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Saturday, 31 December 2016

NEW YEAR'S EVE MIRACLE!!!

Neither Father or I had a good night's sleep. Father was restless and naturally I was attentive and concerned throughout the night. I was not allowed to open the window at all because of Father's low temperature last night and this made it difficult to sleep. I eventually got to sleep in the early hours this morning! Both Father and I were sound asleep when someone called out 'breakfast' at 8.15am! Father was not allowed to eat until the Consultant and Doctors did their rounds. The nursing staff came to give Father a wash etc and I went off to a 'secret' place in the hospital to have a shower myself – I felt a whole lot better after that. Returned to be with Father who seemed so much better today generally. His BP first thing had finally climbed to a normal level of 140/70 – later it was 182/79 and then at 1pm was 101/67.

The consultant came round with a doctor, who said that I could try Father with a soft diet at lunch time. The saline fluid, anti-biotics and paracetamol would continue and also a steroid is being given – Father is still on oxygen with nasal specs. I also asked the Consultant if he could be blunt about Father's prognosis, as I have to think about so many things over the next few days and need to make plans re work etc – he replied that 'he certainly doesn't look like someone who is going to die right now',  but 'you can't always tell', which pleased me to hear! I don't think the staff can quite believe the turnaround! On Wednesday he was close to the end and because they could not get his BP raised to a normal level, I don't think anyone thought he was going to make it. The support of his family, I'm sure has helped. This sounds wicked to say, but I'm sure those of you that have gone through the same thing will understand when I say that I kind of wanted it to end, because he was so desperately poorly and I couldn't bare to see him like that, with no response, no movement, nothing, apart from a very ill and pale looking man –  my family felt the same. Against all the odds, my stubborn 90 year old Father seems to be on a upward spiral – us Clarke's are made of stern stuff!!!

Father was given his first dose of Resperidone at 12.15pm, thank goodness – he has not had this since Tuesday night at the care home and this is what settles his dementia – without it, he is restless, confused and shouting etc! At lunch time Father had about an 1/8th of his main course and half a portion of warm custard and of ice-cream – he especially enjoyed the desserts and gave me a little smile which was nice. He was not able to initiate to suck the coffee through the straw (which he normally does), so I gave him some on a teaspoon, but he did not swallow this, so I had to remove it. Even with the drink thickened, he was not able to swallow it properly.

With my mind a bit clearer today, I realised that I could log onto the guest WiFi here at the hospital, which mean't I could bring my laptop back from home and update the blog with all the bird news for the last few days!

My sister Vivien who had been staying with Mother, returned to Ely today, as had essential stuff to do. Mother was too exhausted to visit and Lucy was not able to cope with another day here, so I was solo today! After Father's lunch, I returned home to get some urgent washing in the machine – I had a doze on the sofa whilst I waited for the cycle to finish. Hung up the washing, did some old washing up and packed up my laptop to bring back to the hospital. Went to the Tesco's garage shop to stock up with treats (diet scrapped this week) and returned to the hospital.

I discovered that Father had pulled out his cannula and was trying to pull all the bed linen off and his gown and was incredibly restless. I know him so well, and all of this is due to the fact that the Resperidone is out of his system and it will take a good few days to get back into his system! When I tried to hold his hands still, he was pulling my arms and would not settle – he has incredible strength in his hands and arms. He settled a little when I helped him with his tea – he ate 3/4 of a cheese omelette with baked beans, which I had to mash and two small ice-creams portions. He still couldn't tolerate/swallow liquid. The staff are going to change his 'soft diet' to 'Puree 2', which is basically liquidised food. He looked very alert and wide-eyed, but had that particular stare that indicates his dementia is far from under control! I know this look so well! Father's BP at 9.30pm was 127/77, heart rate/pulse 63, 97 Sats and had his second dose of Resperidone.

