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Saturday, 18 October 2014

The Party's Over!

Bad night's sleep, got up late. Didn't miss the Isabeline Shrike, as it did the usual Friday Night Bunk and had disappeared, much to the disappointment of the all the birders who were at work this week!

A very disappointing day, most things cleared out! Windy, but incredibly warm – too hot to be wearing a coat really!

King's Lynn's Hardwick Cemetery
I decided to start off birding at the Hardwick Cemetery which is somewhere no one else goes birding as far as I know, to find myself a Siberian Thrush (I wish). It was spitting with rain at this point. Very dodgy birding in here alone and with binoculars (similar to Great Yarmouth Cemetery!). Kept camera hidden in bag. It's so beautiful in here and has so much potential, with very mature trees including sycamore, oak, holly, fir and a fabulous mix of vegetation and bushes. Managed to see a few Robins, 3 Blackbirds, 2 Jays, 2 Magpies and a Green Woodpecker. Left here and went to 'Norfolk Country Clothing' on Hardwick Industrial Estate and bought a pair of Sealskinz waterproof socks and some Toggi walking socks.

Garden Drove, Warham
My ankle was in agony – not from my ligament damage/sprain, but from what I think is Achilles tendinopathy, I could hardly walk along the track it was that bad. I find that wearing walking boots makes it worse, I need to wear trainers tomorrow. Very few birds seen here, but tit flock with around half a dozen goldcrests, 1 Redwing, a couple of Blackbirds, a few Robins and a Common Buzzard. Walked back to my car and John F. arrived, who also then went to search for birds. Took 2 paracetamol and 2 ibuprofen which didn't make any difference to my pain whatsoever!

Stiffkey Campsite
Walked up to the campsite wood and found a tit flock with chaffinches mixed in – flushed a Robin and Blackbird in the end copse (where the Red-flanked Bluetail was this week). Nothing else of note. I was then going to walk east to the whirligig, just in case the Isabelline Shrike had decided to appear again and to try and see a Rough-legged Buzzard, when Eddie rang me to say he had found a Pallas's Warbler (with others) at the back of Walsey Hills NOA/Snipe's marsh.

Walsey Hills NOA/Snipe's Marsh
Joined a few of the locals to wait and hope, but no sign. Saw both male and female Bullfinch, a female Blackcap, Blue Tit, Great Tit and a Redwing, but nothing more. No sign of any YBW's. News of a Penduline Tit at Titchwell RSPB bleeped up in the pager! Too late to get there now! Later found out that this was found by young birder Craig Reed and has a picture too on twitter! Congratulations to him!

Coastguards, Cley
Lovely views of the Grey Phalarope in the Eye Pool as the sun was setting. Pager bleeped up with 'Pallas's Warbler again at Snipe's Marsh' – Bother!!! No sign of the Snow Bunting on the beach, but did find a nice Wheatear. Drove home feeling very glum and fed-up.

I heard some awful things today about this week's twitches in Norfolk including someone losing their rag and getting hold of someone just because that 'someone' had asked them not to walk and stand in front of them – unacceptable, completely out of order and very sad. Also behaviour at the Stiffkey 'bluetail' was also unacceptable.

On a happier note, the winds from the tail end of Hurricane Gonzalo look awesome for Tuesday/Wednesday AND its north west, so at least some seawatching will be on the cards for next week! See discussion about this HERE.

Let the next Party begin!

One picture to be added!

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