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Tuesday, 26 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Update later.......

MAJOR ISSUES! Typing this on iphone. MacBook Pro Laptop won't switch on - a no entry sign flashing and a question mark afterwards is a sign of a hard disk issue when I googled it on my iPhone!  And guess what? It was a good few months ago when I last backed up my laptop on Apple Time Machine, so will have lost no end of pictures.  I really don't need this week and a bit before I go away and why did this happen this evening I've had four days off! How am I going to get to Cambridge or Norwich Apple Store when I'm at work all day tomorrow HELP!!!!!

Monday, 25 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Little Stints x 3, Curlew Sandpiper at Titchwell RSPB
White Stork presumed esc. east of Long Stratton
Pectoral Sandpiper, Curlew Sandpiper, Garganey at Potter Heigham Marshes
Little Stints x 2 west of Wells
Cattle Egret, Spoonbills x 2 at Warham Greens
Yellow-browed Warbler, Redwing at Thornham
Pied Flycatcher at Thornham Harbour
Pied Flycatcher, Purple Sandpiper, Snow Bunting at Thornham Point
Red-breasted Flycatcher at west end of pines, Great White Egret, Pied Flycatcher, Firecrest at Holkham
Pied Flycatchers x 2 at Holme Dunes NWT
Yellow-browed Warbler, Pied Flycatcher at Great Yarmouth Cemetery
Continental Coal Tit (probable), Yellow-browed Warbler at Cromer
Caspian Gull, Whinchat at Salthouse
Pied Flycatcher at Waxham
Curlew Sandpiper at Kelling Water Meadows
Ring Ouzel at Trimingham
Pied Flycatcher, Little Stints x 5 at Cley NWT

MEGA NEWS
SWINHOE'S PETREL

probable, at sea off Staffin Bay, Isle of Sky

Weather for Monday and Tuesday!

Dizzee Rascal Ticket For Sale!

Dizzee Rascal Ticket – ONE for sale, due to holiday booked. 7.30pm Monday 9th October at The LCR, Norwich. £25.00 please, no offers (exactly what I paid for the ticket). Please email me: pennyclarke@dsl.pipex.com

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler Take 4, Bird Party, Red-breasted Flycatcher & More!

 RED-BREASTED FLYCATCHER
In the large sycamore tree, at the western edge of Holkham Pines
Found by Chris Deary


A beautiful day in Norfolk with light south easterly winds. I didn't spend long looking for the Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler – I've almost given up. Did I want to spend several hours staring at reeds or go off and find my own birds at Burnham Overy Dunes?

I left the few birders who had decided to sit it out and continued along the seawall to the bushes at the end of the boardwalk. A lovely flock of Golden Plover were chilling out in the sunshine, just west of the sea wall – I counted around 50 birds. No migrants in the scrub or the apple tree. I headed east through the dunes and sat by a gully surrounded by scrub and spindle bushes and saw a Wheatear in the dunes above. A Kestrel and a pair of Stonechats were also seen as I made my way east.

Bumped into Matthew S., Chris S. and Ian B. and had a brief catch-up – they had seen the Red-breasted Flycatcher in the large sycamore on the western edge of the pines (found by Chris Deary, thank you very much indeed) and were now heading back west to Burnham Overy. I continued on and went to view the large sycamore. I spent a long time sitting and waiting – staring at every sycamore leaf, walked round, sneaked in under the tree and stood motionless against the trunk hoping for a glimpse of the Red-breasted Flycatcher, but nothing. A Hobby bombed through and caught a dragonfly, right over my head at 4.45pm! Fabulous to see – but it was all so quick, I didn't even have time to lift the camera! I sat and had a sandwich and a cup of coffee. The midges were absolutely dire – attacking me like there was no tomorrow!

I climbed up the bank to view the sycamore from a different angle and watched a huge tit flock consisting of several Great Tits, Blue Tits, Coal Tits and at least a dozen Long-tailed Tits and a Goldcrest – all feeding and flitting around amongst the sycamore leaves. I felt very frustrated at not seeing the Red-breasted Fly, but I wasn't going to give up and I wasn't leaving until I had seen it! It took me an hour and a quarter before I caught a glimpse of the Red-breasted Flycatcher – suddenly I found it, perched on a large bough and looking stunning as they always do – it was 5.55pm when I first saw it. The light was not brilliant but managed to get some record shots before it disappeared again. There was a couple of Robins around too and had wonderful views of a Treecreeper sneaking up the main trunk of the same sycamore at 6.20pm. I heard Fieldfares and watched three birds land on the top of the pines, just west of the large sycamore – my first birds of the Autumn.

Made my way back through the dunes and saw the Stonechats again. Passed Jake G. and lady friend on their way to the see the RBFly – they would have been lucky to see it now with the light fading! Nothing else seen along the seawall, apart from a couple of Little Egrets flying east. At the gate on the corner, I dropped down to the lower path to walk back to my car and bumped into Matthew again and Drew L. who were standing at the Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler spot – Matthew had thought he saw the bird a bit earlier, but couldnt' be sure. I chatted to them about my forthcoming Shetland trip and declared that if someone found a Siberian Rubythroat in Norfolk whilst I was away, I would never leave the county again! I continued along the track back to my car and disturbed a Barn Owl sitting on the fence by the stile, just before the main road.

Popped into visit my mother briefly – took her some requested chips from Eric's Chip shop at the farm complex in Thornham. I managed to catch the cat in the garden, take it indoors and de-flea it (overdue) before it realised what was happening! Good day all round! Monday and Tuesday off – east winds, migrants – here we go!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Curlew Sandpiper, Osprey at Breydon Water
Cattle Egret, Osprey east of Stiffkey
White Stork presumed esc. east of Long Stratton
Red-breasted Flycatcher at west end of pines, Yellow-browed Warbler west of Lady Ann's Drive at Holkham
Hawfinch, Pied Flycatcher, Yellow-browed Warbler, Little Stints x 5, Spoonbills x 3, Snow Bunting at Titchwell RSPB
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER around sea wall/sluice area at Burnham Overy Staithe
Yellow-browed Warbler at Sidestrand
Great White Egret at Holme Dunes NWT
Hawfinch at The Nunnery, Thetford
GREENISH WARBLER probable, in garden along cliff top at Cromer
Little Stints x 10, Curlew Sandpipers x 3 at Cley NWT
Honey Buzzard at Winterton
Little Stints x 2 west of Wells
Ring Ouzel at North Burlingham
Yellow-browed Warbler south of golf course at Old Hunstanton
Lapland Bunting at Weybourne Camp
Short-eared Owl at Thornham Harbour
Curlew Sandpiper, Garganey x 3 at Hockwold Washes, Lakenheath
Pied Flycatcher at Hemsby
Water Pipit at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB
Quail flew over field at Kelling Water Meadows

MEGA NEWS
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER 
Burnham Overy Staithe, Norfolk
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER 
Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland

Fat Birder Web Stats & Blog Issues Sorted!