I went off to see the Pied Wagtail roost again in the courtyard garden – the same wonderful scene as last night, with little groups of wagtails huddled together in the bushes, peeking out to look at me with my nose against the window watching them! Lovely! Went to get a decent coffee from a machine and returned to the ward. I spent the evening typing up all the last few day's bird news in full, which took a long time, but I wanted to get it up to date. As I type this it is 11.30pm, it looks like Father will see in the new year after all. Its a long time since I saw the new year in with my Father, even though he is asleep right now and won't be aware of this.

I suppose that I could have returned to my home tonight, but I didn't want to leave Father on New Year's Eve, but sensibly I will probably return home tomorrow night. Most year's I do a New Year's Day Bird Race, along with many of you, but obviously won't be doing that tomorrow. Maybe, I will get some birding done for a short while on Monday. I will be returning to work on Tuesday, unless Father takes a turn for the worst. I really hope that he continues to get better – he has struggled to get this far and it would be sad if it all went wrong now. He will still be in hospital for while though, as he needs to be drinking and eating normally and able to sit out in a chair, before returning to the care home at Heacham.

Again, thank you all very much for your support and kind messages over the last few days, I still can't believe Father is still here, I really thought that was it! It is now 11.45pm!

NEW YEAR'S EVE! NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 22 by Beach Road at Cley NWT.
Snow Buntings x 12 on south side of outer harbour at Great Yarmouth.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 157, Tundra Bean Geese x 10 near Creake Abbey at North Creake.
Long-tailed Ducks x 43, Velvet Scoters x 21, Water Pipit, Jack Snipe, Lapland Bunting, Spoonbill at Titchwell RSPB.
Waxwings x 2 in Co-op car park at Cromer.
Waxwings x 3 still in Jerningham Road at New Costessey.
Waxwings x 2 in garden at Holt Road/Sandy Lane junction at Cromer.
Scaup x 2 at Tottenhill Gravel Pits.
Tundra Bean Geese x 3, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 3 with Pink-footed Geese off Pound Lane, Docking.
Scaup x 4, Great Northern Diver at Hickling Broad NWT.
Taiga Bean Geese x 6, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 100 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
Snow Bunting at Caister-on-Sea.
Waxwings x 5, Common Cranes x 2 at Denver Sluice.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 40 in fields east of River Wensum at Little Ryburgh.
Waxwings x 6 briefly in Dell at Holme.
Water Pipits x 2 at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB.
Cattle Egrets x 4 at Halvergate.
Spoonbill, Caspian Gull at Arnold's Marsh, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 26 in field just before car park at Cley NWT.
Great White Egret, Hawfinches x 4 at Lynford Aboretum.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x  6, Pink-footed Geese x 500 in field SW of Kelling Hall.
Hen Harriers x 5 at Warham Greens.
Scaup at Whitlingham Country Park.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! BLUE ROCK THRUSH Male (present c.1 week) in garden at in Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in field by Pig Lane, Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
MEGA! CAPE GANNET possible, flew past Barns Ness, Lothian, Scotland.

MEGA! NORTHERN HARRIER Adult male at North Ronaldsay, Orkney. 

Friday, 30 December 2016

Father Continues To Fight

Today has been rocky again. Father had a fairly settled night and I did too on my camp bed! Early morning he looked a good colour for the first time and spoke for the first time and said 'yes please' to my offer of some coffee at  breakfast time – but this did not work out as he was not able to swallow or with thickener in the coffee. He did manage to swallow 4 quarter teaspoons of raspberry yoghurt, but then sneezed it all out! A consultant instructed that he is now Nil by mouth. This was the only time he looked ok today after this his BP dropped very low and he looked awful. BP increased again later. His breathing was very heavy and erratic and also had moments of not breathing at all!

The Respiridone that Father is normally on for his dementia is now wearing off and he has become very restless and tugging at sheets etc! I was told it would commence again tomorrow. Temperature dropped to 35.9 at 7.30pm and Father was distressed and very cold I wrapped him up with more blankets and by 8.30pm it had risen to 36.6 the night staff who had just started her shift said I had done a good job. He looks very pale this evening. I didn't expect him to last this long the doctors looked surprised when they came onto the ward this morning!

