Posts Tagged ‘Norfolk Fall of Birds


A Content Day

As we drove back in very misty conditions from the Foundry Arms on Saturday night we were full of good food. I said to my mother in law “Conditions look good for a fall tomorrow” Having explained what that meant I think I managed to convey a picture of some good bird watching on the coast. I didn’t realise how good with some excellent classic fall species in terrific numbers.

A family day had been planned on the broads in a boat on the Sunday. I got up early and walked the hill. Whinchats and Wheatear were a plenty; even a Whimbrel had made landfall. In the reeds there was a mystery warbler. It just wouldn’t show in the time I had available. The few calls it did make were not enough to give it identity.

The trip on the boat was good. I even managed to see a Bittern and a handful of Marsh Harriers. Late afternoon Tony’s phone call gave me the news that he’s managed to put a name to the mystery warbler (if it was the same bird). He’d seen an Icterine. I was elated for him but it had done the dirty and disappeared.

When I got back home there was a Reed Warbler in the garden. I walked the fields. More birds still. Wheatears, Whinchat had all increased in number. Sedge, Reed and several Willow Warblers flitted around. A Peregrine parted the air and flushed a grunting Snipe but no sight or sound of an Icterine.

I had to be content with the Willow Warblers that played around me … like dancing children.

Willow Warbler


A fall of birds

As I looked out of the window on Monday I couldn’t see the hedgerow at the far end of the garden; thick, dense fog. I didn’t rush to get outside. How wrong I was. On stepping out of the door I was greeted with a clatter of wings as a large flock of Fieldfare took flight into the grey of the mist. Chaffinch were everywhere and the air was filled with the high pitched peeping of Goldcrest and the equally high pitched whistles of Redwings. There had been a fall of birds.

A high pressure and clear skies on Sunday night over Scandinavia had prompted birds to move south. When they hit the Norfolk Coast shrowded in fog they were grounded. A fall of birds.

I made my way coastward and was over-flown by wave after wave of thrushes. Down at the rockpile 3 to 4 Black Redstarts, Bramblings and more thrushes  flew in and swept up the cliff and a couple of Ring Ouzel made landfall. It was only a matter of time before one of us found something interesting. It was Tony and Rose that alerted us to an interesting Acrocephalus Warbler… but which one? After much observation and photographs the debate began.  I think we’re more or less all settled now on Reed Warbler with a slight bill abnormality… but I’ll stand corrected.

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Mar 2023


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