Since 8th September there had been an issue with my link to the Fat Birder Website, my ranking is normally at around No.10 in the "Birding Top 1000" websites! For some unknown reason the F.B website was not recognising my actual daily views, so I dropped like a stone in their rankings to as far as 97! BUT in reality I didn't, my Stats for my blog remained the same.

Both Bo Beolens who runs Fat Birder and a man called Simon on the Blogger Help Forums have spent a huge amount of their time, trying to work out what was going on and I would like to thank them both enormously for the time they have put in to assist me. Simon finally nailed it and discovered that in my Settings on Blogger I had https: switched to 'yes' when it should have said 'no' – it was as simple as that! Since changing this I have steadily climbed up the rankings again – not quite made it my usual No. 10 slot, but not far off!

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Final Trip to Cambridge!

I didn't feel like joining the crowds at Burnham Overy Staithe this morning, even though I still haven't seen the Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler – its not been seen today at all, so good job I didn't bother. Instead, I made my last trip to Cambridge, I had to go anyway, three items needed returning and the winds look better for migrants from Sunday onwards, so it had to be done today. My best buy of the day was a weird and wonderful goose down hat, which is the lightest and non itchy hat ever! Paid a little visit to the Apple Store! I'm all shopped out now! Had late lunch in The Rainbow Cafe and then caught the 7.35pm train home.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Yellow-browed Warbler, Pied Flycatcher, Little Stints x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
Barred Warbler, Pied Flycatcher, Spoonbills x 2 on Monday at Scolt Head Island NNR
Curlew Sandpipers x 3, Spotted Redshanks x 3, Hen Harrier at Breydon Water
Baltic Gull (possible), in roost, Caspian Gulls x 3, Little Stints x 12, Curlew Sandpipers x 4 at Cley NWT
Pectoral Sandpiper, Great White Egret, Little Stints x 2 at Potter Heigham Marshes
Cattle Egret east of Stiffkey
White Stork east of Long Stratton
Great White Egret, Great Northern Diver at Holme
Curlew Sandpiper at Hockwold Washes
Short-eared Owl at Thornham Harbour

MEGA NEWS 
FEA'S, DESERTAS OR ZINO'S PETREL
flew past Toe Head, County Cork, Ireland
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER
Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland

Friday, 22 September 2017

FOUR DAYS HOLIDAY!

I have another four days off! It looks like I might have hit it right. South east winds from 5pm on Saturday all the way through until Thursday next week!!!

ORIOLE BIRDING!

Birdwatching Tours and Wildlife Holidays
UK & Worldwide 

Oriole Birding offer birdwatching and wildlife holidays worldwide, including a comprehensive range of UK birding tours specialising in Norfolk.

HOT NEWS! HOLIDAY BOOKED!

Re my post on the 11th September "The Most Exciting News Ever"

Ok so maybe this title was a little over the top, but to me is does feel like the most exciting news ever! My Hot news is, that I'm going AWAY on a proper holiday for the first time since May 2010!!! I'm so excited I don't know where to begin!!! I'm booked to go on an rare bird finding tour on Shetland with ORIOLE BIRDING! Norfolk birder and Tour Leader Ashley Saunders will be leading the group, leaving on 8th October and returning on 20th October. It includes time on south Shetland and on Unst!!! I still can't believe I'm going, it hasn't quite sunk in yet. Now you know, why I have been buying loads of new gear!

https://www.oriolebirding.com/shetland---island-autumn-magic-tourmore-115.html

When I return on the 20th October, I still have another week's holiday (booked three weeks in all this Autumn) for birding in Norfolk!!! Will I get to see my first Siberian Rubythroat? Shetland or Norfolk, I don't mind which! That would be an incredible end to a utterly crap beginning of the year!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Serin flew south over Heacham
Slavonian Grebe on sea, Little Stints x 2, Short-eared Owl, Hen Harrier at Holme
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER around sea wall/sluice area at Burnham Overy Staithe
Short-eared Owl, Curlew Sandpipers x 2, Spotted Redshanks x 2 at Breydon Water
Yellow-browed Warbler, Great Northern Divers x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
Little Stints x 10, Curlew Sandpipers x 3, Spoonbills x 6, Red-necked Phalarope at Cley NWT
Woodlark flew over Beeston Common, Sheringham
Little Stints x 2 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB
White Stork NNE of Long Stratton
Cattle Egret east of Stiffkey

MEGA NEWS
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER 
Lower Stoneybrek, Fair Isle
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER 
Burnham Overy Staithe, Norfolk
YELLOW-BREASTED BUNTING
 

Out Skerries, Shetland

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Mid-Week Update & iPhone Accident!

Sadly there has been no "Take 4" attempt at trying to see the Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler at Burnham Overy Staithe so far! Tuesday evening I had to go over to mother's house to help her move furniture/stuff around, in preparation of her Park Ray fire being taken out by a plumber on Wednesday. Still exhausted from twitching, I then had to go over again on Wednesday evening after work to help her hoover up, put everything back to how it was etc. As I left my house to go to mother's on Wednesday evening, I dropped my iphone on the concrete slabs on my drive – I was mortified to see that the screen had completely shattered to the degree that I could hardly read the screen! Obviously a few swear words were said at that point!

I spent ages trying to speak to the Apple Store in Cambridge, but the phone call automatically takes you to an Apple Adviser and although they were very helpful, I would rather have spoken to a member of staff in the actual store. Anyway, so my screen can be repaired for a whopping £136.00 and I have to make an appointment, but they didn't have any appointments on Saturday, but if I arrived at the store first thing, I should have a good chance of getting it done. After returning home from mother's on Wednesday evening, I put out a request on Facebook for any local phone repairers and my work colleagues Bev Eady and Simon Blatch both recommended "Norfolk Phone Repairs" in Gaywood – thank you both.

So, after work this evening I went to the phone repair shop in Gaywood who were absolutely brilliant. Not only did they replace the screen within quarter of a hour of me waiting, it only cost £65! Yes, that is still alot of dosh, but tons cheaper than Apple! Excellent service, 5 minutes from my house and they are open until 8pm each evening, thank you so much!

