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Monday, 31 March 2014

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert' 
Great White Egret, Common Cranes x 2 at Horsey
Large Falcon Sp. flew south from Horsey Gap
Black Redstart at Titchwell
Black Redstart at Sidestrand
Woodlark at Winterton
Great Northern Diver at Blakeney Harbour
Great White Egret, Little Ringed Plovers x 3 at Welney WWT
Slavonian Grebe at Filby Broad
Little Ringed Plovers x 2, Yellow Wagtail at Pentney Gravel Pits
Great White Egret (probable) at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB
Black Redstart at East Runton
Hen Harrier at Breydon Water
Black Redstart, Firecrest at Great Yarmouth Cemetery
Great White Egret at Cley NWT
White Wagtail at Northrepps
Sandwich Tern at Buckingham Marshes RSPB

Other News
DUSKY WARBLER remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk
FERRUGINOUS DUCK remains at Minsmere RSPB, Suffolk
Saw my first Brimstone butterfly at work today.

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! BAIKAL TEAL – remains at Fen Drayton Gravel Pits, Moore Lake, Cambridgeshire. Another picture HERE
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Sunday, 30 March 2014

We Have Light!

The clocks moving forward made getting up this morning really difficult, but so looking forward to lighter evenings to go birding after work – wonderful! No birding this weekend because of family celebration. Roll on next weekend!

Another dog rant (from someone else this time!)
http://www.birdforum.net/showpost.php?p=2958685&postcount=22459

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert' 
Black Redstart at Horsey Mere
Hen Harrier at Weybourne
Mealy Redpoll, Lesser Redpolls x 20, Sedge Warbler at Snettisham Coastal Park
Great White Egret at Kelling
Crossbills x 9 at Cromer
Short-eared Owl, Black-necked Grebe, Long-tailed Duck at Holme
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL, Hawfinches x 4 at Lynford Aboretum
Black Redstart at Norwich
Black Redstart, Hen Harrier, Spotted Redshanks x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
Black Redstart (opposite In-Focus) at Titchwell
Black Redstart at Hunstanton

Other News
DUSKY WARBLER remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk
FERRUGINOUS DUCK remains at Minsmere RSPB, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! BAIKAL TEAL – remains at Fen Drayton Gravel Pits, Moore Lake, Cambridgeshire. Another picture HERE
MEGA! FORSTER'S TERN – County Galway, Ireland
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

GOLDEN WEDDING ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATIONS!

My parent's Peter & Margaret Clarke on their Wedding Day
at St. Mary's Church, Holme-next-Sea –
30th March 1964.     

 Golden Wedding Anniversary
                                                                               
"Congratulations on Your 50 Years of Marriage"
30th March 2014

Announcements in the Lynn News and the EDP
Announcement in Lynn News Friday – 28th March.
Announcement in Eastern Daily Press – 29th March.
 
A wonderful sunny day spent with my family at Holme. My sisters and I made up a wicker basket, lined with gold fabric (sewn in by me and it took forever to do) filled with gold themed presents and adorned with ribbons. A cake with hand-piping by me, which wasn't too bad, but I won't make a cake decorator! An Aqua-packed flower bouquet which included freesia's, these are my mother's favourite flower (bought from a florist in King's Lynn). I spent hours yesterday, making a huge (so father could see it) A3+ card, which had the above picture on the front, mounted on sparkly gold and black card, with a picture of a Wheatear on the back and Holme Beach on the inside, along with a mass of sparkle and glitter added inside and cellophane wrap to protect it – I have never spent so much time creating a card!
Front of my card

Back of my card – Wheatear at Holme

Inside of my card – Holme Beach

We put up gold anniversary balloons and a Golden Wedding Anniversary Banner to jazz up the house. Mother and father had several cards from local people, which was really nice of them. Peter Ham very kindly dropped in a bottle of wine, whilst we were there, which was really nice, as father rarely gets any visitors nowadays.
We had a very grand lunch out (not) – at parent's request, we had fish 'n' chips at home followed by raspberry trifle – all good for the waistline!