Whilst my family were here today, I had to leave for a short while to swop my spare emergency wheel over for new tyre/wheel from my puncture on Christmas Eve. The fog is really bad in Norfolk today. I went off for a short break this evening to see the Pied Wagtail roost I was so pleased to see them all, still in the courtyard harden, huddled up in their now heavily trimmed bushes this really lifted my spirits for a while nature can be so comforting at difficult times. When I returned to Father's side room I played some bird song from my iphone for him to listen to: Bee-eater, Hoopoe, Golden Oriole, Nightingale, Cuckoo and Tawny Owl - he seemed to enjoy this. I played Tawny Owl to remind him of the Owls that call at Mother's house most nights and the Cuckoo to remind him of old NOA member Ron Longstaff who used to 'Cuckoo' along the main bank in winter time! Taken me ages to type this all up, one fingered on my iphone!

So with New Year's Eve fast approaching I wonder if Father will make it to the new year. Thank you again for all your ongoing kind support and messages, it is much appreciated.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Waxwings x 3 still in Jerningham Road at New Costessey.
Long-tailed Ducks x 12, Velvet Scoters x 32, Little Stint at Titchwell RSPB.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE again, with Pink-footed Geese off Pound Lane, Docking.
Spoonbill west of Beach Road at Cley NWT.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 12 in field north of Beach Road at Snettisham Coastal Park.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 80 near Creake Abbey, North Creake.
Waxwings x 2 in garden at Holt Road/Sandy Lane junction at Cromer.
Tundra Bean Geese x 2, Eurasian White-fronted Goose, Barnacle Geese x 4 in sugar beet field near Holt.
Scaup x 5 at Hickling Broad NWT.
Shorelarks x 20 on saltmarsh east of Holkham Bay at Holkham Gap.
Snow Buntings x 45, Lapland Bunting at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! BLUE ROCK THRUSH Male (present c.1 week) in garden at in Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in field by Pig Lane, Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.

MEGA! KILLDEER remains in stubble field at Sandwick, Shetland.