I then returned home, sat on the sofa for 5 minutes and was woken up by a phone call from mother at 9.30pm! No dinner, no jobs done, cream crackered! Hot news tomorrow evening!!!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Purple Sandpiper at Hunstanton
Little Stints x 7, Curlew Sandpipers x 3 at Cley NWT
Curlew Sandpiper at Breydon Water
Common Cranes x 3 at Welney WWT
Yellow-browed Warbler, Wood Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank at Titchwell RSPB
Honey Buzzard at Great Ryburgh
Cattle Egret east of Stiffkey
Spoonbills x 3 at Stiffkey Fen
Snow Bunting at Salthouse
Little Stints x 14 at Potter Heigham Marshes
Pied Flycatcher at Sculthorpe Moor Nature Reserve
Curlew Sandpiper at Kelling Water Meadows
Lapland Bunting flew past Weybourne Camp
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER around sea wall/sluice area (1.30pm-2.30pm only) at Burnham Overy Staithe
White Stork east of Long Stratton

MEGA NEWS
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER

Burnham Overy Staithe, Norfolk
YELLOW-BREASTED BUNTING
Out Skerries, Shetland
YELKOUAN SHEARWATER

probable, flew past The Lizard, Cornwall

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER around sea wall/sluice area at Burnham Overy Staithe
Curlew Sandpipers x 2 at Breydon Water
Little Stints x 9, Curlew Sandpipers x 2, Short-eared Owl, Caspian Gulls x 2 at Cley NWT
Great White Egret at Titchwell RSPB
Osprey flew over Snettisham Coastal Park
Yellow-browed Warbler, Fieldfare at North Dunes, Winterton
Cattle Egret east of Stiffkey
Yellow-browed Warbler at Wensum Sports Centre, Norwich
Yellow-browed Warbler at Duck Pond, Salthouse
Yellow-browed Warbler at Weybourne Camp
Pectoral Sandpiper, Little Stints x 14 at Potter Heigham Marshes 
GREENISH WARBLER in area with no general access at Sheringham
Little Stints x 2 at Buckenham Marshes

MEGA NEWS
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER
 
Burnham Overy Staithe, Norfolk
YELLOW-BREASTED BUNTING
Out Skerries, Shetland
SIBERIAN THRUSH
Baltasound, Unst, Shetland
FORSTER'S TERN
Soldier's Point, County Louth, Ireland

RBA Weekly Round-Up 13th to 19th September!

By Jon Dunn
https://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/v2/Content/WeeklyRoundup2017-38.aspx?s_id=259509606

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER around sea wall/sluice area (but no further sign by mid-afternoon) + Yellow-browed Warbler at Burnham Overy Staithe
Cattle Egret east of Stiffkey
Little Stints x 8, Curlew Sandpiper at Cley NWT
Curlew Sandpiper at Breydon Water
Red-breasted Flycatcher, Yellow-browed Warbler at The Plantation, + Yellow-browed Warblers x 2 in tamarisk by Old Laboratory, Blakeney Point
Spoonbills x 9 at Stiffkey Fen
Common Cranes x 7 at Welney WWT
Yellow-browed Warbler at Weybourne Camp
Glossy Ibis on 9th September on lagoon at Wissington Beet Factory
Curlew Sandpiper at Kelling Water Meadows
Osprey flew NE over Muckleburgh Hill
Yellow-browed Warbler, Pied Flycatcher, Great White Egret, Little Stints x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
Marsh Warbler (possible) at Gramborough Hill
Common Cranes x 8 at Hickling Broad NWT
Little Stints x 11 at Potter Heigham Marshes

MEGA NEWS 
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER
Burnham Overy Staithe, Norfolk

Monday, 18 September 2017

Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler Take 3!

I managed to park at the very same spot by the harbour, as I did this morning. I was quite shocked to see so many cars surrounded by sea water – also the high tide had not peaked yet! I phoned RBA to put a message out to birders.
Cars flooded by high tide at Burnham Overy Staithe Harbour car park


I started walking out along the sea wall and did not run this evening – there was no energy left for running – I was drained! Connor Rand passed me, running I presume to his flooded car – he had seen the PJ Tips twice – lucky him! There were far more birders and Twitchers here than I imagined there would be this evening. I presumed that most people would have seen it already, whilst I had been at work, but it was an incredibly elusive bird and very hard to see and obviously can take several hours to bag. I joined LGRE and lots of other well known Twitchers and birders and the rest of the evening was incredibly frustrating. There was a nano second when the bird shot along the reeds and landed next to the base of a small rosehip bush, more or less in front of me, the second I put my bins up, the bird had sneaked away – the light was poor at this time. It more than probably was the PG Tips, but I saw nothing more than a silhouette – had it perched for a couple more seconds, I would have nailed it! A bit later on I saw a bird shoot out from some reeds and dive back in again – more than probably the bird, but again nothing more than a silhouette. THIRD DIP – walked back in the dark!

Went to mother's at Holme to pick up the on-line shopping list and arrived home too exhausted to even write my blog posts. Can't go and see the PG Tips on Tuesday evening, as have to help my mother move loads of things out of her dining room and put protective sheets over stuff as her Parkray fire is being taken out by a plumber on Wednesday morning.

Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler Take 2!

I can't remember what time I got up this morning, but it was dark! It killed me to do this, but I couldn't miss out on the opportunity of seeing this mega bird. If you snooze, you lose – as they say! I arrived at the Burnham Overy Staithe harbour area at about 5.30am – parked up on high ground by the boats along the left handside of the entrance to the harbour car park. Its not a good idea to park in the main car park if high tide is due, as your car is highly likely to be flooded, as others found out later this evening!

I rarely twitch a bird before work – especially when I start at 8.15am. The last time I can recall doing this was for the Great Snipe at Cley NWT in May 2011. It was cold, very cold first thing this morning with strong northerly winds. I walked along the seawall in the dark – it wasn't even dawn yet, never mind sunrise! I arrived at the location it was last seen last night at 5.50am – I was the first person here, but it wasn't too many minutes before I could see other figures appearing in the darkness. I was standing just west of the corner which meets up with the lower path from the A149 parking area – just north of this corner is the sluice.

The man who I had been standing with last night (along with Dave Appleton) joined me and then another birder turned up to join us. A group of approximately 7 or 8 birders who had walked up from the lower path, positioned themselves by the sluice. You would have thought they would have joined us, but for some reason they remained there. More and more birders started to turn up and joined the now large crowd by the sluice. I wanted to tell them that it was last seen where I was standing last night, but I couldn't risk leaving my spot – I could see it happening, bird appearing and me trying to run back, by which time the bird would have gone to ground again. I had such a small window of opportunity – I had to leave this spot by 7.20am at the extreme latest to give me time to walk back to the car and get to work on time. So, my plan was to tweet the information out – I have a large number of followers on Twitter, so hoped that one of them would see my tweet. I wrote the following: "First one here at 5.50 - no sign of PGTips at BOD by 6.50am so far! 36 people here - most standing in wrong spot!" – this plan worked beautifully..... within a couple of minutes the entire crowd was heading our way!

As the clock ticked away, I became more and more frustrated. Someone thought they had the Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler in the suada along the north side of the sea wall and everyone rushed to see it – I didn't move – it turned out to be a Wren. I was the first to arrive and the first to have to leave – it was torture, but I had to go. At 7.20am I speed walked back to my car. Every so often I turned and glanced back at the crowd – each time I looked, I saw no excitement, so it hadn't been seen yet!

