Gull put in a brief appearance at our regular bread-lobbing ceremony. A couple of the Black-headed Gulls had red Darvics. Mr Rayner may be able to oblige with details later.

We then moved over the border into Suffolk (see separate thread) before heading back up to Hickling for the roost at Stubb Mill, ticking off a Barn Owl with prey en route. Probably the quietest session we've had there with no Cranes seen on the ground and just one fly past from a family party of 2 adults and 2 juveniles. Three more birds were seen to fly in very distantly in the gloom just before we left. Numbers of Marsh Harriers were very low (6 birds in the air at once was our maximum) and probably no more than a dozen fly-ins to join the birds already there when we arrived. There was a probable male Hen Harrier distantly in the gloom later on, but the highlights were a smart Water Pipit perched up quite close in to the viewing area and a couple of Woodcock which flew in low over the viewing platform as we were getting ready to leave......as predicted by the birder leaving just before us.





Shockingly poor record shot of Water Pipit

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Mike Chorley wrote:

A dull day weather-wise, which was only occasionally brightened by the birding.

Headed to Cley first, ticking off Red-legged Partridge on route. Walked out along the East Bank, hearing Cetti's Warbler and a suggestion of Bearded Tits "pinging". A first viewing of Arnold's Marsh produced Black-tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Grey and Golden Plovers and Redshank. We had good views of a Kingfisher at the sluice, then headed onto the shingle to sea-watch. As we were scoping Red-throated Divers, Karen F, just behind us, spotted the Iceland Gull flying past! It headed down towards Cley Eye and some fishermen, then turned back east along the beach past us and the seal carcass it has been feeding on. Tipped of by a guy who had been photographing it, we followed it for the 3 Snow Buntings in the area, and nearly walked past them, so unconcerned were they. While watching them we noticed that the Iceland Gull, which seems to have an injured foot, was now on Arnold's, along with Ringed Plover and Oystercatcher.

We then moved down to Cley Eye to sift through the large flocks of Dark-bellied Brent and Pink-footed Geese, in the hopes of finding the 2 Tundra Bean Geese. the Barnacle Goose or any Black Brandt. John R located the middle one fairly quickly but we had no luck with the rest.

Lady Anne's Drive was quiet in terms of birds but heaving with people so we decided to pass on the Shore Larks there and continue westwards. Holkham Fresh Marsh was equally quite, with only one distant large flock of White-fronted Geese and a perched Red Kite to provide any interest. Chosely Drying Barns now seems to be the centre of a pig farm, so with no gull flock to check for possible Caspians (biggrin) and only 1 Brambling among the finches in the untrimmed sections of hedge we headed to an equally quiet Thornham Harbour for a quick lunch before moving on again to Hunstanton to check out the sea there. Half a dozen Red-breasted Mergansers, the same number of pairs of Fulmar, some Bar-tailed Godwits and a good number of Sanderling boosted numbers for the day.

We headed back to Titchwell where the bund in the middle of the freshwater lagoon held uncounted numbers of Golden Plover. We had been commenting that we had seen very few (possibly 2!) since the start of the weekend and it now became obvious why. They're all at Titchwell! Among the usual species of waders and waterfowl we managed to find 1 Spotted Redshank, Ruff and at least 4 Avocet. The Harrier roost was as quiet as the one at Stubb Mill the night before, without even the possibility of a Hen Harrier, but 2 or 3 Great Egrets were flying back and forth and the combined aerobatics of a small Starling murmuration, the Golden Plovers and the Lapwings provided a distraction. Around 18 Woodcock came out of the roost at dusk.





More record shots



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A dull day weather-wise, which was only occasionally brightened by the birding.

Headed to Cley first, ticking off Red-legged Partridge on route. Walked out along the East Bank, hearing Cetti's Warbler and a suggestion of Bearded Tits "pinging". A first viewing of Arnold's Marsh produced Black-tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Grey and Golden Plovers and Redshank. We had good views of a Kingfisher at the sluice, then headed onto the shingle to sea-watch. As we were scoping Red-throated Divers, Karen F, just behind us, spotted the Iceland Gull flying past! It headed down towards Cley Eye and some fishermen, then turned back east along the beach past us and the seal carcass it has been feeding on. Tipped of by a guy who had been photographing it, we followed it for the 3 Snow Buntings in the area, and nearly walked past them, so unconcerned were they. While watching them we noticed that the Iceland Gull, which seems to have an injured foot, was now on Arnold's, along with Ringed Plover and Oystercatcher.

We then moved down to Cley Eye to sift through the large flocks of Dark-bellied Brent and Pink-footed Geese, in the hopes of finding the 2 Tundra Bean Geese. the Barnacle Goose or any Black Brandt. John R located the middle one fairly quickly but we had no luck with the rest.

Lady Anne's Drive was quiet in terms of birds but heaving with people so we decided to pass on the Shore Larks there and continue westwards. Holkham Fresh Marsh was equally quite, with only one distant large flock of White-fronted Geese and a perched Red Kite to provide any interest. Chosely Drying Barns now seems to be the centre of a pig farm, so with no gull flock to check for possible Caspians (biggrin) and only 1 Brambling among the finches in the untrimmed sections of hedge we headed to an equally quiet Thornham Harbour for a quick lunch before moving on again to Hunstanton to check out the sea there. Half a dozen Red-breasted Mergansers, the same number of pairs of Fulmar, some Bar-tailed Godwits and a good number of Sanderling boosted numbers for the day.

We headed back to Titchwell where the bund in the middle of the freshwater lagoon held uncounted numbers of Golden Plover. We had been commenting that we had seen very few (possibly 2!) since the start of the weekend and it now became obvious why. They're all at Titchwell! Among the usual species of waders and waterfowl we managed to find 1 Spotted Redshank, Ruff and at least 4 Avocet. The Harrier roost was as quiet as the one at Stubb Mill the night before, without even the possibility of a Hen Harrier, but 2 or 3 Great Egrets were flying back and forth and the combined aerobatics of a small Starling murmuration, the Golden Plovers and the Lapwings provided a distraction. Around 18 Woodcock came out of the roost at dusk.

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Spent the weekend at Snettisham RSPB. My first ever visit. The tides werent high enough for the spectacular wader roosts but there was still an excellent display with huge flocks of all species over the Wash. There were three Marsh Harriers over the marsh and plenty of wildfowl on the pools and the estuary. Whilst there was nothing out of the ordinary species wise it was still a really enjoyable couple of days and would highly recommend a visit.