Thursday, 29 December 2016

Touch & Go

So it's been a very tough day for all my family. I have been with my Father since his admission yesterday morning and had almost no sleep. My Father has continued to be poorly all day with BP remaining low. Consultants and Doctors have been giving him saline, potassium and antibiotics to try and combat his infection. From his blood results he may have had a heart attack we were told today. This afternoon his BP went higher momentarily and this made him perk up and attempted to smile, which brought me to tears! His urine output is only 200ml since yesterday – kidneys failing. Everything is against him at his grand age of 90 years old. His stubborn and determined character is fighting, but it is sadly a losing battle. He is aware I am here and looked pleased when I said I was staying with him tonight. The staff on this ward have been awesome and have done everything they can for him. An amazing Sister arranged an emergency camp bed for me tonight!!! The NHS is the best thing this country has and all its staff should be paid far more than they earn. Anyway, now going to settle in my camp bed – good night. Thank you all for your supportive messages via social media and emails.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert' 
Long-tailed Ducks x 12, Velvet Scoters x 42, Spotted Redshank, Scaup at Titchwell RSPB.
Short-eared Owls x 2 at Haddiscoe Island.
Tundra Bean Geese x 20, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 3, Pink-footed Geese x 1,400 in stubble field, NW of Rollesby.
Waxwings x 3 still in Jerningham Road at New Costessey.
Cattle Egrets x 4 NW of Marsh Road/Branch Road, east of Halvergate village.
Snow Buntings x 40 at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse.
Water Pipits x 25 at Potter Heigham Marshes.
Short-eared Owls x 3, Spotted Redshank at Breydon Water.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE again, Todd's Canada Goose, Tundra Bean Geese x 2 off Pound Lane, Docking. 
Spoonbill west of Beach Road, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 22 on Bull Marsh at Cley NWT.
Tundra Bean Geese x 3, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 10, Pink-footed Geese x 250 at Blakeney Freshes.
Great White Egret, Hawfinches x 14 at Lynford Aboretum.
Twite x 40 at Thornham Harbour.
Ring-billed Gull at 12.30pm, Wells Quay.
Shorelarks x 30 on saltmarsh east of Holkham Bay at Holkham Gap.
Snow Buntings x 3 flew past Horsey.
Common Cranes x 21, Hen Harrier at Stubb Mill Roost, Scaup x 3 at Observation Point at Hickling Broad NWT.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 3, Pink-footed Geese x 2000, Tundra Bean Geese x 3 in sugar beet field at Freethorpe near Reedham.
Hen Harriers x 5, Short-eared Owl at Warham Greens.
Great Northern Diver, Jack Snipe at Scolt Head Island NNR.
Snow Buntings x 3 at North Dunes, Great Yarmouth.
Tundra Bean Geese x 10, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 6, with Pink-footed Geese in sugar beet field near Holt.
Tundra Bean Goose with Pink-footed Geese near Weybourne.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! BLUE ROCK THRUSH Male (present c.1 week) in garden at in Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in field right of Pig Lane, Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Wednesday 28th December
Long-tailed Ducks x 58, Velvet Scoters x 27, Scaup, Great Northern Diver, Spotted Redshanks x 3, Water Pipits x 2 at Titchwell RSPB.
Taiga Bean Geese x 17, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 200 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE again, Pink-footed Geese 2,000, Tundra Bean Geese x 12, White-fronted Geese x 5, Barnacle Goose off Pound Lane, Docking.
Twite x 12 at Blakeney Freshmarsh.
Cattle Egrets x 4 NW of Marsh Road/Branch Road, east of Halvergate village.
Snow Buntings x 30 at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse.
Tundra Bean Geese x 4, Pink-footed Geese x 900 in stubble field, NW of Rollesby.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 65 at Wickhampton Marshes.
Scaup at Whitlingham Country Park.
Waxwings x 5 in car park at Welney WWT.
Long-tailed Ducks x 2 on sea at Holme Dunes.
Snow Goose reported, flew SE with Pink-footed Geese, Iceland Gull juv. flew east over shingle bank at Kelling.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 7, Pink-footed Geese x 3,000, Tundra Bean Goose in sugar beet field at Freethorpe near Reedham.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! BLUE ROCK THRUSH Male (present c.1 week) in garden at in Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in field right of Pig Lane, Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.

Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Father is very very poorly

My Father is in hospital and very very poorly due to being very dehydrated after having D&V - he has sepsis and body breaking down. All the family have been here all day and I'm currently with him for the night. I'm not leaving his side. It will be a miracle if he pulls through.

2016 is an utterly crap year.

Life is precious - it's not until it starts to slip away do you realise how precious it is. Praying for my Dear Father as I stay by his side.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Hawfinches x 20 at Lynford Aboretum.
Tundra Bean Geese x 2, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 400 at Heigham Holmes.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE again at 3.38pm only, Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 8, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 3 with Pink-footed Geese off Pound Lane, Docking.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 87 just north of North Creake.
Taiga Bean Geese x 15, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 170 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
Waxwings x 6 at Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Cattle Egrets x 4 NW of Marsh Road/Branch Road, east of Halvergate village.
Shorelarks x 24, Long-tailed Ducks x 5, Velvet Scoters x 45 & Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 170, Great White Egret (on freshmarsh) at Holkham Bay still east of Holkham Gap.
Snow Buntings x 30 at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse.
Purple Sandpiper on rocks at Hunstanton.
Jack Snipe at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB.
Tundra Bean Geese x 8, 1 mile north of Cantley.
Waxwings x 13 at Jenny Lind Park, Norwich.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 22, 1 mile north of bridge at Ringland.
Water Pipits x 15 at Potter Heigham Marshes.
Tundra Bean Geese x 2, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 10 between Freethorpe and Reedham.
Hen Harriers x 7 at Warham Greens.
Hen Harrier, Common Cranes x 2 at Stubb Mill Roost, Spoonbill at Hickling Broad NWT.
Water Pipit at Daukes' Hide, Cley NWT.
Pale-bellied Brent Goose with Pink-footed Geese in field at Anmer.
Snow Bunting, Short-eared Owls x 5 at Haddiscoe Island.
Long-tailed Ducks x 42, Velvet Scoters x 17, Water Pipit, Scaup, Great Northern Divers x 2 at Titchwell RSPB.
Scaup at Whitlingham Country Park.
Glaucous Gull flew west past Sheringham.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 12 at Welney WWT.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 5 at Kelling.