After lunch, mother and father opened their presents – well actually, mother opened the presents whilst father worked his way through a box of Lindt chocolates, which Lucy and Vivien made a good job of assisting with as well! In the 'gold' basket we had: a Thornton's chocolate champagne bottle, 4 Lindt Bunnies, a gold Teddy, Nescafe Gold, Werthers sweets in jar, gold heart chocolates in jar, 3 boxes of Lindt Swiss Luxury Collection chocolates, Organic honey, Mango Jam, Swiss Chocolate Eggs, Half bottle of Champagne, Framed picture of their wedding day, Gold Candle, Gold ornate watering can, gold chocolate coins, gold pen, black magic..... can't remember some of the presents now!
The Gold Basket of Presents!

Spent the rest of the afternoon sitting in the garden – it was so warm, couldn't have asked for better weather – a Chiffchaff serenaded us. Both parent's refused to have their pictures taken together, but father let me take one of him. I was really worried that father wouldn't make their special anniversary, so glad he did – he seemed fairly well, apart from being unsteady on his feet. Had cake and naughty things for tea. A lovely day all round.
The cake I attempted to decorate!

Saturday, 29 March 2014

MEGA! BAIKAL TEAL IN CAMBRIDGE!

MEGA! BAIKAL TEAL – Fen Drayton Gravel Pits, Moore Lake, Cambridgeshire.

Pictures HERE

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Black Redstart at Winterton
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILLS x 4, Hawfinch, Firecrests x 3, Mealy Redpoll at Lynford Aboretum
Common Cranes x 2 at Kimberley
Snow Buntings x 2, Velvet Scoters x 7 at Titchwell RSPB
Black Redstart at Blakeney Point
Snow Bunting at Wells
Rough-legged Buzzard at Berney Marshes RSPB
Firecrests x 3 at Great Yarmouth Cemetery
Great White Egret, Snow Bunting at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse
Spoonbills x 2, Richard's Pipit at Cley NWT
Spotted Redshanks x 2 at Burgh Castle

Other News
DUSKY WARBLER remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk
• New Information Board at Walsey Hills NOA.

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! BAIKAL TEAL – Fen Drayton Gravel Pits, Moore Lake, Cambridgeshire
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Friday, 28 March 2014

Busy, Busy Bee!

I spent the entire evening looking for Golden Wedding Anniversary presents and bits and pieces to make my card with, cake etc. I can't find piped gold icing – will have to continue my search tomorrow, flowers to get etc. Can't see me birding tomorrow sadly, as when I have sorted all that I have to finish editing some photos. I really wish it wasn't SE winds tomorrow, although I think its a little too early yet for anything serious to turn up, well I hope not anyway! Golden Wedding Anniversary announcement in Lynn News today and in tomorrow's EDP.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Mediterranean Gulls x 28 at Stiffkey Fen
Ruddy Shelducks x 2 at Fring
Great Northern Divers x 2 at Blakeney Harbour
Mealy Redpoll at UEA, Norwich
Slavonian Grebe at Filby Broad
Great White Egret, Richard's Pipit at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILLS  x 5, Hawfinches x 2 at Lynford Aboretum
Little Gulls x 3 at Barton Broad
Osprey, Ring Ouzel, Snow Buntings x 2, Velvet Scoters x 5 at Titchwell RSPB
Snow Bunting at Salthouse
Rough-legged Buzzard at Haddiscoe Island, viewable from Waveney Forest
Snow Bunting at Happisburgh

Other News
EAST BANK, CLEY – NOW OPEN!
DUSKY WARBLER remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk
FERRUGINOUS DUCK remains at Minsmere RSPB, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Thursday, 27 March 2014

A Birdwatchers' Guide to Portugal, the Azores & Madeira Archipelagos – NEW ADDITION!