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Good start to day 2 of our weekend with a trip to a frosty Cantley Marshes. A couple of 1000+ flocks respectively of Pink footed and Eurasian(Russian) White-fronted Geese, outnumbered by the flocks of Lapwing. We failed to find any Bean Geese among them, but reports have apparently been thin on the ground this year. No Wigeon either, which are often present in large numbers.

From here we headed into Great Yarmouth were one Mediterranean Gull put in a brief appearance at our regular bread-lobbing ceremony. A couple of the Black-headed Gulls had red Darvics. Mr Rayner may be able to oblige with details later.

We then moved over the border into Suffolk (see separate thread) before heading back up to Hickling for the roost at Stubb Mill, ticking off a Barn Owl with prey en route. Probably the quietest session we've had there with no Cranes seen on the ground and just one fly past from a family party of 2 adults and 2 juveniles. Three more birds were seen to fly in very distantly in the gloom just before we left. Numbers of Marsh Harriers were very low (6 birds in the air at once was our maximum) and probably no more than a dozen fly-ins to join the birds already there when we arrived. There was a probable male Hen Harrier distantly in the gloom later on, but the highlights were a smart Water Pipit perched up quite close in to the viewing area and a couple of Woodcock which flew in low over the viewing platform as we were getting ready to leave......as predicted by the birder leaving just before us.



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Oldham Birders' East Anglian weekend.

After our Cambs dip, spirits were restored first at Welney and then Lynford Arboretum.

At Welney there were few Whooper Swans around the Main hide, but Black-tailed Godwits were there in good numbers, Pintail added to trip and year lists and Riggers discovered the Bean Geese lurking behind a line of reeds just obscured from the hides. More Whooper Swans were north of the hides, with a pair of Bewick Swans visible from the Friends Hide. The usual scrum of Pochard, a Chiffchaff, Tree Sparrow, assorted commoner water birds and waders, several Marsh Harriers and at least 2 Cattle Egrets (in with the sheep) all noted.

The trip to Lynford provided a bonus bird when a stop to look at some mammals, produced a Great Egret strolling along the ditch behind them.


Arriving at Lynford we were given directions to a group of C15 Hawfinch feeding on the ground in the paddock but they had flown up by the time we got there and we had to content ourselves wit the usual treetop views. On our way back to the car park a feeding/bathing station yielded bonuses when John R picked up a possible, then confirmed, Marsh Tit, Riggers found a Brambling among the Yellowhammers and Chaffinches and Karen spotted a Firecrest bathing in the concrete lined pool. All in all a good start with 75+species seen and heard.


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sI have just returned from a 2 weeks holiday in North Norfolk based at East Runton.
I visited Titchwell,Cley, Stiffkey marshes,Blakeney,Salthouse Marshes, Wells and Morston Quay.
I saw 103 different species. The best of which follow.
Goshawk
Green Woodpecker
Shag
Whooper Swan
Pink Footed Goose
Barnacle Goose
Shelduck
Common Buzzard
Bar Tailed Godwit
Raven
Rook
Arctic Skua
Wheatear
Turnstone
Marsh Harrier
Whimbrel
Curlew
Greenshank
Black Tailed Gogwit
Avocet
Bearded Reedling
Pectoral Sandpiper
Twite
Gannet
Little Stint
Little Ringed plover
Great Skua
Sandwich tern
Great White Egret
Spoonbill
Red Kite
Water Pipit
Peregrine Falcon
Ruff
redshank
Knot
Wood Sandpiper
Dunlin
Caspian Gull
Grey Partridge
Red Legged Partridge
Hen Harrier
Siskin
Wryneck
Stonechat

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Blakeney Point in Norfolk finally beats me! 4th September 2021

   You can imagine when a very rare bird turns up in Norfolk you always think, Hope its not on Blakeney Point The walk from Cley beach carpark along the shingle to the end is around 3.5 miles and many a fine man has failed even to do it. The bird in question was a Sykess Warbler which would usually be on its way to wintering grounds in India by now. The bird was only about half way along the point when it was first found on Friday afternoon and had been seen very well. A trip was planned with Greater Bolton`s own Phil R and my two twitching friends from Huddersfield Dave W & Rob D. Leaving Yorkshire at around 4-45am and arriving at Cley around 7-45am after a reasonable run down the A1 then A17, only one thing was missing? No news on the bird had been received as we started to walk along the shingle, quite a few other birders were seen heading back, mostly with sad faces, but it was a lovely bright sunny morning! We joined in the search for the bird, but after an hour it was obvious the bird had flown. Between us on the sea we managed to find: - Black Tern, Red throated Diver, 5 Arctic Skua`s, Gannet`s, Common Scoter and lots of feeding tern`s. On the walk back a Common Crane was seen, that later landed on Cley reserve. A Hobby also entertained us as it chased insect prey around. This was the first time that I can remember going to see a rare bird at Blakeney Point and not seeing it, had to happen sometime!

   A walk along the east bank at Cley marshes revealed a close Whinchat and lots of waders feeding up before heading along on their migration. A Barred Warbler had been found at Burnham Overy early this morning, but no more news had been heard, so we drove past it and guess what? It was found again just as we entered Snettisham!  News of a juvenile Dotterel had us walking another mile and a half to see this bird, surely this bird would stay for us? A few birders on the way down told us that the bird was still present. After waiting patiently for half an hour and looking at the point where the bird had been last seen, we abandoned the search. A Peregrine Falcon flew over us and out into the Wash as it selected its evening meal from amongst the large amounts of waders present. Two Turtle Doves sat enjoying the afternoon sunshine brightened up a fairly sombre mood amongst us all. We left Norfolk and called at The Farm Café on the A17 and enjoyed a lovely evening meal. A long day ended with me reaching home by 8-15pm, a great day out nevertheless with good birding mates.

Dave O.   



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Just back from a week's holiday in Norfolk, staying in a holiday cottage at Glandford, a couple of miles south of Cley. The weather was sunny throughout, around 10 or 11 deg c most days and with a cool easterly or north easterly wind.

Not a birding holiday, as such, but we did plenty of walking around Cley and Salthouse Marshes, I visited Kelling Heath on three occasions and, prior to leaving for home yesterday, we paid a fleeting visit to Titchwell RSPB Reseve, where we walked down the West Bank to the sea and back. We also took a boat trip to Blakeney Point to see the seal colony, which allowed some birding. Did a little bit of birding in other general areas close to Glandford and Cley.

We didn't chase any rarities, just recorded what we saw on our walks. There was a Bluethroat at Titchwell for a couple of days around the 17th April, one to two Cranes passed through the area, as did two or three Ospreys. One, possibly two Wrynecks were in the Cley area for a few days, the main one in private gardens.

