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Sunday 21 September 2014

Last Day of My Bootcamp Birding Extravaganza!

Gramborough Hill, Salthouse

I arrived at Wells beach carpark by 9.30am. It was a beautiful morning and there were several birders here already. As I walked towards the 'Dell' area, I could see a line of people overlooking a gully. I was very impressed by everyone's behaviour – no-one spoke, no-one hardly even whispered. Fabulous views of the Olive-backed Pipit creeping through the grasses – they are just fascinating birds to watch and seem to remain hidden for ages without you knowing they are there. There were two Redstarts flitting about in the back of the trees aswell. Bumped into teenager Ben Moyes and his father here. A bit later the noise levels rose as more people turned up and one particular person talking loudly with 'where is it?' and also walking right across in front of people when they couldn't see/photograph the bird, which had moved to a little path on the bank we were all standing on. The OBP then landed on a big tree branch and had a preen, but then got flushed by the same man who had moved too close. I heard later on that this same man stayed several more hours and continued to shout every time he could see it – surprised no one mentioned 'fielcraft' and 'being quiet' to him! Time to go!
The Dell, Wells Woods.

Garden Drove, Warham with Eddie M., Ben Moyes and his Dad to search for migrants: hardly a bird seen. Was going out to East Hills, but Eddie sensibly persuaded me not to, as bit too late to go out and with the strong north wind, the tide would come in quicker. Ben is so enthusiastic about his birds and is an RSPB Volunteer – he has excellent hearing (as mine was at that age!) and seems a very level-headed and sensible young man. I was talking to him about Fair Isle and this was somewhere he was hoping to go to with help from the John Harrison Memorial Fund. Ben's blog is here. Photographed a Comma Butterfly – picture below.

Walsey Hills NOA – spent ages in here skulking about and eventually had a brief glimpse of the Yellow-browed Warbler.
Comma Butterfly
Garden Drove, Warham Greens

Birders watching the Barred and Yellow-browed Warbler at Gramborough Hill.

Parked the car up along a track at Salthouse (where the YBW was) and had peace and lunch! Fabulous views of a hobby flying low west, but wasn't quick enough with camera. I could see loads of birders at Gramborough Hill.

Saw and photographed the showy Barred Warbler at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse, but the Yellow-browed Warbler remained hidden away in the strong northerly wind. Bumped into Eddie, Dawn B. and family, Rob & Jill Wilson and others.
Gramborough Hill, Salthouse

Greylag Geese
Disturbed by a light aircraft at Salthouse

Went back to Wells to see the Olive-backed Pipit again with Eddie. We bumped into John F. and Josh (who I have not seen for ages!), we chatted briefly and then headed for the 'Dell'. There were three other birders looking for the OBP. Eddie and another man saw the bird very briefly. We all spent ages trying to re-locate it. I flushed it from the area where Eddie had seen it briefly – it made me jump as I hadn't expected it to appear so close to where we were standing. It landed on a branch and posed just long enough for a young man to tick off his first OBP, he did look pleased! This was at 6.10pm – it then disappeared into the undergrowth and we all left.
My second visit today and my last view – The Dell, Wells Woods


  1. Hi Penny. Great birding with you and Eddie, I hope we meet again. Sorry to hear a out your injury. Hope you get better soon. Ben.

  2. Hi Ben! Thanks, not that we saw much along Garden Drove, you heard more than us! I'm sure our paths will cross again, especially if a good bird turns up! Happy birding.