Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Great Knot at Breydon Water and Collared Pratincole at Minsmere

With a half day available I headed up the A12 with the Jims intent on connecting with the reported Collared Pratincole and as we pulled into the car park at Minsmere the bird was still sitting on the scrape from East hide so we headed off out to the sea wall and marched along to the hide. The target had just dropped out of view at the back of the scrape but after a short wait it appeared and took a few short flights returning to the same spot several times. Double figures of Little Gulls were showing well and a smart Med Gull dropped in too. The summer plumage waders were also notable with Spotted Redshank, Turnstone and Blackwits all present.

Collared Pratincole....yes it's there...look harder!
Another Collared Pratincole was reported at Cley as we headed further north. We stopped at Breydon Water pulling into the Rugby club car park and walked the length of the pitch towards the south wall where a few other birders had gathered. We scanned the distant flocks noting Whimbrel, Curlew and then a small group of nine Knots. After careful scoping we managed to pick out the features on the Great Knot. Views remained distant and the light was harsh too but on occasions the bird would turn into the light and reveal itself. This I believe is Britains fourth Great Knot and Norfolks first so a nice connection adding both to my year list and life list too.

Great Knot.....distant but trust me it's there

News then broke that the Cley bird had been identified as a Black-winged Pratincole so we headed off in pursuit only for the pager to inform us the bird had flown high and south as we got about ten miles into the drive which meant an earlier start to our 120 mile journey home.

Sand Martin at Minsmere

Year list now 231.

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