The hides at both Cley and Titchwell were obviously closed due to the pandemic but we were able to walk freely around most of the two reserves. Ninety four species were recorded, of note :-

Dark-bellied Brent Goose
Egyptian Goose
Common Eider
Red-legged Partridge
Common Cuckoo
Pied Avocet
Grey Plover
Ringed Plover
Little Ringed Plover
Bar-tailed Godwit
Black-tailed Godwit
Ruddy Turnstone
Red Knot
Ruff
Sanderling
Dunlin
Common Snipe
Mediterranean Gull
Common Tern
Sandwich Tern
Great Egret
Little Egret
Marsh Harrier
Red Kite
Buzzard
Tawny Owl
Great Spotted Woodpecker
Green Woodpecker
Woodlark
Bearded Tit
Sedge Warbler
Reed Warbler
Sand Martin
Cetti's Warbler
Dartford Warbler
Ring Ouzel
Lesser Redpoll
Yellowhammer

A few photos attached of Dartford warbler and Ring Ouzel



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 Rufous Bush Chat, Stiffkey, Norfolk 17th October 2020

  When a bird as rare as a Rufous Bush Chat (last one 40 years ago) turns up you have to go see it, right? Awakening from my slumbers at 7-30am on a rainy Saturday morning could not have been more different to what was in store for me on that morning. I decided to check out any bird news whilst having my customary brew and got a bit of a shock, Rufous Bush Chat at Stiffkey, Norfolk I knew what my birding chums werent doing, so knowing that Kevin C would go, and I gave him a call. He was up for it and his wife Dorothy was already making his sandwiches, then the bird disappeared onto the saltmarsh, it was found soon after and at 10-30am we left a rainy Castleton in my car. Our lovely network of motorways came up trumps again with a 20 minute delay before we even got 2 junctions. The journey down the A1 was quite good but as we got onto the A17 the regular wagons, agricultural vehicles welcomed us. News that the bird was still present really helped and it had stopped raining. We cut inland from Fakenham and arrived at Stiffkey around 2-50pm and there were lots of cars parked on the coast road and down Green Lane towards the saltmarsh. We managed to park and Kevin C put his wellies on, wise chap I thought, it was really muddy and slippy out there as we negotiated our way to the crowd of around 60 birders. A few Torvill and Dean impressions later and we were both watching the Rufous Bush Chat. The bird sat out sunning itself on the suaeda and all the many identification features were seen and enjoyed as it ran along catching insects to eat. At this point I would like to add that all the birders present kept a good distance apart and most wore protective masks whilst watching the bird. It also helped that seven policemen had been stationed behind the crowd to remind them about their duty to socially distance etc. Other birds seen: Dark bellied Brent Geese, Great White and Little Egret, Skylark, Curlew, Kestrel. We both really enjoyed watching this mega-rarity and it was well worth the effort to come and see it.

   A trip along the coast to Holme next the Sea to try to see the three Red flanked Bluetails that had been seen there was our next stop. We parked on a muddy field and were directed onto the golf course as around 30 birders had assembled and were watching the pines. Eventually two Red flanked Bluetails appeared, what nice birds to end our birding day. No trip to Norfolk can be complete without a call at The Farm roadside café, near Holbeach on the A17 for something to eat. We left there around 6-40pm and arrived back at home at 9-20pm, 400 mile round trip, what a bird!

Dave O.

 



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Just returned from a fortnight on the North Norfolk coast
based at East Runton. I visited Cley, Titchwell and Holme
nature reserves also Salthouse Marshes and Stiffkey outmarsh.
plus a few inland sites. I saw 102 birds of which 29 were new
for the year as follows.
Red Grouse seen on the way over the Pennines on the way to
the M1.
Corncrake walking across the road at Kelling.
Gannet
Kittiwake
Caspian Gull
Goshawk
Barnacle Goose
Brown Shrike (lifer).(Thanks Ian)
Marsh Harrier
Arctic Skua
Turnstone
Brent Goose (pale bellied)
Yellow Browed Warbler
Knot
Brent Goose(dark bellied)
Sanderling
Bearded Reedling
Twite
Great White Egret
Spotted Redshank
Little Stint
Ruff
Avocet
Greenshank
Hobby
Dunlin
Shag
Grey Plover
Red kite
The birds i dipped on were Spoonbill at Cley.Iwas at Titchwell
when they were at Titchwell Iwas at Cley.Sods law .The other
was a yellow breasted bunting at Wells

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27/01/2020

The tailback from a serious accident on the A17 near Sutton Bridge meant a later than planned arrival home for some of us and an early end to the birding weekend for others. Minor inconveniences compared to what those involved in the accident must have endured.

The day had started well earlier with another visit to the barn between Acle and Billockby (can't wait to see what the auto-correct makes of that last one biggrin) where c14 Common Cranes were flying and feeding in the area, several giving good views both on the ground and in flight. Highlight, though, was a ring-tailed Hen Harrier which suddenly popped over the reeds and settled at the far end of the next field, giving cracking views. We also had minima of 1 Kestrel, 3 Common Buzzards and 4 Marsh Harriers (including 2 males) active in the area. The more distant male at one point produced a vertical dive that would have been really spectacular at close quarters. C1000 Lapwings were also feeding in the area.

The arrival of rain and the end of rush hour provided the impetus for us to set off home, with plans for further birding along the way, curtailed by the aforementioned accident. In the end we added a few more common species to give us a comparatively modest trip total of 105 seen and 3 heard. Given that we connected with species missed last year such as Rough-legged Buzzard, Waxwing, Slavonian Grebe and White-fronted Goose it will be interesting to see which species are missing from this year's list.

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A crisp sunny Sunday morning saw us head off to do a tour of The Broads to pick up some waterfowl ticks. We got lucky at Filby Broad, where we found a Long-tailed Duck (probably re-located from Ormesby Broad via the interlocking waters) to go with the Red-necked Grebe we knew was there. Both were distant from the fishing platforms, at the west end of the Broad, unlike the Slavonian Grebe at Wroxham Broad which was so confiding it could have been photographed with a mobile phone well enough to identify the fish it caught in the shallows.

