I have not been travelling with Colin for a few weeks, and he has been itching to go out and do something. Although it has been pretty quiet on the east coast recently, with high pressure over the Uk killing migration there were some birds around so we headed up to Titchwell.
Th promising low mist soon gave way to bright warm sunshine. Not a great deal in Titchwell car park so we walked out to the marshes. I had hoped that the Osprey would still be around on Thornham Marsh, but a shooter had set up in its preferred spot and was not seen all day. At first there seemed to be very few waders present, the water levels being a bit high, so favouring hoards of duck. Among the large flock of Black tailed Godwits we saw a few Redshank, Dunlin, Ringed Plover and a lot of Ruff. A few Grey Plovers were present, but no Golden. Three Spoonbills were loafing at the back of the fresh marsh as usual, but were actually awake and moving-something we don't often see. Every now and again Bearded Tits were pinging and erupting from the reeds, and there were still at least one Yellow Wagtail among the Pieds.
There were more waders using the area behind the dunes as a high tide roost-more Grey and Ringed Plover, Oystercatcher, Turnstone and a couple of Spotted Redshanks.
Despite the onshore breeze, sea watching was not all that I had hoped for. Apart from the constant movements of Gannets, with many juveniles heading west close inshore, and Sandwich terns it was hard going. We saw a few Red Throated Divers, all distant, three presumed Arctic Skuas on the horizon, and a few Common Scoter.
On our return we saw the two reported Little Stints, but failed to locate two Curlew Sandpipers. Leica and Zeiss had set up a tent by the visitors centre, so we stopped off to have some of our gear serviced. While there I got to play with the new Zeiss SF 10x40 bins which were very impressive-the field of view seems to be only a bit smaller than my old 7x42, much lighter and incredibly sharp. Unfortunately one of the guys had a problem with cards in his Nikon D3x camera-we swapped gear to prove his cards were not compatible with the camera. He then dug out some of the new Zeiss lenses for me to play with. Not happy as its going to be very expensive getting all this nice new stuff.
After lunch and with very little news coming in from anywhere we thought it might be worth going to Cley. Cant remember when we were last there, but the offshore wind farm was new to us. Like Titchwell the scrapes were full of ducks and Godwits and not much else. About the only notable sighting were a small group of Pintail. Bit disappointed really, but it just seemed to be one of those days, and it was nice to get out.