Thursday, 25 October 2012

Day trip to North Norfolk

Red Flanked Bluetail.

With so many good birds around this last few days i thought a day trip yesterday to North Norfolk was in order , i set of  early this morning and headed towards towards Stiffkey and hopefully see the quite stunning Red Flanked Bluetail that has been there for the last couple of days and i was not disappointed , this stunning bird showed really well coming down to feed on some meal worms that had been put out for it .

This stump was less than 2 feet away .

Lovely buff flanks.

Really bright white throat patch.

Bright blue tail and rump.

White eye ring and pale based bill.

What a beauty this bird is , it favoured a small log pile and was very obliging , there were lots and i mean lots of Robins around and one in particular took a bit of a disliking to the Bluetail , almost every time it came in to feed the Robin would harass and try to chase it off , i enjoyed this bird for over an hour and left very happy indeed , other birds of note here were 2 Black Redstarts , lots of Goldcrest , and hundreds of Thrushes everywhere , the majority of these were Redwing which seemed to be in every hedge row and tree , Blackbirds and Fieldfare were well represented .

I heard news via the pager of an Arctic Warbler in willow trees at Brancaster Staithe so thats where i headed , on route i drove through Burnham Deepdale and  noticed a female Ring Ouzel amongst 30 Blackbirds on a small green , so i stopped and had a look , smart .

On arrival at Brancaster i was not sure of where to go and luckily i met 2 birders who were on route so ie followed them along the coastal path and joined the finder of this smart warbler Graham Etherington , so there were just a handful of us trying to re locate it   and i was the last to get onto it , i seem to have trouble picking birds out high up in canopys !!!!

Graham has some photos on his blog : http://birds-britishbirder.blogspot.co.uk/ , this was  a great year tick for me , the Arctic Warbler showed a really strong supercillum and smallish single wing bar , it stayed mainly high up in the canopy but at times it did show lower down , other birds of note here were Common Redstart , Chiffchaff and several Goldcrest .








Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Lapland comes to Reculver

Very wet looking Lapland Bunting.

I returned to Reculver this morning in the hope of connecting with the Lapland Bunting which i missed yesterday , it was still very foggy as i walked along the sea wall to Cold Harbour Lagoon , i met 3 birders half way along who had just seen it , so i carried on with fingers crossed , i briefly saw the Shorelark as it flew up from the shingle beach and further down the coast and out of sight , there were Robins , Chaffinch and Meadow Pipits everywhere and despite constant scanning i could not find anything else with them , i did see a Chiffchaff in amongst a small bush the land side of the sea wall as i continued my journey , as i reached the area the Lapland Bunting was last seen there was not a bird to be seen , i walked down the slope and flushed several Meadow Pipits and a single Reed Bunting .

Reed Bunting .

I walked a bit further down the slope and almost stood on the Lapland Bunting , it flew into the grass then flew over my head onto the shingle beach , i managed a few photos.





 This is the first Lapland Bunting i have seen in the Reculver area and it was a very confiding bird , it flew on the path a couple of times but sadly was flushed each time by either bike riders or joggers , i really enjoyed this bird and headed off back towards my car adding 3 Wheatears and the Shorelark once again in flight .







Monday, 22 October 2012

Reculver in the Mist

Just a short post and sorry for lack of photos , i spent an enjoyable couple of hours at Reculver late this afternoon , i parked up in the car park near the Towers and almost straight away saw a Black Redstart in the company of a couple of Chaffinchs and Robins , then i made my way to behind the Sluice building and instantly heard the Dusky Warbler tacking away , its quite a distinct Tac Tac call , as ever it was keeping hidden in the dense scrub but eventually it appeared briefly at the top of the scrub and was a welcome year tick , i spent a few more minutes here but it had stopped calling and the light was not great so i decided to head off and look for 2 more potential year ticks.

On my way to the sea wall i saw a small flock of Brambling mixed in with several Chaffinch , plus a further 3 Brambling were on the sea wall , i met up with Chris Hindle and family and we walked along the sea wall towards Cold Harbour lagoon , on route Matt Hindle located the stunning looking Shorelark , i have seen many Shorelarks over the years but this is by far the best plumaged one i have seen , i was hoping to see the Lapland Bunting but however the time was getting late and poor light meant it had probably already gone to roost , so maybe tomorrow .......

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Red Breasted Goose at South Swale

Red Breasted Goose with Brent Geese.

With news of an adult Red Breasted Goose showing well with Dark Bellied Brent Geese at South Swale all week i thought i would have a look on Saturday 20th , this being my first chance as being busy at work all week ,  i parked up near the Sportsman pub at Seasalter and made the long walk along the sea wall towards South Swale , there were plenty of Bearded Tits in the adjacent reed bed plus 2 or 3 Cettis Warblers were quite vocal but as ever not seen .

Head on view.

I reached the area the Red Breasted Goose had been favouring and i soon picked it out amongst the Brents , this is an adult bird and did show well most of the time i was there , i think this has a great chance of being accepted a s genuine wild bird , it arrived with over 2000 Dark Bellied Brent Geese and is  unringed , this is  a welcome year tick for me.

Unringed .

All images were digi scoped.

There were plenty of Wigeon and Shelduck on the Swale , plus a distant Marsh Harrier , after about half an hour all the Geese took to the air and had a fly around obviously spooked by something , i wasn't watching the Red Breasted Goose at the time and i could not pick it out in flight , however they all eventually settled down again further down the Swale  where i managed to see it again and put two newly arrived birders onto it , on my way back i had some great views of the Bearded Tits plus a pair of Stonechats showed well at times.




Monday, 15 October 2012

Little bit of Digi Scoping at Oare

Mixed bag of waders at Oare.

I have recently brought myself some Digi scoping equipment and this was my first attempt at using it , quite clearly i have alot of practise to do to get the hang of it .

Ruff, Dunlin and Ringed Plover.

There were a good number of waders at Oare plus there were a few Swallows and House Martins about , i must admit i really was concentrating on photography more than the birds today hence i probably missed most of the decent birds that were around today .

Golden Plover , Black Tailed Godwit and Dunlin .

I also popped over to Stodmarsh for a quick visit but sadly missed the Black Necked Grebe and the Kingfisher that had been showing well from the Reed Bed Hide never appeared whilst i was there , however i did have a couple of Lesser Redpoll fly over and Bearded Tit were " pinging " everywhere plus the usual Cettis were very vocal around the hide