After a brief visit to Salthouse Parish Church to see another Waxwing we headed on to Cley's East Bank. Bearded Tits were seen/heard, Little Egret and various commoner species of waterfowl and waders added to trip and year lists and a couple of Red-throated Divers and a possible Guillemot were on the sea, but the highlight was definitely the Otter swimming west along the main drain from Arnold's Marsh, making forays into the reedy edges. A brief stop at the Visitor Centre for 'rest and relaxation' -including some retail therapybiggrin- , then we headed on towards our final destination at Titchwell. Next stop was a gate just to the west of Wells, where a couple were already watching raptors over Wells Wood. Initially we had a Common Buzzard and a Red Kite, then a second Kite appeared. After some interaction the Buzzard dropped to the floor, the Kites drifted off and so did the couple, remarking that they had also seen a paler Buzzard just as they arrived. A few minutes later Riggers spotted another, hovering Buzzard. This proved to be the paler Rough-legged Buzzard we had been hoping for. As the Rough-legged dropped the Common came up, showing that it was very much darker, and the two changed stations. From here we continued to Thornham, where there were at least 10 Twite mixed into the Linnet flock, which also included the partially white Linnet initially claimed as a Snow Bunting recently. We could see why.

It was getting cloudy and windy so we decided to leave Chosely barns for another time and headed straight for Titchwell. Things were fairly quiet here, as the rain and wind strengthened, with no sign of either Spotted Redshank or Water Pipit (both of which had been recorded earlier in the day). A number of commoner species were again added to trip/year lists and a sojourn in the rather more sparsely furnished Fen Hide brought tallies of C20 each of Marsh Harrier and Little Egret going to roost. A Cetti's Warbler was seen/heard and a couple of Woodcock roded.

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Headed off to Great Yarmouth first thing for our traditional bread-chucking ceremony. Among the horde of Black-headed Gulls were a smattering of larger gulls, mostly Herring, with one Great Black-backed Gull keeping its' distance and two, possibly three Mediterranean Gulls popping up briefly. Sliced White processed seems to have lost its' attraction for them, compared to earlier years. Another Mediterranean Gull was seen among a group of Black-headed Gulls 'paddling' for worms on a central reservation as we headed out of county to tick Purple Sandpiper and Turnstone at Lowestoft before heading back north across the boundary.

A quick scan 'behind the barn' produced 5 Common Cranes and 3 Marsh Harriers as we headed round to our eventual destination of Stubb's Mill. Calling in at Ludham, we found 28 Bewick's Swans among the flock of Whooper Swans on the disused airfield. Twenty six Egyptian Geese were also here. Heading on, we had a couple of scans of the Pink-footed Goose flock at Somerton, which produced several Tundra Bean Geese and at least two Eurasian White-fronted Geese. A group of forty Snow Buntings were on the beach at Winterton Dunes, including one showy male. At the Mill visibility was a little poor due to the overcast, but we managed at least one Barn Owl, an over-wintering Chiffchaff and two Common Cranes which eventually showed well as they fed along the edge of a ditch. Two trios of over-flying Cranes and a party of seven Bewick's Swans together with c40 Marsh Harriers completed the items of interest. A further ten Cranes flew over the road back from the Mill and at least two Woodcock were active in the area. After the usual Saturday night 'whale and chips' from our favourite Norfolk chippy we headed back to our digs for an early night

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A detour to avoid traffic congestion meant we missed the early showing of the Eastern Yellow Wagtail on Ringstead Road, so headed along the track to another favoured muck heap. No sign of the bird for a couple of hours but the contest between a Red Kite and a couple of Carrion Crows provided some distractions before we picked the bird up from it's flight call as it flew from beyond the trees to the left high towards Ringstead Road, where other birders located it in a foraging party of Pied Wagtails. These all made retreats into the hedge from time to time, but generally the bird showed well most of the time and was easily re-locatable one the very flighty group had re-settled. Maybe sharing a freshly ploughed field with a large flock of Common Gulls made them more wary.

A full complement of five birders, good views of a smart looking bird and lunch all having been achieved, we set of for The Owl and Hawk Trust property at Sculthorpe Moor, where the single Waxwing was visible from the car park as we arrived. Logistics dictated we move on and after a pitstop en route we arrived at a rather quiet Lynford Arboretum. Numbers of finches seemed much lower than in previous years with no flocks of Brambling or Siskin and only a couple of Hawfinch, although one did give good views in a couple of locations. A Barn Owl seen from one of the cars and a selection of commoner species brought our total for this slightly grey day to 51 seen and 2 heard, so we headed of across county to our accommodation for the weekend.

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The Alaskan Wagtail still near Ringstead at lunchtime today. A few cropped images attached. 

70 Snow Bunting, 3 Velvet Scoter, 200 Linnet, Great White Egret, Red Breasted Merganser, 2 Red Kite, 200 Brent Geese at Holkolm 



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Thompson Common - Thompson Water - Cranberry Wood - Breckles Heath (all part of 'Pingo' Trail - 10 miles north of Thetford).

14th September 2019: 10:00 - 15:30 hrs. All singles unless specified.

Marsh Harrier
Hobby
Buzzard x 2
Kingfisher
Little Egret
Grey Heron x 3
Blackcap
Goldcrest
Willow Tit
Long Tailed Tit x 7
Wren x 3
Robin x 4
Blue Tit x 10
Great Tit
Moorhen x 2
Coot x 20
Mute Swans x 10
Blackbird x 3
Mallard x 40

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Spent today's leg of our East Anglian weekend entirely in Norfolk.

Much colder this morning with large areas of some Broads and most of the pools at Cley frozen over, so some of the birds we'd hoped to see had moved on or only emerged after we had. Even the Glaucous Gull had finished its' breakfast of raw seal and headed east along the coast. After a short shopping trip we headed to Holkham and had better luck. The flock of Snow Buntings was mobile around the roped off area, we located the Dartford Warbler in the nearby sea-buckthorn and in return were put onto the Shorelarks feeding on the unfenced area, then as we were heading back to the car a flock of about 80 Twite flew through towards the dunes. Among the flocks of Brent and Pink-footed Geese there were 3 Grey Partridge but unfortunately the Russian White-fronts were feeding in an area close to the road with no safe parking or viewing. The news of the Rough-legged Buzzard being at Chosely Barns again this afternoon didn't come on until later so we headed to an equally frozen Titchwell and added another 12 species to today's list including Kingfisher and Cetti's Warbler at Fen Hide, Red-necked Grebe on the sea and a ring-tailed Hen Harrier coming into the roost as the full Super Moon climbed through a lavender and mauve dusk. Another interesting bit of cross-country routing on the satnav failed to turn up any Tawny Owls this year - but Mr Blessed did his bestbiggrin

With our combined total now on 117 seen (plus Crossbill & Bearded Tit heard) let's see what tomorrow brings apart from frost!