I arrived at work not only on time, but a little early! Got changed at work and managed to get through the day. Naturally the bird was seen after I left – at 9.27am, by the gate on the corner, bang in the middle of the initial two groups of birders. I had heard through the grapevine that possibly some of the sightings throughout the day were not confirmed.

At the end of my working day, I was very kindly allowed to leave off 15 minutes early (time to be made up tomorrow) to collect and pay for my new AKU walking boots from Morston Country Sports in Holt – the shop closes at 5pm and the owner had kindly agreed to keep the shop open until 5.15pm for me, which was very kind of him indeed. I made it just in time! I tried these boots on recently but didn't buy them as they were insanely expensive. After trying just about every boot I could find locally and in Cambridge – nothing felt as good as those boots, so phoned up to reserve them. I am now the owner of the most comfortable walking boots I have ever owned! I was also given a pack of three pairs of Grisport walking socks and a Nikwax Fabric and Leather Proofing spray – fabulous. Also purchased a pair of Northface waterproof trousers whilst here too – there is a very good reason why I have been buying lots of new gear recently. All will be revealed by the end of the week!
My new AKU Alterra GTX Anthracite/Magenta walking boots
Purchased from Morston Country Sports in Holt

Popped into Budgens to buy a snack and was then going to drive home – I was beyond exhausted. But instead, I decided to have a third attempt at the Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler! I had no intentions in going again this evening, but knew that I had to go, if I wanted a chance of seeing this mega. It was annoying that I had to pick these boots up this evening, as Burnham Overy Staithe is much closer to King's Lynn than it is to Holt! I also had to get the on-line food shop from mother's later on – I was going to have to dig very deep into my energy reserves tank!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER around sea wall/sluice area of Burnham Overy Staithe
Curlew Sandpiper, Short-eared Owl at Bredyon Water
Sabine's Gull flew past Hunstanton Cliffs
ARCTIC WARBLER, Yellow-browed Warbler at Wells Woods
Cory's Shearwater flew past Sheringham
Cattle Egret south of A149, Stiffkey
Grey Phalarope on pool next to Gramborough Hill, Salthouse
Little Stint at Buckenham Marshes
Yellow-browed Warbler at Wells Woods
Red-breasted Flycatcher, Yellow-browed Warbler at The Plantation, Blakeney Point
Yellow-browed Warbler, Great White Egrets x 2 at Holkham
Rose-coloured Starling juv at South Beach, Heacham
Snow Bunting at Kelling Heath
Little Stints x 2, Little Gull at Titchwell RSPB
Curlew Sandpiper, Snow Bunting, Little Stints x 11, Caspian Gulls x 2 at Cley NWT
Little Stint, Curlew Sandpiper at Hunstanton
Yellow-browed Warbler at Thorpe St Andrew, Norwich

MEGA NEWS
BLACK-BILLED CUCKOO

Walls, Shetland
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER 
Burnham Overy Staithe, Norfolk

Gramborough Hills, Warham Greens, East Hills, Little Dip & A HUMONGOUS Dip!

Started the day off at CleySpy and bought a few sale items. Headed to Beach Road, Salthouse and walked to Gramborough Hill to find some migrants. Nothing here at all, aside from a few Linnets and a Stonechat. Whilst here, news of an Arctic Warbler in Wells Woods broke! I think the last one I saw was on 11th September in 2010 at Holme – click to see my account and pictures.

Headed west to continue searching for my own birds. Parked up on the concrete pad at Garden Drove at Warham Greens. Three cars here already. It was exciting walking along the hedge lined track and the noise of hundreds if not thousands of honey bees buzzing around the ivy blossom was wonderful. One LBJ on route and 1 Robin. At the bottom of the track I discovered Mark Golley and Graham Etherington intently watching something – a Yellow-browed Warbler, which I managed to get a very brief view of, thanks.

Ventured out to East Hills with John Furse and Andy (don't know surname). It was my idea to search for migrants here. Me and my bright ideas! #mistake There had to be something out there today, surely? Initially there was a flurry of excitement with a Spotted Flycatcher and a Redstart in the same clump of dead pines. The sycamore glade beckoned and the excitement built – nothing in here, not a single bird, I was shocked. A Chiffchaff, Blackbird with white feather, a Robin and a Wren were the only other birds seen at this point. Further along we saw a second Flycatcher and that was it, not even a Yellow-browed Warbler!

I hate being on East Hills, when something big turns up – initially as a probable, but eventually confirmed as a MEGA – A PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER was found along the sea wall at Burnham Overy Staithe by Norfolk birder Stuart White! My heart sank. In my frustration and hysteria and not being on the 'mainland' I didn't read the pager messages correctly – I thought they said 3/4 miles east of the seawall, which to me meant somewhere in the dunes. Therefore I concluded that I wouldn't have time to walk out there, after returning from East Hills. I tried to ring several birders whom I thought might be on site, to out find the exact location of this bird, but no one answered their phones. So, believing I didn't have time to get out to the dunes with failing light, I opted for the Arctic Warbler at Wells Woods instead.

Paid my £2.00 fee for parking in Wells Woods Car park. On route to the Arctic Warbler I bumped into Andrew Bloomfield who said he had heard that the Pallass's Grasshopper Warbler was somewhere by the sluice!! OMG, if had realised that, I wouldn't have bothered with the Arctic Warbler. Frustrated, I carried on a few more yards and caught up with John Furse and Andy who had just seen the Arctic Warbler. After not seeing the Arctic Warbler and getting increasingly frustrated, I promptly left and speed walked back to my car. Flew west along the A149 to Burnham Overy Staithe and slung my car in the staithe car park. I have no idea what time it was at this point.

Speed walked and ran along the sea wall, passing two smiling happy birders who had both just seen the PGTips. Struggling to breathe whilst running, but determined to keep up the pace. I have never seen a Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler anywhere, a bird I have dreamed of seeing and to see one in Norfolk would be incredible. As I run, I can see the crowd dispersing and heading back along the path south to the A149 and this leaves only two people. As I get nearer I see that one of the two birders is Dave Appleton (an excellent Norfolk birder), he is standing looking down in the brambles/reeds and I hope and pray. 'Is it showing?' I ask.... 'not at the moment' Dave replies. Someone had been playing a tape a short while ago – the bird appeared, but had not surfaced since. Was this because of the tape? Or, because it was now roosting? I'll probably never know. I stood there with my bins raised, not taking my eyes off the brambles – all I needed was a few seconds of viewing to say I have seen my first ever Pallas's Grasshopper Warbler. I pleaded with the bird to show itself #desperate My heart was sinking fast. I could not believe I wasn't going to see this mega bird. I was close to tears to be honest. The other birder (don't know who) hadn't seen it either. We remained until we couldn't see anything and then trudged back to the car park. I was pleased for Dave though – it was a lifer for him! I drove home in a very sad state. Its no good anyone trying to console me by saying that its only a bird – its not only a bird, its a bloody PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER!!!