http://www.nhbs.com/a_birdwatchers_guide_to_portugal_tefno_195308.html

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Tundra Peregrine (probable) at Cley NWT
Great White Egret at Welney WWT
Little Gulls x 2 at Barton Broad
Great White Egret at Halvergate Marshes
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILLS  x 5 at Lynford Aboretum
Short-eared Owl at Snettisham RSPB
Slavonian Grebe at Filby Broad
Richard's Pipit at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse
Crossbills x 2 at Holme NOA

Other News
EAST BANK, CLEY – CLOSED FOR REPAIRS 
DUSKY WARBLER remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk
OLIVE-BACKED PIPIT again in Leiston, Suffolk
FERRUGINOUS DUCK at Minsmere RSPB, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Golden Wedding Anniversary!

My parent's Peter and Margaret Clarke on their Wedding Day,
30th March 1964 at St. Mary's Church, Holme-next-Sea.


Note spelling of village as it was then, not Holme-next-the-Sea!!! Golden Wedding Anniversary this Sunday! I hope the Eastern Daily Press on Saturday and the Lynn News Friday get the adverts correct! Otherwise, there will be trouble!!! Just found out that the Lynn News adverts are now typeset in India!!! How crazy is that? 37 of us used to create all the adverts for Lynn News and other sister newspapers – local people working for local people! How things have changed!

I married in the same church on 13th June 1992. I remember that day like yesterday, feeling so proud with my father walking me down the aisle. But I won't ever be celebrating my Golden Wedding Anniversary!!! I love this picture so much. My mother had very long black hair - always wore it up though – I only ever saw it down when she washed it. More news on the celebrations on Sunday!

http://www.familynotices24.co.uk/edp/view/3390097/clarke

RBA Weekly Round-Up 19th to 25th March

By Mark Golley
http://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/v2/Content/weeklyroundup2014no12.aspx?s_id=320692822

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
White Storks x 2 (escaped), Slavonian Grebe at Filby Broad
Black Redstart at Cley
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILLS  x 4, Crossbills x 20, Firecrests x 3, Hawfinches x 3, Lesser-spotted Woodpecker at Lynford Aboretum
Great Northern Diver at Blakeney Harbour

Other News
EAST BANK, CLEY – CLOSED FOR REPAIRS 
Dusky Warbler remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
NONE!

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Woodlark, Crossbills x 25 at Sidestrand
Slavonian Grebe at Filby Broad
Crossbills x 8 at Winterton
Richard's Pipit at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL, Hawfinches x 3 at Lynford Aboretum
Garganey at Hockwold Washes
Red-crested Pochard x 8 at Titchwell RSPB
Black Redstart at Gorleston-on-Sea
Long-tailed Ducks x 3 at Holme
Great White Egret, Garganey at Welney WWT

Other News
EAST BANK, CLEY – CLOSED FOR REPAIRS 
Dusky Warbler remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Monday, 24 March 2014

MEGA! SNOWY OWL in Essex!!!

MEGA! SNOWY OWL 

Mucking Flats, flew from sea wall near Mucking Bay over River Thames, then flew inland towards Bata Factory, Essex. No further sign in the afternoon though.

We have yet to hear who the finder was........

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Hen Harrier at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB
Snow Buntings x 3 at Thornham Point
Hen Harrier, Spotted Redshank at Thornham Harbour
Sedge Warbler at Titchwell RSPB
Great White Egret at Ormesby Broad
Slavonian Grebe at Filby Broad
Rough-legged Buzzards x 2 at Haddiscoe Island, viewable from Waveney Forest
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILLS x 3 at Lynford Aboretum
Great Northern Divers x 3 at Blakeney Harbour
Purple Sandpipers x 2 at Sheringham
Garganey at Welney WWT
Garganey at Hockwold Washes
Great White Egret at Admiralty Point, King's Lynn
Snow Bunting at Salthouse
Long-tailed Ducks x 3 at Holme

Other News
EAST BANK, CLEY – CLOSED FOR REPAIRS 
Dusky Warbler remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! SNOWY OWL – Mucking Flats, flew from sea wall near Mucking Bay over River Thames, then flew inland towards Bata Factory, Essex.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Cley, Salthouse & The Firecrest!