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Christaylor wrote:

Buckenham Marshes this morning;
6 Taiga Bean Geese. Lifer for us. First in the country apparently!





Hi Chris, first in the country?
Id double check that information mate, its incorrect.
Cheers
Rob

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Buckenham Marshes this morning; 6 Taiga Bean Geese. Lifer for us. First in the country apparently!

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Sunday 4th November 2018.

Situations fell right and I decided on Saturday night that a flying visit to Norfolk on Sunday for some Lifers was in order if I stuck to time limits at each location. Good decision!

Salthouse.
- Stejneger's Stonechat (probable / awaiting DNA confirmatio) - probable Lifer
Showing brilliantly on arrival for the surprisingly few birders present. It was difficult to get a good record shot with my camera as it was on a thin wooden post in the reeds on Meadow Lane marsh, then it was on a 'reed' and swaying in the wind. Camera kept focusing on the bushes and scenery behind it. Managed some shots and a few digiscoped images.
Then it flew behind the reeds to our right and didn't show for a short while then kept appearing briefly with a Robin. What a cracking little bird and from what one birder was saying it's only a matter of time before it's identity is confirmed (think it was the person who collected the feces).
- also 1 Red Kite (near Fakenham)

Sheringham.
- King Eider (2nd W eclipse drake) - Lifer
10 minute drive from Salthouse and soon I was parking up near the seafront of the town and walking the hilly coastal path to the RNLI station lookout point.
I could see some birders were on the beach at the tides edge and it got me wondering if I'd made the right decision, but I asked a birder on his way back down and he confirmed what I suspected, far better views from the coast path as the sea was choppy so you'll be struggling to keep it in view from ground level. He was right!
I soon picked it up and got good scope views, bit distant for a decent camera shot. A smart looking duck even in its eclipse plumage.
- also 1 Red-throated Diver

Other things of note...

On the short drive between Salthouse and Sheringham, I thought I'd had a small group of Waxwings fly over the car but they flew out of sight over the trees and I thought naaa maybe not. But then on the way back in the same area, a group of birders had gathered on the roadside near Weybourne. I pulled over and asked if they were onto anything, "some Waxwings have just gone over" he said. So it could've been what I saw after all.

I was also going to try for the Coues's Arctic Redpoll at Wells Woods (Wells-next-the-Sea) that was seen on Saturday but whilst watching the Stonechat, a couple of birders had just come from there and said they'd had no sign, so that kind of eased the time limit somewhat for me, nonetheless a thoroughly enjoyable quick visit.
I had some Mammals too, see Out of County Other Wildlife.





-- Edited by Rob Creek on Monday 5th of November 2018 11:20:33 PM

-- Edited by Rob Creek on Monday 5th of November 2018 11:25:43 PM

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Cley today(my last day)

Sea watch with northerly wind gave:

Gannet... 20 Mainly juvenile 

Manx Shearwater...5

Red-throated Diver....2

plus lots of Cormorants.

On shoreline vegetation:

Linnet...65

Skylark....1

Stonechat....1

Babcock Hide:

Egyptian Goose....3

Pink-footed Goose...42

Greylag Goose..100+

Spotted Redshank....1

Curlew...8

Black-tailed Godwit...1

Lots of Teal

Other Cley sightings today:

Snipe...5 

Wigeon...200+

Marsh Harrier...2 

Kestrel....1

 

 



-- Edited by Keith Mills on Friday 28th of September 2018 05:11:17 PM

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Further sightings from Cley yesterday:

From Daukes Hide a Kestrel and a Wheatear stood together on a gate,

facing the same way for several minutes...... An unusual couple.

Later by the same gate a Sparrowhawk flew in at zero altitude,

using the lower fence paling to look out over Simmonds Scrape.

Marsh Harrier....2

Stonechat...2

Green Sandpiper....1

Ruff and Dunlin on most lagoons

Black-tailed Godwits present on most lagoons with a flock of 82  

on Arnolds Marsh.

Singles of Golden Plover and Bar-tailed Godwit.

30 Redshank stood together. Several Curlew.

Wigeon and Teal in large numbers and good numbers

of Shelduck and Shoveler.

28 Cormorants together on an island.

Geese: Greylag, Pink- footed, Canada present and skeins of Brent over.

Missed the Pectoral Sandpiper Present on Wednesday as I was inland.

 



-- Edited by Keith Mills on Friday 28th of September 2018 07:05:43 AM



-- Edited by Keith Mills on Friday 28th of September 2018 10:57:46 AM

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Good day at Cley 26degrees centigrade.

Snipes Marsh:

Water Rail...1

Snipe....3

Little Grebe....4

Little Egret...3

Spotted Redshank....2

Teal....6

Grey Wagtail....2 despite no running water.

Grey Heron....1 juv.

Tufted Duck....1

Red-legged Partridge...19

Pheasant....7

 



-- Edited by Keith Mills on Thursday 27th of September 2018 07:37:37 PM

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At Titchwell yesterday there was 100+

Golden Plover stood on the Fresh Marsh. However when (often) flushed, the sky filled with c300 of them.

One culprit seen was a Hobby that shot over the marsh.

Ruff were present in number,

probably 40 to 50.

Very few Avocets and Marsh Harriers not showing.

Numerous Oystercatcher on the beach. Most with chin straps.

As well on the shore were Redshank, Dunlin, Turnstone, and Grey Plover. Black-tailed Godwits, and Curlew on the beach in numbers. Just a few Bar- tailed Godwits.

An Egyptian Goose and 2 Spoonbills were seen.

There is a local roost of Spoonbills numbering C 28.

Snipe seen.

Yesterday the two Spotted Redshank were still there first thing at Snipes Marsh.

A female Marsh Harrier drifted low over this marsh, in the evening and 3 Snipe were seen there both yesterday and today.

On Monday at sea, off Cley was a movement of at least 40 Gannet.

Most of these were juveniles. Flocks of Common Scoter (Many females) And Wigeon moved west.

At Salthouse, 50 Black-tailed Godwit were on a marsh pool on Monday.

 

 



-- Edited by Keith Mills on Wednesday 26th of September 2018 08:51:20 PM

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Just back from a fortnights holiday on the North Norfolk Coast.94 birds seen.
24 new birds for the year. As follows.
Sanderling
Great White Egret
Marsh Harrier
Greenshank
Ruff
Little Stint
Bearded Reedling
Curlew Sandpiper
Spoonbill
Bar Tailed Godwit
Black Tailed Godwit
Wood Sanpiper
Twite
Barn Owl
Turnstone
Eider
White Fronted Goose (eu)
Barnacle Goose
Grey Phalarope
Ringed Plover
Arctic Skua
Sandwich Tern
Black Throated Diver
Great Skua


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Cley:

The Snipes Marsh Bittern showed for me at 4.10pm.