The saddest birding day EVER. Gutted is a understatement. Pity we can't have emergency leave at work for a bird I've never seen before, a bird that I have dreamed of seeing – CRAP DAY! Goodbye East Hills!!! No doubt there will be some 'showing well' messages on the pager in the morning, whilst I am at work!

Sunday, 17 September 2017

PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER at Burnham Overy Staithe!

Massive congratulations to Norfolk birder Stuart White who found this MEGA bird!!! Also for putting the news out promptly and also congratulations to all those that managed to see this bird before darkness fell.

After running and speed walking I very sadly I dipped by seconds. Gutted is an understatement, the saddest birding day I can recall. Note to self, don't bother going to East Hills to find your own birds or anywhere else for that matter!

PICTURES HERE:
http://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/RealData/gallery_show.asp?GalleryID=54085

https://twitter.com/Oriole_Ashley/status/909468751262883840

https://twitter.com/norfolkbirdtour/status/909473360450654208

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Red-necked Phalarope, Curlew Sandpiper, Snow Bunting, Spoonbill at Cley NWT
Great White Egret flew over Thornham
Yellow-browed Warbler near The Green, Thornham
Red-necked Phalarope, Great White Egret, Purple Sandpiper at Titchwell RSPB
Black Redstart at Cockley Cley
Pied Flycatcher, Yellow-browed Warbler at Holkham Pines
Yellow-browed Warbler near Lady Ann's Drive, Holkham
ARCTIC WARBLER, Yellow-browed Warbler at Wells Woods
Great White Egret, Little Stints x 2, Short-eared Owl at Holme Dunes NWT
Yellow-browed Warbler at Sheringham
LANCEOLATED WARBLER on Friday, also Wryneck yesterday for 3rd day at Blakeney Point
Lesser Emperor Dragonfly near coastal path at Trimingham
Spoonbills x 11 at Stiffkey Fen
Cattle Egret east of Stiffkey
Yellow-browed Warbler, Hen Harrier at Warham Greens
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER
Massive congratulations to finder Stuart White!
North East of Burnham Overy Staithe
Rose-coloured Starling juv. at Snettisham Coastal Park
Corncrake, Yellow-browed Warbler at Hemsby
Little Stints x 2, Curlew Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper at Kelling Water Meadows
Redstart at East Hills, Wells

MEGA NEWS
PALLAS'S GRASSHOPPER WARBLER

Burnham Overy Staithe, Norfolk
LANCEOLATED WARBLER 
On Friday at Blakeney Point, Norfolk
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER
 

Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland
AMERICAN REDSTART
 

Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Hot Birding Tomorrow!

With the torrential rain and north east winds today and continued north east winds all day tomorrow – it should be an excellent day all round. I'm out birding ALL day – makes a change!

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

HIGH TIDES
http://www.kingslynnport.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Kings-Lynn-HW-BST-2017-July-Dec.pdf

https://www.tidetimes.org.uk/wells-tide-times

Big Spending Spree!

Yes, I should have been birding today, but I had to finish off my big shop for Autumn/Winter gear before the birds get really serious – mind you, can it get much more serious than a Lanceolated Warbler on Blakeney Point..... yesterday?! 😢I've never seen one anywhere.

Last night I flew over to my mother's to pick up three sacks of old paint tins and my first job this morning was to take them to the Recycling depot in King's Lynn, where there was a special event to dispose of household hazardous waste free of charge (all weekend). When I arrived at the depot, mother had added far more than tins of old paint in the sacks, which meant I had to rummage through and put all and sundry in different skips, which meant I didn't get away as quickly as I would have liked. Destination: Cambridge again!

On route with the sat nav, I ended up going through Watlington before getting onto the A10 when something bizarre happened. I was sitting at a T-junction waiting to turn right onto the A10, any other traffic should have been behind me or to my left to turn left – I was just about to turn right when a STUPID woman positioned herself close to my left and indicating right, pulled out across and in front of me to overtake me!!! No wonder there are road rage incidents! I was so gobsmacked, that I didn't even have time to give her any verbal abuse or shake my fists! After crossing in front of me, she than drove along the main road only a few yards before turning off left down a minor road and out of view. I'm glad I didn't have to drive behind her along the A10, I would have been tempted to overtake her! She needs to go back to driving school asap!

I decided to trial the park and ride at Milton (just north of Cambs) instead of going on the train this morning – I won't be doing this a second time! It took me longer to get to Milton than the train would have taken to get to Cambridge and I had queue to get in the park and ride! The train costs £7.50 return, the park and ride cost £1 to park and £3 for return bus fare to city centre and the cost of my petrol from my King's Lynn – comes to far more than £7.50!

I looked around all the outdoor wear shops, but ended up at Cotswold Outdoor where I bought a new pair of work of work trainers, which I desperately needed, new walking boots, the best wellingtons EVER – a pair of Muck Boot Arctic Sport unisex boots, new coat: a RAB jacket in black. I'm fed up with khaki green – black is the new green! Base layers, new Bridgedale socks, 2 new fleeces, a pair of waterproof over trousers and a waterproof light Gortex coat as the RAB coat is only showerproof. I also treated myself to a stunning designer ring by Gail Klevan, which I saw two trips ago in Cambridge and it was still there, it was obviously mean't to be for me!

I walked back to the designated park and ride bus stop in torrential rain – hair dripping wet as I got on the bus. Back at the car park, I had a coffee, before making the long journey home in miserable driving conditions, arriving back around 8.15pm.

Trying some of my purchases on again at home, I have changed my mind about three items! The Scarpa boots are not as roomy width wise as I first thought, so plan B is to buy a pair of boots I fell in love with in Morston Country Sports in Holt a week ago – I didn't buy them as they were insanely expensive, but I'm going back for them – life is too short! I didn't realise until I got home that the light Gortex coat does not have a 2 way zip and the Velcro around the wrists does allow me to wrap the cuffs tight (man's coat) – I tried this item on in haste just before the shop closed as I also did with the waterproof over trousers which are too big. So I will have to return to Cambridge again!