Cley Windmill

Arrived at Walsey Hills NOA just after 9am. It was really chilly this morning. I could see Eddie's bike parked up, which mean't he was looking for the Firecrest (reported yesterday at 4pm). Cetti's Warbler and 2 Chiffchaffs were singing, 3 Long-tailed Tits and the usual Blue, Great Tits, Chaffinches, Greenfinch, Hedgesparrows and Goldfinches were seen. As I walked along the bottom path – I skulked, stood still, crept along the path, waited.... no Firecrest and no Eddie to be found either! I spent at least an hour+ in there, but when the rain started to fall, I decided it was a good time to nip to the Cley NWT Visitor Centre for a cup of coffee.

At the V.C. I wrote in the sightings book: "Chiffchaff singing at Walsey Hills NOA, but no sign of the Firecrest yet!" As I settled down with my mug of coffee and a cheese scone (OK, I succumbed!), Eddie walked into the cafe area with a smug expression – that look, when someone has seen something that you haven't –  he had of course SEEN the Firecrest, half way along the bottom path about 5 minutes after I left and wrote in the sightings book, directly under my entry "Firecrest seen well" – B*ll*cks Mr Myers!!! Lots of rude remarks then followed from Eddie (after mine) such as "would you like me to point it out for you" and the list goes on....Ha ha ha!
Cormorants flying west past Coastguards.


I went back to Walsey with Eddie and spent more time, not seeing the Firecrest. Eddie went off elsewhere and I went to Coastguards. The sun was now out and it was beautiful, but remained freezing cold all day. I noticed on RBA that two Sandwich Terns had been seen at Blakeney Point today, so I stood and looked at the sea for a while, but nothing of particular note. I had a fabulous count of 6 Wheatears on the Eye Field, towards the end of North Scrape along with a few Skylarks, Meadow Pipits and a big flock of Golden Plover.

Went to Cleyspy to get some new eye cups for my bins and bought some new feet for my tripod (lost two recently) and Andrew sorted out my seized up (salt & sand) tripod for me. Back to the Visitor Centre for lunch and managed to get a window seat. Here I bumped into the birder who initially found the Great Snipe in Cley (forgotten his name, sorry).

Back to Walsey Hills AGAIN. I have spent so much time looking for that Firecrest, I have lost count how many times I went back!!! A couple of birders said they could hear it, but I couldn't and apparently it also flew across a couple of times, but all I saw here were 3 Chiffchaffs flicking about. Gave up.
Skylark at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse.

Parked up at Beach Road, Salthouse and walked to Gramborough Hill. Only 1 Wheatear was seen here briefly, sitting on a post. A few Meadow Pipits around. Nothing else of note and no birds in the bushes at the base of the hill. I got back to the car just in time before it started to rain again. 2 Pied Wagtails posed on the wire fence.

