This should have been titled BIRD FAIR - DAY ONE!!!!! But was scrapped to find 'rares'!!!!!
A gloriously sunny day and a tons of birds early morning.
Burnham Overy Staithe
Along with Eddie M. started off at Burnham Overy Staithe at 7.15am. The hedges either side of the track not far from the main road, were riddled with common and lesser whitethroats and supporting cast of meadow pipits, wrens, linnets, a robin, blackcap. 62 Golden Plover and a kestrel flew over west. At the bushes at the end of the seawall there was a Garden Warbler and lots more linnets and meadow pipits.
At Gun Hill a Wheatear appeared. On the shore on a sand bank were common terns, sandwich terns, dunlins, 27 ringed plovers, oystercatchers and sanderling - 2 gannets going west and east. We walked through the low bushes on the seaward side of Gun Hill (directly below) and I used my 'Audubon Bird Call' and flushed out what look like a Wryneck - it bounded away incredibly quickly over the top of Gun Hill. Eddie and I climbed the hill to see the same bird dive back to where it came from at great speed! We climbed back down and waited...... nothing - we walked down to the bush were it went in and out it came and flew off over the dunes to reveal itself to be a WRYNECK on the seaward side of Gun Hill at 9.40am!!!! It was incredibly elusive and did not show again, with much searching as I wanted to photograph it - but sadly not to be! Walked back and through Overy dunes. 10.30am - saw at least 3 more wheatears perched on the fence wires. I felt very excited after finding the wryneck and just presumed we were on a roll and would see lots more goodies today. Several more linnets and meadow pipits about and whitethroats. Searched the dunes thoroughly and looked in all gullys.
Migrant Hawker, Common Darters by the gate at the beginning of the pines. In the pond east of Joe Jordons Hide Eddie spotted a Small red-eyed damselfly sitting on a stem on the surface of the water. Along the track, a few chiffchaffs and 3 Bullfinches, but sadly little else. Walked down Lady Anne's Drive and sat and had a mango ice-cream - lovely! We then made our way through tons of holidaymakers to the bus stop on the main road and very luckily only had to wait 4 minutes for a Coastliner bus to turn up, to take us back to our cars at Burnham Overy! Next stop was going to be Blakeney Point, BUT news of the Buff breasted Sandpiper at Titchwell enticed us west!
Parrinder Hide - 4pm - 4 Curlew Sandpipers. Dave Holman kindly (in other section of hide) kindly alerted us to a Red Kite giving spectacular views, going west at 4.20pm. juv. Spoonbill at 4.45pm. I found/saw a Turtle Dove flying across us and heading south/west at 4.53pm. A ruff (looking very buff breasted sandpiperish!!!) flew in right in front of us and then later on flew south towards the fields at Choseley! Other birds seen: Yellow leg Gull, a Yellow Wagtail right in front of hide posing for pictures, several Greenshanks, several dunlin, black tailed godwits, avocets etc etc. A Hobby flew west at 6.09pm. Highlight was watching 5 Yellow Wagtails that came down to bathe before flying off! A Cettis Warbler burst into song along the main bank on the way back and a sparrowhawk was seen. Left at 6.45pm. No sign of the Buff breasted Sandpiper whatsoever!!!! Oh well, seen several before, but it would have been nice to photograph close up! Several local birders (and from afar) had also missed it and had sat there for hours waiting for it to reappear!
Another day tomorrow!
PHOTOGRAPHS TO BE ADDED