Police seize car as drones take to Norfolk’s skies for the first time in hunt for hare coursers

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/crime/police-seize-car-as-drones-take-to-norfolk-s-skies-for-the-first-time-in-hunt-for-hare-coursers-1-5197561

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Red-necked Phalarope, Little Stints x 2, Curlew Sandpiper, Snow Bunting at Cley NWT
Cory's Shearwater (probable), Sooty Shearwater, Red-necked Grebe, Pomarine Skua at Cley
Yellow-browed Warbler, Red-necked Phalarope, Black Tern, Great White Egret, Purple Sandpiper, Little Stints x 12, Curlew Sandpiper, Spoonbills x 5 at Titchwell RSPB
LANCEOLATED WARBLER unconfirmed report, yesterday at Blakeney Point
Redwing at Blakeney Point
Yellow-browed Warblers x 2, Pied Flycatcher at Wells Woods
Black Terns x 2 at Holme
Pied Flycatcher at Holkham Pines
Gannet flew north over The Nunnery, Thetford
Little Stints x 2, Curlew Sandpiper at Salthouse
Little Stints x 3, Curlew Sandpiper at Kelling Water Meadows

MEGA NEWS
LANCEOLATED WARBLER

Yesterday, unconfirmed report at Blakeney Point, Norfolk
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER
Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland
AMERICAN REDSTART
Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Happy Birthday Pete!

Hope you've had a fabulous birthday and see some good birds tomorrow with Graham!

Best Wishes Penny X

Friday, 15 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Short-eared Owl at Thornham Marsh
Great White Egret, Little Stints x 3, Curlew Sandpiper, Garganey, Spotted Redshank, Spoonbill at Titchwell RSPB
Little Stint at Breydon Water
Pomarine Skua, Black Tern at Holme
Pomarine Skuas x 2 at Weybourne
Great White Egret at Pensthorpe Waterfowl Park
Grey Phalarope, Sooty Shearwaters x 2, Pomarine Skua, Black Guillemot, Balearic Shearwater at Sheringham
Sooty Shearwater off beach at Cley
Snow Bunting, Little Stint at Cley NWT
Caspian Gull at Gorleston-on-Sea
Little Stint at Potter Heigham Marshes
Little Stint, Curlew Sandpiper at Kelling Water Meadows
Snow Bunting at Cromer

MEGA NEWS
AMERICAN REDSTART 
Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

Thursday, 14 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Manx Shearwater found dead, Thorpe Marshes, Haddiscoe
Pomarine Skuas x 5, Velvet Scoters x 2, Black Tern, Great Skuas x 199, Short-eared Owls x 2 at Holme
Sooty Shearwaters x 5, Pomarine Skua, Black Tern, Velvet Scoter, Short-eared Owl at Sheringham
Yellow-browed Warbler, Pectoral Sandpiper at Titchwell RSPB
Balearic Shearwater, Little Stint, Spoonbill at Cley NWT
Leach's Petrels x 3 flew past Winterton
Black Tern flew past Hunstanton
Sooty Shearwaters x 4 at Happisburgh
Pomarine Skua at Weybourne
Pomarine Skua, Long-tailed Skuas x 3 at Blakeney Point
Pomarine Skua, Long-tailed Skua, Pomarine Skua at Eccles-on-Sea
Yellow-browed Warbler at Waxham
Little Stints x 3 at Rush Hill Scrape, Hickling Broad NWT

MEGA NEWS
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER
 

Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland
AMERICAN REDSTART

Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
WEDNESDAY 23rd SEPTEMBER 
Black Terns x 3, Spoonbill at Snettisham RSPB
Cory's Shearwater & Long-tailed Skua flew past beach, Pectoral Sandpiper, Curlew Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank at Cley NWT
Balearic Shearwater flew past Happisburgh
Black Terns x 2, Sooty Shearwater, Spoonbills x 3, Little Stints x 2, Spotted Redshanks x 7 at Titchwell RSPB
Leach's Petrel, Long-tailed Skuas x 7, Sooty Shearwater flew past Winterton
Black Tern few past Weybourne Camp
Wood Sandpipers x 2, Spoonbills x 2 at Potter Heigham Marshes
Black Tern, Short-eared Owls x 2 at Holme
Short-eared Owl at Stiffkey

MEGA NEWS
FORSTER'S TERN

Soldier's Point, County Louth, Ireland
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER
Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland
AMERICAN REDSTART
Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

RBA Weekly Round-Up 6th to 12th September!

By Jon Dunn
https://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/v2/Content/WeeklyRoundup2017-37.aspx?s_id=94614061

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

A Gremlin In The Rankings!

Well, there are some very odd and strange things going on indeed (as I said in yesterday's post). My views each day on my blog are increasing and yet my Fatbirder Widget/rankings is saying the opposite! Since last Friday morning I lost my No.10 place, where I have been for a good few weeks and dramatically fell to No.19 in a few hours. This has never happened before and this continued until I dropped to No.29 this morning and now to No.40.

I'm not too bothered as my stats on my blog say the opposite – nothing has changed at all on my Blogger stats and I have the same amount of readers/views as I normally do. Now, after much conversing with Bo Beolens (poor man!) I think Bo is possibly getting to the bottom of it..... apparently my Birding Top 1000 Widget is not registering the correct number of views, because a code in incorrect. But the strange thing is, that I have input the code correctly, but when you hover over the widget (live view), the code reads differently and has 'googleusercontent' added to it. Bo said that this might be why its not registering all the actual views I get. There is a way of removing this, but he doesn't know how and has advised me to contact Blogger help, which I have done – currently waiting for assistance! So, it looks like Blogger has changed something last week, to make this happen, but I don't know what exactly yet!

Huge thanks to Bo Beolens for trying to work out what is going on!

Any computer geeks out there to help me find out what is going on? If there is, please me email at pennyclarke@dsl.pipex.com – THANKS!

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Muck Boots, Gramborough Hill & The East Bank!

I slept through three alarms set on my phone and woke up at an insane time – I'm too ashamed to say what the time was! Anyway, I'm blaming it all on the hard work I did on mother's pond yesterday! Pushed myself to get out of the door and headed to Fakenham Garden Centre to look at Muck Boots. Why am I buying new boots you ask.... long story! The garden centre only had one model in my size and I didn't want that particular model.

I then headed to Ernest Doe in Fakenham and fell in love (yes I have lost the plot) with a pair of wellies! First of all I tried on the Arctic Sport women's boot which were ok, apart from the back of the ankle moved around uncomfortably at every step I took. They always seem to make men's clothing and footwear much more comfortable, which is why I buy nearly all my outdoor clothes etc from the men's section and I know many female birders that do the same. I tried on a pair of Muckmaster men's boots, that looked like a very sturdy farmer's boot with a very thick sole and they fitted like they were made for me! But, being vain, I wanted my new wellies in black. I am waiting to try on the Arctic Sport Boot (in black) in mens, which looks like the same sole as on the Muckmaster boot. I have a pair reserved for me to try on (not saying where!), so hopefully they will be perfect. I need to replace lots of my gear for this Autumn, my Paramo coat is badly worn and split, so therefore not waterproof and not worth repairing. I'm fed up with wearing khaki green and will be buying everything in black – my favourite colour. Black is the new green – I'm kicking off a new trend!