Coastguards – parked my car in the overspill carpark alongside the fence and used the car as a hide to watch and photograph the Golden Plover flock. A lone lapwing stood by the Eye puddle. Suddenly a black creature, larger than a rabbit came bounding across the marsh and was heading for the shingle and beach – it wasn't until it got closer that I realised it was a bl**dy dog!!! It obviously flushed the entire Golden Plover flock! A man then appeared, part way across the marsh to retrieve the dog – I am beyond fed-up with out of control dogs, I really am, enough is enough. As I 'tweeted' recently, I seriously think that all dogs should be kept on a lead in public – that way wildlife would not be disturbed, other people would not be accosted and there wouldn't be any dog attacks on children or adults – I really can't see what the problem would be, with this put into place. Anyway, back to birds. Mute Swans flew across the Cley Windmill in moody skies, which I managed to capture on the camera. Raining again, which I don't mind at all when I'm sitting in the car with a cup of coffee! The day seemed to disappear exceptionally quickly – don't know where the time went!
 Golden Plover at the Eye Puddle, Coastguards.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILLS x 5, Crossbills x 30, Hawfinch, Firecrests x 2 at Lynford Aboretum
Hen Harrier Male at Holme
Sandwich Terns x 2 at Blakeney Point
Garganey at Hockwold Washes
Snow Bunting at Happisburgh
Purple Sandpipers x 9 at Sea Palling
Firecrest at Walsey Hills NOA
Great White Egret (on Friday) at Cley NWT
Black Brant at Stiffkey
Garganey, Ruddy Shelduck at Welney WWT

Other News
EAST BANK, CLEY – CLOSED FOR REPAIRS 
Dusky Warbler remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO – remains, 1.5 miles SSW of Tenby at Giltar Point, Pembrokeshire, South Wales.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Snettisham RSPB on Countryfile This Sunday!

http://www.countryfile.com/countryfile-tv/countryfile-sunday-beaches

"A Birder’s Guide to Everything"

http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2014/03/bird_movies_reviewed_the_birder_and_a_birder_s_guide_to_everything.2.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cup5DCy3cP0

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Ruddy Shelduck near Kimberley Hall at Wymondham
Hen Harrier Male at Titchwell RSPB
White Wagtail at Cley NWT
Lapland Bunting at Holme
Mealy Redpolls x 4 at Sculthorpe Moor Nature Reserve
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL Male, Hawfinches x 2 at Lynford Aboretum
Black-throated Diver at Winterton
Hooded Crow, Snow Bunting at Happisburgh
Garganey at Welney WWT
Firecrest at Walsey Hills NOA 
Rough-legged Buzzard at Haddiscoe Island, viewable from Waveney Forest

Other News
EAST BANK, CLEY – CLOSED FOR REPAIRS 
Dusky Warbler remains south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk
• Eddie M. has seen 18 Wheatears at Cley NWT today!

• My pictures now added to last Sunday's Post.
• Also pictures added to post for Titchwell RSPB Storm Damage

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO – again, 1.5 miles SSW of Tenby at Giltar Point, Pembrokeshire, South Wales.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Friday, 21 March 2014

Searching for the Northern Lights in the UK

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-26678181

Friday Update!

Well, its been a very tiring week, with little achieved in the evenings. Lost another 2.5lbs at SW, so pleased with that. Looking forward to my time off in April – come on!

Looks like its going to be a cold weekend with mixed weather, as expected for March really I suppose. Everyone was spoilt with last weekend's glorious weather! Don't get the shorts out yet – well I won't be anyway!!! LOL! You'll need hat, gloves, scarves, soup and thermals!

South westerly winds and 'A cold day on Saturday with sunny spells and showers, possibly wintry on hills, and heavy by the afternoon with local hail and thunder.'

'Showers on Sunday, dying out overnight, then turning frosty.'

http://www.bbc.co.uk/weather/2652856

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Hooded Crow, Black Redstart at Happisburgh
Firecrest at Walsey Hills NOA
Snow Bunting at Hunstanton
Black Redstart at Weybourne
Mealy Redpolls x 5 at Sculthorpe Moor Nature Reserve
Glaucous Gull at Overstrand
Snow Bunting at Cley NWT
Little Gull at Barton Broad NWT
Rough-legged Buzzard at Haddiscoe Island, viewable from Waveney Forest
Black Brant at Stiffkey
TWO-BARRED CROSSBILL Male at Lynford Aboretum
Hen Harrier at Claxton Marshes
Purple Sandpipers x 2 at Sheringham

Other News
EAST BANK, CLEY – CLOSED FOR ONE WEEK
Dusky Warbler reminas south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Fracking 'could harm wildlife'