As I waited for further sightings a Barn Owl flew close

past me at 4.25

Green Sandiper also flown in.

 

 



-- Edited by Keith Mills on Monday 24th of September 2018 08:14:54 PM

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Snipes Marsh this am:

Spotted Redshank....2

Green Sandpiper... 1 (2 earlier)

Little Grebe....6

Little Egret... 2

Grey Heron... 1 juv.

Teal....6

Linnet.... c45

A Bittern  was seen here yesterday but not by me!

 

 

 



-- Edited by Keith Mills on Monday 24th of September 2018 01:44:56 PM

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Snipes Marsh (Cley)had more birds than usual, late this afternoon:

Green Sandpiper....1

Little Egret....1

Little Grebe....1

Teal....11

Grey Heron....1

Tufted Duck....1

Swallows....2

Pheasant....Pair

A Kestrel was battling the wind by the road.



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30th August to 2nd September with Colin Rushmer and Chris Chandler. My first visit to Norfolk, ditto for Colin and first trip for a few years for Chris.

We spent most of Thursday 30th at Frampton Marsh in the end; Stilt Sandpiper was a lifer and also Long-billed Dowitcher and Turtle Dove were seen amongst 60 or so species. Our first taste of Norfolk birding was therefore Buckenham Marshes in the evening. It was lovely to be out on the wet meadows and we soon realised we were in Norfolk when a couple of Chinese Water Deer popped up! It looked ideal for Barn Owls and one appeared after a few minutes. This was a lifer for Colin and not a bad way to clock the species up. This was followed first by a nice Marsh Harrier over and then as the birds on the pool went up, we realised an Osprey was cruising over being chased by some crows. Stunning! It was carrying a massive fish that was still wriggling and we tentatively ID'ed a Carp...definitely felt like a 'that's Norfolk!' moment though.

Next morning we walked to Potter Heigham Marshes from the village hall. The village itself had Spotted Flycatcher and lots of other small birds and it was beautiful walking out to the new EA scrapes. We picked up a smart Whinchat and on the first pool the highlight was seeing a couple of Redshanks and then realising that they were actually juvenile Spotted Reds. It's a great spot and no wonder it's hosted some top stuff already. As we reached the edge of Hickling Broad I heard some distinctive bugling in the distance and just saw 7 or 8 Cranes before they dropped. A few minutes later 3 more flew by. Bliss as the dragonflies buzzed around us in warm sunshine. We got over 60 species walking around to the Rush Hill hide and back in to the village.

Decision time; try our luck at Swanton Novers or stay on the Broads for a longer while? We headed for the Raptor Watchpoint but no Honey Buzzards for us; just a week or 2 late we thought. Then Kelling Heath, again off the seasonal pace but the habitat looked brilliant and a visit in May or June would presumably be decent. We did see a Muntjac there. We got back into some birds at Cley NWT with another Whinchat and at least 6 Green Sandpipers standing out. A Barn Owl was hunting Salthouse Marsh as we drove by at about 4pm. 'That's Norfolk'...

On Saturday morning we had an hour on the front at Sheringham; even though conditions were terrible for seawatching we still managed a nice Arctic Skua heading east. The info services were touting 2 Little Stint at Cley so we headed back there. No sign of those birds but the morning was brilliant. 2 Hobbies were terrorising the scrapes and we could hear plenty of 'Pings' but the standout moment was a NWT volunteer shout of "Purple Heron" and a juvenile bird cruised right over our head! 'That's Norfolk!'...nice to find some decent birders as volunteers too. After deciding to move on and heading for the car park, we heard a loud Ping and a pair of Bearded Tits showed well.

We drove to Titchwell next and soon picked up the reported Red-necked Phalarope on the freshmarsh, as well as 22 Spoonbills roosting. On the beach were some nice waders and we also spotted 3 distant Arctic Skua chasing Sandwich Terns. In the sun it was further evidence of the appeal of the area. I don't expect to win the Pulitzer Prize for the journalistic insight of that comment by the way...A bizarre episode was the report at 18.05 of a Glossy Ibis on the freshmarsh. We arrived at 18.22 and it had gone. It was seen again in the morning but not by us. But as we scanned over the freshmarsh we picked up a smart juvenile Curlew Sandpiper as the final highlight of the day

In the morning we were back by 8am. The following few hours were probably the best of the trip for me. We had seen Bearded Tit by 8.30 and walking around to the eastern edge of the reserve saw more. From one position on the seawall bank we saw Bittern, Red Kite and Great White Egret in short order, all new for the trip, as well as enjoying the waders on the marsh and Reed Warblers and Beardies in reeds right in front of us.

Finally we tried Flitcham Abbey for a well-known Little Owl site but no luck there, and it was time to head home. What a great weekend though, with a trip list of around 120 in stunning weather and the promise of much more for other days to come. We saw Marsh Harrier at 7 different sites, 24 species of wader, with Ruff, Avocet and Black-tailed Godwit at every turn and overall the only thing that might have been different was the situation with drift migrants. Even on that score, if we'd fancied it we could have gone to Winterton near Great Yarmouth on Sunday afternoon and seen Wryneck and Red-backed Shrike too!

It was so good being able to visit iconic and wonderful locations. Thanks to the 2 guys for their company and especially Colin for driving the whole trip. Fair to say I can't wait to go back now...



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2 hours at Stiffkey Fen produced the target Red Backed Shrike. A few cropped pictures attached. Also Spoonbill, 2 Little Egret  Lesser Whitethroat  Red Legged Partridge  Marsh Harrier.

Nice to meet a sprightly Colin Davies too.



-- Edited by Chris Harper on Saturday 2nd of June 2018 05:09:15 PM

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Some pictures of the Ruff at Salthouse, as referred to in previous posts.



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Excellent weather for my trip to Norfolk last week. No rain, and on Thursday it reached 28.5 degrees C.

Yesterday at NWT Cley produced some good birds, starting with a very showy Cetti's Warbler. Everytime I went on the bridge, over the dyke by the road,

it popped up on the brambles and gave it's song. Often flying under the bridge to more brambles.( once through the bridge side rails)

Proceeding to Babcock hide in the east of the reserve I got a bonanza: Spoonbill, Black-necked Grebe (full summer plumage), single Greater White-fronted Goose, and a Greenshank

Plus the usual 40 Black-tailed Godwits and 7 Ruff

Returning to the broadwalk (to the central Hides) I picked up a Great White Egret in the adjacent field ( 2 more had moved through earlier) and more views of the Cetti's from the bridge.