Next stop: Holt. Took some sandals back to Siddalls in the High Street, which I realised I wasn't going to wear now Autumn has set in – just made the 28 days to return them in time! Went into Morston Country Sports and tried on walking boots (my Grisport walking shoes need replacing). I tried on a wonderful pair of boots – a brand I have never heard of: AKU which are Italian footwear. They felt so good, but then I saw the price £174.95! I have expensive tastes – they must have been the most expensive pair of boots in the shop! I left them in the shop to think about it! Quick visit to CleySpy and then on to Salthouse and Cley.

Parked up at Beach Road to walk to Gramborough Hill and bumped into the hill's 'keeper': Mr Furse!!! One Meadow Pipit, a flock of Linnets and 2 Wheatears were the only birds of note seen here. Gramborough Hill is looking red hot for Autumn birding! John pointed out the National Trust fence around the bottom/west side of the hill, to 'help the vegetation grow more' stated the notice board. This fence was put up to protect breeding birds in the Spring, but doesn't need to be up now in most (if not all) people's opinions locally. The vegetation is not going to grow any taller than it is already, in my opinion (and others) – it's more than probably because they can't be bothered to remove the fence – after all, it will save them having to erect it next Spring! This fenced area covers a massive area – an area where rares could be found in the Autumn and I can see many people ducking under the fence line anyway! John headed home east and I headed west.

East Bank, Cley. I ambled along the bank in hope of seeing the Pectoral Sandpiper, but couldn't find it. Best bird I found was a Greenshank. Lots of Wigeon and huge numbers of Greylag Geese on the marshes around The Serpentine. Other birds seen: Marsh Harrier, Little Egret, Heron, Lapwings, Teal, Mallard, Gadwall and tons of Gulls on Arnold's Marsh. Heard Bearded Tits pinging on the west side of the bank. Just as I was about to leave, I found the Pectoral Sandpiper at 7.18pm precisely! The light was far too dismal to even attempt any photographs though. I headed back along the East Bank to my car and re-located to the car park at the bottom of Old Woman's Lane. Poured myself a coffee and waited for the gull watchers from Dauke's Hide to say hello. Eddie M. and Andy J. both appeared in the failing light and we all had a catch up before I headed for home.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Black Tern flew past Cromer
Great White Egret, Little Stints x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
Pectoral Sandpiper at Cley NWT
Long-tailed Skua flew past Cley
Black Tern juv. at Snettisham RSPB
Cattle Egret, Spoonbills x 36 at Stiffkey Fen
Wood Sandpipers x 4, Garganey x 8 at Potter Heigham Marshes
Osprey at Ranworth Broad

MEGA NEWS 
AMERICAN REDSTART
Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

Monday, 11 September 2017

The Most Exciting News EVER!

I have had the weekend, today and tomorrow off work, but have been very, very busy organising all sorts of things in preparation for some very exciting news! I can't reveal my news just yet, but all will be revealed soon!

I spent Saturday in Cambridge, collecting my sister Lucy's violin from 'Cambridge Strings', who changed the bridge on her violin, replaced two strings, a tail piece and re-strung her bow. So at least that is all sorted now.

There has been some very, very strange things going on in the world of rankings. My blog has been at No. 10 on the Fatbirder "Birding Top 1000" for a good while now and suddenly on Thursday evening/Friday morning it dropped to No.19 and then then again to something like No.32. My ratings have remained consistently the same, when I have checked my stats, but on the Fatbirder website they apparently dropped massively for a few days only – Bo Boelens (who owns/runs Fatbirder) has been very kind in trying to find out the cause, but we are no further forward! I did lots of homework and found out that if someone hacks into your blog, it can have that effect, so I immediately changed my password to something very long and complicated and since found it that it has not been hacked into! I contacted blogger, but didn't get any replies that assisted me. Bo reckons that I have must have had some kind of server outage. I seem to be climbing back up again today, so all good!

Sunday and today, I have been organising things.....! Tonight I visited my mother to assist in dismantling her pond. You know when you wish you hadn't started something! The pond at the top of the garden was dug out, lined and created by my father and he had done a very good job – until a neighbour's labradors bounded across the meadow, into their garden, into the pond and destructed the lining of the pond – this was many, many years ago. The pond then had a permanent small leak and had to be topped up constantly. Since then it has deteriorated massively and is now just a putrid mess of stinking mud and hardly any water – I didn't realise how bad this was, until I attempted to clear it this evening. Mother had started dismantling it earlier in the week, but she shouldn't be doing this at her age and it is actually quite dangerous. I thought it would be a quick job, but discovered after removing at least 20 buckets of sludge, that its going to take considerably longer than I thought! I am using a Stanley knife to cut through the lining as I go along – I got splattered in mud and it took several hand washes to get rid of the stink AND I had been wearing waterproof gloves! I've only done half of the pond – will finish it on Sunday hopefully.

Tomorrow I am actually going birding!!! Shopping on route for Muckboot wellingtons, although no one in Norfolk seems to sell the Arctic Sport model I want, but I can buy it on line. Also popping into CleySpy. My now very old Paramo coat is worn, split and leaking and I will be buying a new coat for Autumn, but think I will buy a different brand this time.

NOA Annual Report 2016 Out Now!

Front Cover:
Great Knot at Gore Point – 26th June 2016 – Penny Clarke

Now available to purchase from the Norfolk Ornithologists' Association, at Holme Bird Observatory for £5.00, which to be honest is a bargain! A newly designed report – with a slight change on the back cover design (suggested by me😉) with a stunning picture of a Jack Snipe on the back cover by Greg Beeton. The illustrations by Dave Nurney are some of the best I've seen of his drawings, exquisite is the best word to sum them up! There is also a copy of the eulogy that my mother wrote for my father's funeral, illustrated with a picture of him and a full page picture of him on the last page of the report. Thanks to Chairman Steve Newman for his kind words in his 'Review of the Year'. Very nice report indeed, should cost more than a fiver really.

Pop into Holme Bird Observatory to purchase the new report or phone Sophie on 01485 525406 or email: info@noa.org.uk to find out how to get one sent to you. Obviously if you are already an NOA member, then yours should be in the post! Or alternatively join the NOA and get dawn 'til dusk access, seven days a week and access to all hides (£5 for key), the annual report and all news bulletins!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Pectoral Sandpiper,  Black Tern, Caspian Gulls x 2 at Cley NWT
Black Tern, Curlew Sandpipers x 3, Spoonbill at Snettisham RSPB
Little Stints x 2, Great Northern Diver, Spoonbill at Titchwell RSPB
Black Tern flew past Sheringham
Spoonbills x 2 at Stiffkey Fen

MEGA NEWS
LANCEOLATED WARBLER

Quendale, mainland, Shetland
GREAT SNIPE
Da Water, Fair Isle
AMERICAN REDSTART
 

Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

Roadside Nature Reserve in North Norfolk Now Home to Dozens of Species of Wildlife

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/environment/roadside-nature-reserve-in-north-norfolk-now-home-to-dozens-of-species-of-wildlife-1-5188535

Breckland Roost at Cavenham Heath is a Rare Chance to see the Secretive Stone Curlew with RSPB and Natural England!

http://www.edp24.co.uk/business/farming/breckland-roost-at-cavenham-heath-is-a-rare-chance-to-see-the-secretive-stone-curlew-with-rspb-and-natural-england-1-5186171

New Woodland Path Opens on Outskirts of King’s Lynn

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/environment/new-woodland-path-opens-on-outskirts-of-king-s-lynn-1-5183638

Could Solar ‘Storms’ Explain Whale Strandings on Beaches in Norfolk, Lincolnshire and Other North Sea Coasts?