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-26553117

New West Norfolk Wetland Alongside River Wissey Will Offer Home to Bitterns and Marsh Harriers

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/environment/new_west_norfolk_wetland_alongside_river_wissey_will_offer_home_to_bitterns_and_marsh_harriers_1_3446521

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Great White Egret (yesterday) at Hickling Broad NWT
Glossy Ibis at Rush Hill Scrape, Hickling Broad NWT
Great White Egret, Water Pipit at Cley NWT
Snow Bunting, Crossbills x 5 at Hunstanton
Hawfinches x 2 at Lynford Aboretum

Other News
Olive-backed Pipit at Leiston, Suffolk
Dusky Warbler south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

RBA Weekly Round-Up 12th to 18th March

By Mark Golley
http://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/v2/Content/weeklyroundup2014no11.aspx?s_id=111568054

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Little Gull on River Chet, Loddon
Tundra Peregrine (probable) yesterday at Salthouse
Rough-legged Buzzard at Haddiscoe Island, viewable from Waveney Forest
TWO-BARRRED CROSSBILL at Lynford Aboretum
Rough-legged Buzzard, Hen Harriers x 2 at Ongar Hill, King's Lynn
Richard's Pipit (probable) at Ashwicken Pits, King's Lynn
PARROT CROSSBILLS x 6 at Grimes Graves
Hen Harrier at Scolt Head Island
Short-eared Owl at Burnham Overy Staithe
Little Gull at Hemsby

Other News
Olive-backed Pipit at Leiston, Suffolk
Dusky Warbler south side of Oulton Marshes SWT, Lowestoft, Suffolk

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Rough-legged Buzzards x 2 (unconfirmed report) at Burnham Overy Dunes
Rough-legged Buzzards x 2 (unconfirmed report) at Lady Ann's Drive, Holkham
Black-throated Divers x 2, Great Northern Diver at Blakeney Harbour
Rough-legged Buzzard, Great White Egret, Black Brants x 2, Pale-bellied Brent Goose, Dark-bellied Brent Geese x 2,000 at Ongar Hill, King's Lynn
Hawfinches x 5 (yesterday) at Lynford Aboretum
PARROT CROSSBILL (probable) at Felbrigg

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO – remains, 1.5 miles SSW of Tenby at Giltar Point, Pembrokeshire, South Wales.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Monday, 17 March 2014

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Velvet Scoter at Hemsby
Firecrest at Great Yarmouth Cemetery
Iceland Gull at South Denes, Great YarmouthScaup at Brancaster
Hawfinch flew west over Wiveton

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO – remains, 1.5 miles SSW of Tenby at Giltar Point, Pembrokeshire, South Wales.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Burnham Overy Dunes & Gun Hill!

 Skylark singing its heart out at Gun Hill.

After having my lunch, I left my house just after 2pm. It was a glorious day and it felt warm too! I cruised, ok maybe not....... whizzed along the A148, bopping to Kiss FM in my Skoda!!! I have not been to Burnham Overy Dunes since before the storm surge in December and I was interested to see how much erosion had taken place. This is one of my favourite places to go birding and I was also hoping for a hirundine or two maybe, a second wheatear or any spring migrants to set the heart racing!

On route I had a flock of 50+ Redwings overhead, just south of Burnham Market. I hate it when you trying to look at birds whilst driving, proves tricky at times, even for Penelope Pitstop!!! Parked up on the main road, just east of Burnham Overy at 3pm and made my way along the public footpath/sea wall to Gun Hill.