Meanwhile overhead we had a drift of 5 Buzzards and a Red Kite to add to the 3 Marsh Harriers that were up.

An earlier visit in the week to the Eye gave me Yellow Wagtail, White Wagtail and a pair of Wheatear.

Skylarks were seen at the Eye but at nearby Gramborough Hill, there must have been scores in the field. A few very confiding, and perching on fence wire a few yards from me.

 

N.B.The count of Mediterranean Gulls this week at Titchwell RSPB is 100, Mainly adult full summer.





-- Edited by Keith Mills on Saturday 21st of April 2018 10:01:42 PM

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Suprised this evening to find a Ruff, by the roadside pond

In Salthouse village. Did not appear bothered by me as I took photos but it was a bit wary of the Brown rodents present.



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Snowy Owl at Snetisham, Norfolk. 11/3/2018

 

 

 

  What started off by being a birding trip to North Wales on Saturday night, quickly turned into something entirely different on Sunday morning? The reason, a first winter female Snowy Owl had been found in north Norfolk during the week and on Saturday had been seen in the Titchwell area, albeit a little distantly. The bird must have been blown to our shores, in front of the Beast from the East. Well our plans changed and with Kev C driving a full team left Rochdale around 7am. The weather was quite misty all the way there via M62, A1 and the legendary A17. The weather improved around the Kings Lynn area, but no news of the owl though. We had a look around the Dersingham bog area, but not many birds were stirring, so we headed off to RSPB Titchwell to see what we could find there.

  Now a text from a birding friend of mine soon changed our plans, it read Snowy Owl has been found at RSPB Snettisham. We were only 5 miles away, how often does that happen? We arrived at the car park at Sheringham, managed to park, grab our gear and set off following other birders. Myself and Steve B decided to take a little more time to walk the 2 miles to see the bird as the other lads walked at twitch speed. Upon arrival a line of around 50 birders, all stood on the boardwalk behind the hide, were watching the Snowy Owl. We managed to get in the line and watched the bird at around 80 yards distance. It was sat in the grass, possibly on prey, moving its head around, occasionally yawning and stretching its body occasionally, what a bird! We admired the bird for about an hour, Bob K wanted to stay until it flew (which would have been about 5 hours later) but the long walk back to the car had to be done as the weather looked like rain. Also at Snettisham: - Avocet, Skylark, Ringed Plover and a couple of Grey Partridge (expertly found by Steve B)

   Back to our original plan of visiting Titchwell, the weather was not so good so a spirited walk around one of my favourite reserves. Only a few Sanderling on the sea shore, but around 20 Mediterranean Gulls in the Black Headed Gull colony was very nice along with a hunting Barn Owl. Then as we were about to leave, a well-marked male Brambling had been found by Dave W on the bird feeders, ta for that Dave. We headed for home when another Barn Owl was seen by the A17 as the weather closed in reaching Rochdale by 8pm, quite a day.

Dave O



-- Edited by Dave Ousey on Thursday 15th of March 2018 01:32:57 PM



-- Edited by Dave Ousey on Thursday 15th of March 2018 01:38:06 PM



-- Edited by Dave Ousey on Thursday 15th of March 2018 01:38:30 PM

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An afternoon dash down to RSPB Snettisham yesterday where the 1st winter female Snowy Owl showed really well on a post and then great views as it flew around before landing again. 2 Barn Owls also came out and at one point, the Snowy and a Barn Owl were in the same view with the Snowy looking huge in comparison. Who knows where it or if it get reported next!

A bird I've always wanted to see, the "Beast from the East" can be forgiven as we headed back home very happy.

  

 



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Just back from a fortnights holiday on the North Norfolk Coast based in East Runton. Covered all the coast from Titchwell to Cromer We used the Coasthopper bus to ferry us to various locations including
Cley, Weybourne, Kelling, Salthouse, Blakeney, Morston, Stiffkey, Wells, Holkham and Burnham Overy Staithe. 108 birds seen.The best birds seen as follows.
Sparrowhawk.
Rook
Kestrel
Rock Pipit
Turnstone
Shag
Pink Footed Goose
Meadow Pipit
Skylark
Little Egret
Arctic Skua
Great Skua
Oystercatcher
Whimbrel
Spoonbill
Redshank
Linnet
Spotted Redshank
Green Sandpiper
Pied Flycatcher
Wheatear
Curlew
Barnacle Goose
Pintail
Goldeneye
Wigeon
Greenshank
Ringed Plover
Little Ringed Plover
Black Tailed Godwit
Bar Tailed Godwit
Dunlin
Curlew Sandpiper
Knot
Bearded reedling
Ruff
Grey Plover
Common sandpiper
Sanderling
Golden Plover
Common Snipe
Little Stint
Willow Tit
Wood Sandpiper
Greenfinch
Gannet
Red Throated Diver
Brent Goose(DB)
Manx Shearwater
Hen Harrier
Great White Egret
Hobby
Crane
Mediterranean Gull
Common Buzzard
Stonechat
Marsh Harrier
Sandwich Tern
Water Rail
Red Kite
Egyptian Goose


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Just back from a week's non-birding holiday

Best were the nesting Turtle Doves in Titchwell car park (2 adults, 1 chick)

Also seen on the reserve over the week were

Spoonbills 3
Ruff 2 (both resplendent males)
Spotted Redshank 6
Avocets (well into 3 figures)
Grasshopper Warbler 2
Cetti's Warbler lots
Cuckoo
Little Gull 4
Black-tailed Godwits c80 (including a colour ringed individual [Right Yellow/Red. Left Red/Metal]. I will try to discover its origins)
Bar-tailed Godwits 18
Marsh Harrier 3
Bearded Tit 6

Other wildlife highlight was a Lesser Emperor dragonfly

Cheers, John



-- Edited by John Rayner on Sunday 25th of June 2017 12:16:15 AM

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Good day out in North Norfolk in improving weather:

Kelling Heath.
Woodlark perched on posts by the railway track and at least one other bird in song. Several Dartford Warblers seen. Plus usual heathland species.

Cley.
Good views of Black-winged Stilt on Pat's Pool, Mediterranean Gull over, brief glimpse of Bearded Tit, usual Marshland species.

