Saturday, 9 February 2013

Norfolk Birding

I caught up with the Great Grey Shrike this week up in Hertford to get my 156th tick of the year and decided to head up to North Norfolk this morning chasing a couple of year ticks.
On the drive up the A10 I spotted a group of Swans north of Welney and after pulling over to scan the flock we ID'd them as Whoopers (157) Further up the way I spotted a Barn Owl sat on a roadside post which I never get tired of seeing. We parked up at Wolferton around 8.30am and were quickly looking at two male Golden Pheasant (158) After watching the birds feed for a while we moved on to Holme. We walked the beach looking for Shore Lark but drew a blank despite many Skylarks feeding and singing. We did find five Twite (159) feeding by a pool and a Short Eared Owl came into view although I couldn't get Jimmy on it to his despair. A large Peregrine flashed along the shore while we waited for the Twite to return.
Mute Swan
After this we took a Coffee break at Titchwell before walking to the beach. Along the way we connected with at least 10 Brambling, a Water Rail, a  Bittern, a Spotted Redshank amongst other birds.
At the beach we found Long Tailed Duck, Common Scoter, Eider, a distant unidentified Grebe and a single Black Throated Diver (160).
Greylag Goose
A short drive from Titchwell and we're at Burnham Overy. We parked in the lay by and scanned the distant dunes etc before I locked on to a Rough Legged Buzzard (161) soaring high in the clouds to the west. We watched the bird for around fifteen minutes before it dropped from view. 3 Red Kites and a common Buzzard flew over along with a couple of Marsh Harriers. A small crowd of birders were pleased with my find although not all managed to connect with it despite directions.

Finally we took another coffee break at Salthouse car park and enjoyed the 12 Snow Buntings feeding on the mound to the east end of the car park. I also had a brief view of Male Hen Harrier from here.
Heading home and time for another Barn Owl, a Kestrel and a Merlin...a real raptor day in Norfolk.

Pied Wagtail
Snow Buntings

Black Headed Gull
Apologies for the photos of these common birds ......trying out the new camera and I have to say I'm quite pleased with the first outing with it.

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