Monday, 21 September 2009

Quiet day out in Norfolk

The weather forecast for Sunday looked reasonable, in that we were supposed to get a belt of rain or showers coming up from the continent overnight, to East Anglia with clear conditions to the north and east. This led to a few pundits suggesting that the east coast could have a few migrants arriving.
As there was a fair bit at Spurn and Gib Point already, it looked to me that the best bet was north west Norfolk as this would allow us to head further north if needed, or stay on the Norfolk coast. High tide at Snettisham at 0700 and a Wryneck still present on Saturday night was all we needed for a first stop.
The tide was starting to drop by the time we arrived, but there were plenty of waders in the pit-virtually all Oystercatcher as well as a surprisingly large number of Egyptian Geese. On the rapidly appearing mud of the Wash, many thousands of birds were feeding. Mainly Sanderling, Dunlin, Redshank and Shelduck, but small numbers of Plover, Godwits and Curlew too. There were also a few Pintail on the sea. Sadly no sign of the Wryneck, and there were few other migrants in the bushes apart from the odd Chiffchaff.
Undaunted we set off for Holme, and scoured the Paddocks. By now the sun was out, it was clear, warm and very still. Two calling Redstart and a single Lesser Whitethroat was not much of a fall, and about the only other birds present were Dunnocks. The walkers on the coastal path kept calling out "what a lovely day"as they strode past. Had a look at the scrapes, but the Little Stint had gone and there was nothing close to photograph. The pines were very quiet too, and I called in at the observatory where Jed and Sophie were trying to find ways to pass the time-they had ringed one Garden Warbler by early afternoon.
By two o clock we had given up and went home. Luckily the Beers of the World Warehouse off the A10 was still open so I have a few nice beers to try.

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