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/environment/could-solar-storms-explain-whale-strandings-on-beaches-in-norfolk-lincolnshire-and-other-north-sea-coasts-1-5181585

Sunday, 10 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Red-backed Shrike at Snettisham Coastal Park
Pectoral Sandpiper, Pomarine Skua, Little Stint, Garganey at Cley NWT
Spoonbills x 44 at Stiffkey Fen
Curlew Sandpiper, Little Stint at Welney WWT
Wood Sandpiper at Wells
White Stork flew over Gramborough Hill, Salthouse
Great White Egret, Short-eared Owl at Holme Dunes NWT

MEGA NEWS
FEA'S OR DESERTAS PETREL

Carnsore Point, County Wexford, Ireland
AMERICAN REDSTART
Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

Saturday, 9 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Red-backed Shrike, Whinchat at Snettisham Coastal Park
Little Stint, Spotted Redshank at Breydon Water
Pectoral Sandpiper, Wood Sandpipers x 4, Garganey x 8, Common Crane at Potter Heigham Marshes
Spoonbills x 9, Short-eared Owl at Titchwell RSPB
Glossy Ibis flew over King's Lynn
Black Redstart at South Denes, Great Yarmouth
Pectoral Sandpiper, Spoonbill at Cley NWT
Wood Sandpiper at Wells
Little Stints x 2 at Welney WWT

MEGA NEWS
AMERICAN REDSTART
 

Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

Friday, 8 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Red-backed Shrike at Snettisham Coastal Park
Spoonbills x 9, Short-eared Owl, Osprey at Titchwell RSPB
Black Tern at Colney Gravel Pits
Great White Egret at Holme
Little Stint, Curlew Sandpiper at Welney WWT
Caspian Gulls x 3, Curlew Sandpipers x 2 at Cley NWT

MEGA NEWS
AMERICAN REDSTART
Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

Rob Holmes is 40 Today!

Forgive me for stealing your image Rob! ©Rob Holmes
 
 

I have been sent the first two verses of a much longer poem by a well known and infamous local poet – most north coast birders will know who would pen such a poem! Apparently the other verses are not appropriate for publication!!!

Happy 40th Birthday Rob!

“So, The Young Mr Holmes has made FORTY ! !
Has he planned to do anything naughty:
Will he go and get sloshed,
Or, just end up well noshed –
And, then, have to do summat sporty !
 

He's now entered his 5th, long, decade;
Distinguished, if just slightly greyed !
His hard drive, with lots
Of his great camera shots,
Has such wonders – I hope they don’t fade !”

Thursday, 7 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Pomarine Skua flew past Overstrand
Hen Harrier, Whinchats x 2, Curlew Sandpiper, Spoonbills x 4, Caspian Gulls x 2 at Cley NWT
Red-backed Shrike, Turtle Doves x 3, Black Tern at Snettisham Coastal Park
Barred Warbler at South Valley, Winterton
Great White Egret, Spoonbill, Spotted Redshank, Short-eared Owls x 2 at Holme
Whinchats x 4 at Thorpe Marshes, Haddiscoe
Spoonbills x 39 at Stiffkey Fen

MEGA NEWS
AMERICAN REDSTART

Eoligarry, Barra, Western Isles

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Great White Egret, Osprey, Spoonbills x 2 at Holme Dunes NWT
Velvet Scoters x 17, Common Scoters x 400, Great Skuas x 5, Arctic Skuas x 3 at Holme
Great White Egrets x 3 at Titchwell RSPB
Spoonbills x 4, Curlew Sandpiper at Cley NWT
Pectoral Sandpiper at Potter Heigham Marshes
Osprey at Stiffkey
Black Tern at Colney Gravel Pits
Whinchats x 3 at Thorpe Marshes, Haddiscoe
Purple Sandpiper at Sheringham

MEGA NEWS
None

RBA Weekly Round-Up 30th August to 5th September!

By Mark Golley
https://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/v2/Content/WeeklyRoundup2017-36.aspx?s_id=1003468522

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Osprey at Rockland Broad
Spotted Redshank at Breydon Water
Turtle Dove, Spotted Redshanks x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
Barred Warbler, possible Wryneck at North Dunes, Winterton
Dotterel, Whinchat, Spoonbills x 2, Caspian Gull at Cley NWT
Spoonbill, Curlew Sandpiper at Burnham Norton
Montagu's Harrier, Great White Egret, Short-eared Owl, Pied Flycatcher at Holme
White-billed Diver yesterday at Sea Palling
Spoonbills x 2 at Snettisham RSPB
Hen Harrier at Stiffkey

MEGA NEWS
BAROLO SHEARWATER

Pentire, Cornwall

Co-ordinated Little Egret Roost Count for North Norfolk Coast!

http://www.birdforum.net/showpost.php?p=3611296&postcount=25718

Monday, 4 September 2017

Greenbuild – Celebrating Norfolk

THE REGIONS'S BIGGEST GREEN LIFESTYLE EVENT IN NORTH NORFOLK!

Felbrigg Hall

Saturday 9th & Sunday 10th September 2017


A Tern For The Better, As Blakeney Has Successful Breeding Season

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/environment/a-tern-for-the-better-as-blakeney-has-successful-breeding-season-1-5179799

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT"
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services  
Little Stint, Avocets x 1300 at Breydon Water
White-winged Black Tern, Osprey at Rockland Broad
Spoonbills x 33 at Stiffkey Fen
Osprey flew over Hunstanton
Great White Egret, Spoonbill, Short-eared Owls x 2, Whinchat, Spotted Redshank at Holme Dunes NWT
Spotted Redshank at Titchwell RSPB
Garganey, Curlew Sandpipers x 2, Spotted Redshank, Spoonbills x 4 at Cley NWT
Osprey flew over Thornham
Bittern at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB
Honey Buzzard at Wiveton
Pied Flycatcher at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse
Scaup at Sparham Gravel Pits
Great White Egret, Curlew Sandpiper at Holkham
Spoonbills x 2, Wood Sandiper, Whinchats x 2 at Burnham Overy Dunes
Spoonbills x 3 at Warham Greens
Wood Sandpipers x 2 at Wells
Wood Sandpipers x 2 at Welney WWT
Whinchats x 2 at Lynn Point, King's Lynn

MEGA NEWS
None