Monday, 11 October 2010

Nice end to the day

The constant easterlies over the last few days brought in a lot of good birds all along the east coast, and megas seemed to be  coming up on the pagers all the time. Decided to do Norfolk on Sunday, as there would be plenty for us to go for.
Clear skies overnight said otherwise.
The Radde's Warbler had gone from Warham greens by the time we got to the coast and with the tide preventing access to the Stiffky Olive Backed Pipit (I did not twig what that meant..) so we stopped off at the beach road Cley. A scan from the bank produced the expected wildfowl, egrets and a hunting juvenile Marsh Harrier. No sign of the very elusive Hooded Crow.
Wit Shorelarks from the East Bank we headed there. Lots of people-no larks. Ran into an old friend who said they were very mobile. Sat down to do a bit of sea watching-couple of Gannets, Red Throated Divers and a late Sandwich Tern. Two Wheatear were nice to see. Best bird on Arnold's Marsh was the pretty close juvenile Spoonbill, and it's Little Egret companion.

With no news, very light winds and clear blue skies, we decided to call in at Walsey Hills. Seemed to be full of Goldcrests-obviously new arrivals, and a few Chiffchaffs. Couple of Siskin and Redwings went over, and a series of buzzy zews alerted us to fifteen Brambling dropping in. Tried to get photos but not successful.
Left at noon, and was heading to Holme when news of the Olive Backed Pipit came in, so managed to park at Stiffky. Assumed it would be along the coastal path in the trees-did not realise it was half mile out on the salt marsh. Tide was low, plenty of slippery creeks to jump, lot of mud to fall in, which I did, landing on my now very muddy camera. No harm luckily.
Managed to get very good views as the pipit crawled through the long grass and the gorse-have not seen one for years. Unfortunately the long grass hampered photography for me and I never got anything worthwhile. Colin did and left. I stayed for a bit, picking up a couple of Redstart, more Goldcrests and Brambling, and then got paged about a possible Isabelline Wheatear in Lowestoft. Returned eventually to the car, and it was now definite.
Took us 90 minutes, and the small crowd included Barry and Bill from Amwell, as well as Joan Thompson and Lee Evans. Royston Dave, and William arrived soon after us.
Spent over an hour watching the lifer feed among the old net poles on the North Denes, getting very good views. Another bird that has eluded me for years is now safely ticked.

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