Choseley Barns:
Early afternoon visit; just missed 2 Turtle Doves (no Partridges in Pear trees eitherbiggrin) but 2 Red Kites, 2 Common Buzzards and a male Marsh Harrier in the air together. The small seed-eating birds had all been flushed with the Turtle Doves, but we managed a Lesser Whitethroat skulking as usual in nearby hedges.
Late afternoon visit; a quartette of Columbiformes with single Turtle and Collared Doves, 2 Stock Doves and 5 Wood Pigeons feeding on the spilled grain. Yellowhammer and Linnet also.

Titchwell:
Among the usual waders and waterfowl; Red-Crested Pochard, Egyptian Goose, summer-plumage Sanderling, Little Gull (very close to the embankment), Little, Common and Sandwich Terns, another male Bearded Tit, Cetti's Warbler.

Finished the evening at Dersingham Bog with a minimum of 4 roding Woodcock and 6 Nightjar (three in the air together chasing around one clump of trees


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Spent a few days camping out by Kelling Heath. The weather was sweltering but the nights cold. I had targets including Nightjar and research paid off on the first night when I had views of several - no displaying but still a lifer. I thought by the churring I could hear (even from my tent) that this is one of the foremost sites in the country for the species. I didn't manage Dartford Warbler or Woodlark, although this was the right area and I had seen them in Berkshire.

Nightingale was another target and although a birder I met realigned my information on good sites (this year) I never made it over and it was logistically a snag - I will try Paxton Pits next spring.

A Turtle Dove had been seen in the vicinity that same evening, which was inspiring but galling as I need to see one.

 

Then it was off to Titchwell, one of the country's renowned RSPB sites - I had Marsh Harriers, Cuckoo, several Cetti's Warblers and a lot of Avocet but I didn't see the reported Red Kite/flyover Spoonbill and the Turtle Dove that had been around recently had found pastures new.

 

I will be back for sure it's a lovely part of the world, all achieved on public transport (I managed 90 per cent of the coasthopper route as I came back via King's Lynn) so next time it could be Snettisham etc



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Excellent repeat views of Woodlarks( pair) and male Dartford Warbler on Kelling Heath this am.
Both males were singing.
Also seen: Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Linnet, Buzzards and a Jay.
6 pairs of Dartford Warblers on the heath.
Surprisingly no Stonechat seen.


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Yesterday mid morning while driving east on the coast road just before Blakeney:
Male Hen Harrier hunting the field below the road; and therfore seen from above.
A scarce bird in these parts despite the winter roost near Wells.



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Titchwell today:
Fresh marsh...32+ Mediterranean Gulls. Yes that's 32+

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On our final morning of the trip we headed out to Halvergate Marshes in the hope of locating a Cattle Egret. Many white blobs were scrutinized but none of the animate ones proved to be the bird for which we were looking. We did add a fairly distant Peregrine to our trip list but the highlight was a hunting Barn Owl which then perched at very close quarters. The only wild one most of us have seen closer was the one which almost flew into the Fen Hide at Titchwell last year! Some excellent photos were obtained. We headed over to Buckenham (where the light was again against us) and Cantley (where the birds were distant) before giving up on the Bean Geese.

The weather at Lynford Arboretum was better today but initially we only had one brief view of a Hawfinch. The feeding station at the bridge had a Marsh Tit as well as the commoner species, along with most of the other 'usual suspects'. News that the Hawfinches gather in the paddock pre-roost led us to return to the industrial estate in Thetford for a bit more 'gulling' to fill in the time. We found at least three Yellow-legged Gulls among the flock and a different Iceland Gull to the one we saw on Friday, but we were less sure about the immature Caspian Gull claimed by one of the other watchers.(Subsequently confirmed by Ian from photos taken by Riggers). We returned to Lynford just before a Glaucous Gull arrived, apparently, but after our very close encounter with one on Sunday it wasn't too great a loss. A minimum of 21 Hawfinches were around the very misty paddock when we got back to Lynford, with quite a bit of movement making an accurate count impossible. As the mist rose and the light faded we headed home with a reasonable tally of 121 species seen and 3 more heard.

-- Edited by Mike Chorley on Tuesday 17th of January 2017 08:54:58 AM

-- Edited by Mike Chorley on Tuesday 17th of January 2017 10:39:48 PM

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Despite the unfavorable weather forecast and recent coastal flooding we had a pretty good day out along the North Norfolk Coast today. We called in at Ludham for a more prolonged look at the swans and confirmed Whoopers as well as the Bewick's we'd seen yesterday. The Black Redstart at Sherringham proved elusive (unsurprisingly) and the coast road from Kelling to Cley was closed but there was access from the heath to Salthouse so we popped down to see how things were and were rewarded with 3 Bearded Tits in what is normally the roadside vegetation. A flock of about 100 Dark-bellied Brent Geese were here as well swimming on the fields opposite the pub.

After a quick look at the state of things at Cley we headed to Brancaster. En route Riggers nearly acquired a new radiator badge as we almost ran over an adult Glaucous Gull feeding on a Pheasant carcass on the road just beyond Stiffkey Fen by the pools in the large bend of the road. It really didn't want to give up its' prize and only took wing at the last possible moment! Our luck continued at Holkham when the decision to scope the marsh from safe vantage points along the road added Great White Egret to the list without having to trek to the hide and back. At Brancaster we failed to locate the flock of Shorelark there, as did other birders. Greenshank, Little Grebe and a selection of commoner waders were added to the trip list before we headed on to Thornham where 30 Twite were a 'from the car' tick. The Ferruginous Duck at Holme was asleep on the far bank of Broad Water, but raised its' head from time to time for a quick preen. 23 Red- legged Partridge were almost the only birds present at Chosely Barns with the smaller stuff mostly out of sight in the set-aside, so after a quick lunch we headed on to Titchwell. A Brambling was under the feeders on the reserve side of reception, with a Water Rail showing briefly but well in the ditch beyond, as did a Chiffchaff. A large but compact flock of Scoter well out from the beach would have been a tricky scoping job in the prevailing conditions but luckily a couple of Common Scoter and one of their Velvet cousins were close in shore along with Goldeneye and 6 Long-tailed Duck. The water levels were high on both marshes, leading to quite low numbers of birds being present, but we found Black-tailed Godwit, Knot and 3 pairs of Pintail. A second Chiffchaff foraging on reed matting was much greyer than the first bird we saw but couldn't be satisfactorily assigned to the tristis sub-species. Fortified by hot beverages and cakes we headed to Fen Hide to watch the harriers coming in to roost. No Bittern this trip but very good prolonged views of a Cetti's Warbler working along the base of the reeds was a reasonable finish to the day

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