On the pools and marsh I saw Shelducks, Redshanks, Coot, Shoveler, Teal, Wigeon, Greylags, Magpies, Woodpigeons, Curlew, Little Egrets, flocks of Starlings going east and good numbers of Brent Geese. A Tortoiseshell fluttered past me, but no other butterflies were seen, a bit too windy really I suppose. Bumped into Mike Sidwell on route and had a 'birdy' chat. I was almost at the end of the path (just before the bushes) when I encountered a very amusing incident! There are notices up, clearly stating to 'Please keep you dog on lead' but as is usual, not many people take much notice of these. A couple were cycling along the path with their dog trailing way behind, when they suddenly realised their dog was up to something. When they stopped to look round, the mutt was rolling around, against a very decayed seal, in the vegetation below the path – the man dumped his bike and shouting at the dog, ran down to haul it back. I couldn't help but chuckle to myself, that dog would absolutely stink!!!! That will teach them for taking it off the lead! It was clearly evident, where the storm surge had reached, with tidal debris right up to the top of the path! Although a beautiful day, it was quite windy and this made for a chilly walk back later.
Male Stonchat at Gun Hill.

As I looked back towards the main road with my bins, I discovered that I had a Short-eared Owl in my view at 3.30pm! I watched for a while as it flew round the marsh and saw this again later on the way back. In the bushes at the end of the path, only a robin was seen. On the walk west to Gun Hill I had a fabulous male Stonechat (unringed) perched on the sueda bushes, but it was nigh on impossible to get a decent picture of. A few Meadow Pipits were around and 2 Linnets flew over, but best of all was a Skylark singing its heart out, way above me in the perfect blue sky (see photo). I love listening to skylarks, such a summery sound and takes me back to my childhood of hot summers at Holme. At Gun Hill itself, a Kestrel was on the deck briefly before taking off west. This short-turfed area is a favoured spot for wheatears, but none were found. I sat on the seat behind the 'Grey Goose' and had a coffee. It was so lovely to be here. There were three Ringed Plovers on the shingle spit along with a couple of Oystercatchers. I walked over the dunes to the seaward side of Gun Hill. I was pleased to see that most of the bushes and the small pine tree had survived the recent storm. The dunes however had been stripped back to a large area of short marram tufts. A Grey Partridge plummeted out of the bushes, which made me jump! There were three more Ringed Plovers and several Oystercatchers on the shoreline at 4.30pm. The tide was in and the sea was rocking – it looked spectacular! Nothing on the sea of note. I dragged up a large branch off the beach and made into a Roller perch for later this year – here's hoping!
The couple plus dog, attempting a short-cut across the marsh.

Large Gull roost at Burnham Overy.


On route back, I saw the Stonechat briefly again in the same sueda bushes. Walking along the sea wall, I noted a very large gull roost on the marsh. A couple with a dog off lead, decided to take a short cut (or so they thought) through the marsh itself, disturbing all the birds and when they reached the large creek, realised they had to turn back – that's why there is a public footpath!!! The setting sun was out of this world and the swathes of pinks and reds increased in intensity as the sun set. 5 Pied Wagtails flew west over the marsh. I watched the Short-eared Owl again, along with 4 Marsh Harriers and a Heron flew west. One Spoonbill was also seen on the east side of the path and a Sparrowhawk flew overhead, as did Cormorants and Brent Geese. Several Hares were running over the marsh. It was really nippy now and I had to put my gloves on. I spent a long time taking arty farty pictures of the sunset before setting off home. A spectacular afternoon indeed.

Gold Shimmers
Harbour, Burnham Overy.

 
SUNSET
Burnham Overy Dunes and Gun Hill.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Crossbills x 2 at Winterton
Little Ringed Plover flew over Norwich
Swallow flew over Salthouse
PARROT CROSSBILLS x 4 at Sheringham Park
Swallows x 2 at Weybourne
Firecrest at Holkham
Velvet Scoters x 2 at Hopton-on-Sea
Iceland Gull at Attleborough
Swallow at Thornham
Short-eared Owl (P.A.C.) at Burnham Overy Staithe
Common Crane at Hingham
Hawfinches x 3 at Lynford Aboretum
Rough-legged Buzzard reported yesterday at Edgefield
Great White Egret, Spoonbill at Cley NWT
Black Redstart at Great Yarmouth

Other News
Red-eared Terrapin at South Wootton Common

MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO – remains, 1.5 miles SSW of Tenby at Giltar Point, Pembrokeshire, South Wales.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Glorious Sunshine!!!

