Posts Tagged ‘Bird watching tours

24
Sep
16

Spot the Flycatcher

This little fellow entertained us the other evening with his fly catching antics. Spotted Flycatchers aren’t apparent in the numbers they once were. Should we be worried? … I think so.

spotted-flycatcher_z5a6847

31
Oct
15

Never the gorse shall meet

The well watched Siberian Stonechat at Caister on Sea was performing well last weekend … at a distance. It never came close when I was there; preferring to spend more time with the passing golfers on the far side of some gorse than with the entourage of photographers and birdwatchers stood in the dunes. Nice bird though!

2015 10 25 Siberian Stonechat Caister on Sea Norfolk_Z5A3432

11
Apr
15

Third time lucky

Sat in the hide we waited patiently for Water Rails to appear. There had apparently been three but we saw only two. On the first occasion one came so close he was within my minimum focus distance.

The second time he showed, the card in my camera needed changing – schoolboy error.

The third time he came right out of the reeds and showed in bright sunshine.

Water Rail

26
Feb
15

A bit of Spring Movement

The wind was in the east for a day or so last week and here on the hill the fields filled with Reed Bunting. One or two even spilled into the garden for a while. Is spring at last on its way?

Reed Bunting

 

14
Feb
15

Barnie’s Back

With one thing and another I seem to have been constantly on the phone of late. Bookings for hotels, bookings for tours etc … etc

It’s strange isn’t it, when I’m on the mobile I tend to stand up and I have a habit of walking around for no apparent reason. Maybe it helps me think. Anyways, I was ambling from foot to foot in the dining room here at Falcon Cottage the other day deep in a conversation when something moved at the top of the garden. It was dusk so light wasn’t good. I tried to ignore it for the sake of fluency but I couldn’t. The call ended and I was able to grab my camera to get a shot of this little beauty sat on the back fence. A bit grainy given the low winter evening light but still nice to see.

Six species of owl have graced the garden since Sharon and I have been here. We only need Snowy to complete the list … The sixth? Oh! That’s Teet Owl … plenty of those in the kitchen. ;0)

Barn  Owl

23
Nov
14

Snow on the ridge

As we walked north to the sea and across the shingle a large flock of Linnet raised from the marshy pools. I couldn’t see anything among them until they got up a second time. The unmistakable white wings disclosed a Snow Bunting. Out away across the fields it flew. Later we stumbled upon a flock of 13 sat peacefully pecking the sparse vegetation and shuffling their way first up and then down the shingle slope. Standing out like a beacon was this white male in his winter garb.

2014 11 18 Snow Bunting Salthouse Norfolk_Z5A2107

01
Nov
14

A tad rough

A small influx of Rough legged Buzzards into the county in the last few weeks have meant birds gravitated to a few usual hotspots; places where they’ve been found in the past. Many of the birds we’ve seen loitering around on the ground; even running after rodents on a couple of occasions. When they get into the air however … they really are in their element.

Rough legged Buzzard_Z5A9915

 

31
Aug
14

Just Chatting

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The short sharp chacking call of a Stonechat is never too difficult to hear in Norfolk. The heaths and coastal dunes hold pairs which although moderately dispersal never roam too far. On a tour the other week we watched this bird hawking insects from atop a bramble and being very successful too.

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Stonechat

27
Aug
14

An ‘Icky’ & Greenish

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It was nice to see good friend Andy during my early morning walk. Neither of us had been able to get out during the late arrival of migrants the previous day and we were hoping for a consolation.

I’d already had a Hobby stirring up the hirundines and a Whimbrel heading high to the south. The target however was small passerines. A few Whitethroats and a Lesser Whitethroat had set the scene and Andy and I watched a couple of Blackcaps rumble through an elderberry as we stood chatting. We were just about to move on when the elongated form of a pale warbler perched up in front of us; an Icterine Warbler! It showed a little and then it too moved on. The hill here in Northrepps is good at turning things up … but they don’t stick. It’s nearly always a case of find it or miss it.

Revelling in our good fortune we both eventually returned to our timetable.

I checked a few other likely places and turned up Chiffchaffs and the like but as the day cleared it was obvious things had in the main resumed their migration.

Back at Falcon Cottage a tame Southern Hawker demanded a macro lens to show her off in all her glory. As I lay recumbent on the lawn I heard a scalding squeak behind me, A Greenish Warbler landed among the wild flowers called again and headed off west; the second good bird of the day but far too brief. Despite looking in all the likely places down in the village I couldn’t relocate it.

A flock … well, three … Pied Flycatchers and a dark Chiffchaff, I couldn’t metamorphose into anything else, were consolatory.

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2014 08 27 Icterine Warbler Sidestrand Norfolk_Z5A1385

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2014 08 27 Icterine Warbler Sidestrand Norfolk_Z5A1420

 

26
Aug
14

Tideline discovery

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There’s been at least one maybe two Red Breasted Mergansers here in north Norfolk since mid summer. Relatively common here in winter; summer visitors are scarce. It was a shame to find what was presumably the female dead on the tideline last week. She appeared to be in good condition so I’m not sure why she died; maybe just old age.

If you look closely you can see why mergansers belong to the ‘Sawbill’ group of ducks. The ‘teeth’ along the cutting edge of the bill mean business when it comes to hanging onto to slippery fish.

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Red breasted Merganser

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Red breasted Merganser2

 




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