Archive for the 'wild birds' Category

19
Mar
17

Rallying Rail

Everyone knows that Water Rails show well at dusk. This individual had not read the books. Walking alongside the path at Titchwell it was attracting a steady steam of admirers.

15
Mar
17

Never Close

The problem with raptors is they hardly ever do come close. The Pallid Harrier at New Holkham was no exception. It did show well but never gave us a fantastic photographic fly by.

 

12
Mar
17

A juxtaposition of events

We went to watch ‘Kong – Skull Island’ the other night at the cinema. Give it a miss; thin non-captivating plot, mediocre acting and CGI worthy of no more than a computer game. It was a late showing so we drove back home quite late at night. I like driving in the dark. We went by the scenic route. Country lanes, field edges, roadside copses and overhanging trees. It was mild too. I expected badgers, deer, rabbits, hares and the odd owl. What did we get? … a single, lonely moth. Just the one!

And yet … earlier in the week we had been for a walk along the dunes to see the Grey Seals hauled out on the beach. We didn’t count them all but it was plain to see there were a lot. We estimated there to be 3000 over a mile or so of beach. It wouldn’t have been far from the true number. This is more than I’ve ever seen before… anywhere. The tide was high and it was a weekday with few people and dogs around. Seals will have been pushed here from the sandbanks off Yarmouth and there was little disturbance to push them back into the sea here so numbers would be at a peak. 3000 equates to 1% of the world population. Even this weekend when things were much busier with people I did a more accurate count on a lower tide and there was 1426. Less than half the number than a few days earlier but that’s still a lot of seal flesh perched on the sand. Nothing less than a wildlife spectacular. A scene from an Attenborough episode.

What a juxtaposition of events.

When we have such spectacles and numbers it’s easy to think everything is ok. To think things are on track; that nature is in balance and our wildlife is safe.

 

08
Mar
17

Breeders?

The first recorded occurrence of Great White Egret in Norfolk was in 1979. Since then they have been regular visitors. On a tour this week we came across three together and another was reported less than a mile away. Do you think breeding is on the cards this year? I’ll be surprised if it’s not.

05
Mar
17

beating the blues

Coming back from a bird filled holiday is never easy; even if you do have a to-die-for job. I wasn’t helped by the relentless cascade of news, comments and photos relating to a Bluethroat just inside the Lincolnshire border. The fact it was a male and quite fearless gave me itchy feet. So on Wednesday I jumped in the car to scratch the itch and went to see the little chap. I wasn’t disappointed.

bluethroat-red-spotted-_z5a9698 bluethroat-red-spotted_z5a9948

 

28
Feb
17

February

Some excellent bird tours in February. Around 6 trips into the Brecks and almost as many into the Broads. The tour on the day of storm Doris was a challenge to say the least, but we still managed a few things of interest. Here’s a compendium of photos of just a few birds we came across during the month.

bewicks-swan crane glaucous-gull goshawk great-grey-shrike hawfinch iceland-gull lesser-spotted-woodpecker mediterranean-gullrough-legged-buzzardsiskinsnow-buntingwaxwingwoodlark

 

24
Feb
17

Wanderer

 

Some of you will know in the past ‘Letter from Norfolk’, and ensuing Facebook postings, occurred every other day. You may have noticed that as promised in my last post of 2016 there has been a change. Due to time restraints postings are now published every four days. There’s also a new ‘rotating’ header on the site.

Letter from Norfolk started off as a blog for my customers about what we had been seeing on tours and musings of a wider nature. However, it is clear postings are read and commented on by a much wider circle of individuals than those that have been on one of our tours. It will continue to adapt and change in the future perhaps inviting more comment (and photos) from others.

Recently I’ve been popping a lot on the site regarding my South American trip. I thought I’d post one last photo from our January break. It’s an Albatross. Specifically a Wandering Albatross. These are big birds and on one afternoon off the coast of Chile several came very close to the ship. Passing at ‘eye level’ they had me squealing like a schoolboy. They were almost within touching distance. I can’t convey the uplifting feeling at being so close to such an iconic enigma of the oceans. The bird with the longest wingspan in the world was inches from me. It could also easily have approached me in years of age; and I’m no spring chicken. Moreover it was graceful and beautiful. Wearing the perpetual smiles of a dolphin they would swoop and glide effortlessly in the strongest of winds. Simply magic.

I’ve placed some of the photos I took during January to the end of the ‘latest section’ of my Wildcatch Photography site – see them here. I’ve also prepared a trip report with details and sightings. If you would like a copy please send me an email (carl@wildlifetoursandeducation.co.uk)

wandering-albatross




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