I am soooo excited, finished work early. Just had a quick lunch and off out birding for the afternoon!!! Eddie M. has had the first Swallow at 11.18am flying over Salthouse, lovely!

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Snettisham Coastal Park

 
SUNSET 
Snettisham Coastal Park

Don't get excited, I have very little to write about today. I have been editing photos for forthcoming publications for the majority of the day. But when the sun came blazing out later on, I just had to get out for a short while. My late afternoon walk at Snettisham Coastal Park produced almost no birds. I could hear a chaffinch and a robin and that was it! I stood by the sea and watched the sun setting into streaks of red and pink – it was particularly beautiful this evening. Back at the car, two mallards waddled towards me. I had no cake or bread to offer them, so I threw them a handful of grain, but they didn't seem to want this!
 Me on the beach.

At mother's request I stopped to get her some chips in Hunstanton and then visited my parent's at Holme where my youngest sister Vivien was also visiting. Whizzed Vivien back to the train station and then went to the supermarket. Such an exciting day!!!

I note that there was a possible Fan-tailed Warbler heard at Minsmere RSPB today. Let's hope that it is confirmed tomorrow – the last one in East Anglia was in 1976 at Holme (which I saw). This will draw the crowds – I wouldn't mind seeing a second one!!!

Last Sunday's pictures now added - scroll down to the 9th March.


SUNSET 
Snettisham Coastal Park

New Warden at Walsey Hills NOA!

From the NOA Website:
"The NOA's new weekend Warden at Walsey Hills, David Bratt, reserve began his new post today, with a Merlin and 3 singing Chiffchaffs seen, together with 3 Common Lizards basking in the sun!"

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Iceland Gull at Sheringham, Salthouse & Blakeney Harbour
Black-necked Grebe at Snettisham RSPB
Glossy Ibis at Welney WWT
Little Gull at Rush Hill Scrape, Hickling Broad NWT
Great Northern Divers x 2, Hen Harrier at Blakeney Harbour
Coues's Arctic Redpoll OR Mealy Redpoll? in garden at Billingford, East Dereham
Common Cranes x 2 at Horsey
Snow Buntings x 2 at North Beach, Winterton

Other News
Unconfirmed report of possible
FAN-TAILED WARBLER
Minsmere RSPB from Bittern Hide (heard only).


MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO – remains, 1.5 miles SSW of Tenby at Giltar Point, Pembrokeshire, South Wales.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

Friday, 14 March 2014

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert' 
Great White Egret at Cley NWT
Great White Egret viewable from Walsey Hills NOA
Common Scoter flew over East Wretham Heath
Black-necked Grebe at Snettisham RSPB
Wheatear at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse
Crossbills x 3 at Sheringham
Hen Harriers x 3 at Titchwell RSPB


MEGA NEWS!
MEGA! GREAT SPOTTED CUCKOO – remains, 1.5 miles SSW of Tenby at Giltar Point, Pembrokeshire, South Wales.

MEGA! AMERICAN COOT – remains at Loch Flemington, Highland, Scotland

STOP PRESS! New Cafe at Holme Dunes NWT!

OPEN on 18th April until 2nd November!

Good news and bad news – that's how I see it! Good, if it were full of birders – good place to catch up, chin wag etc etc. BUT sadly I fear this will only increase the beach dudes, with bucket, spades and dogs! I may be wrong, let's hope I am! Two seasonal jobs going too, not bad money at all either!

http://www.norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk/About-us/Vacancies.aspx

I will try and make a date in the diary to visit on opening day. 18th April is 'Good Friday' which is the start of my mini holiday. Hope to see lots of birders there! Lets pack it out! I hope they will be doing hot buttery cheese scones! I might visit Holme more often if they equal the Cley NWT scones!