MEGA NEWS 
MEGA! BLUE ROCK THRUSH Male (present c.1 week) in garden at in Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT still at Balranald RSPB, North Uist, Western Isles.
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in field right of Pig Lane, Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.

Monday, 26 December 2016

BOXING DAY – NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Common Cranes x 18, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 400, Hen Harriers x 2, Otters x 3 at Heigham Holmes.
Tundra Bean Geese x 14 at Burton's Farm, Belton.
Waxwings x 6 at Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 14, White-fronted Geese x 3 with Pink-footed Geese off Pound Lane, Docking.
Tundra Bean Geese x 5 SW of Beighton.
Taiga Bean Geese x 10, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 130 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB. 
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 12 north of Beach Road at Snettisham.
Cattle Egrets x 3 NW of Marsh Road/Branch Road, east of Halvergate village.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 22, by River Wensum NE of Ringland.
Snow Buntings x 34 north of car park at Winterton.
Shorelarks x 23 at Holkham Bay still east of Holkham Gap.
Snow Buntings x 30 at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse.
Jack Snipe, Otter at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB.
Taiga Bean Goose at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in fields at Pig Lane, Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.

George Michael: Pop Superstar Dies At 53!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-38432990

Sunday, 25 December 2016

CHRISTMAS DAY AT HOLME!

Today went very smoothly compared to yesterday's dramas! Sunny day here in Norfolk for most of the day, with very warm south west winds – weirdly warm for Christmas day!

I had to cook most of the Christmas dinner at my house this morning, in case the gas cylinder didn't last at Mother's house and then transported it all to Holme, picking Lucy up on route. We sat down to eat our vegetarian meal at 2pm and I had some lovely compliments from Lucy and Mother about what a lovely dinner it was. I did a good job of keeping Mother out of the kitchen for the majority of the day and Lucy helped me wash up. I burnt my thumb on a saucepan quite badly and after running it under cold water, got my first aid kit from the car and rescued it with burn lotion and a bandage.

Several desserts later, we all collapsed in the living room in a lethargic state! We had a lovely phone call from Maurice and Audrey Eccleshall, (NOA members from years ago) to kindly wish us Merry Christmas. I spoke to both Maurice and Audrey – Maurice declared he had been in the kitchen all day – 'ditto' I replied. I phoned the care home to ask after Father, who had been up all night and was now asleep. The staff were keeping all residents affected by D&V in their bedrooms, to try and contain it. What an awful Christmas for the residents – it was very difficult not to think about Father today – being stuck in one room for several days is going to be hell for him, how awful.

Lucy was in a brilliant and amusing mood today, she keep me laughing all day. We didn't open our presents until 6pm! I even bought the spoilt cat a present – two M&S chicken & gravy meals! We all chatted to Vivien on the phone this evening and although her and Ray had enjoyed their meal out in Ely, Ray was pretty ill with the rotten cold virus that is doing the rounds. Lucy and I left Mother and the cat at 10pm and we car danced and sang on the way home! No more punctures, result! It was a beautiful night sky, filled with twinkly stars – a better day than I thought it was going to be.

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO EVERYONE
AND I HOPE YOU ALL HAD A LOVELY DAY

CHRISTMAS DAY – NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Common Cranes x 22, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 100, Taiga Bean Geese x 4, Hen Harriers x 2, Otter at Heigham Holmes.
Great White Egret flew over Colney Gravel Pits.
Hooded Crow (or hybrid) flew west over Wighton.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE, Tundra Bean Geese x 4 with Pink-footed Geese off Pound Lane, Docking.
Waxwings x 6 at Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Shorelarks x 23 at Holkham Bay still east of Holkham Gap.
Taiga Bean Geese x 17, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 126 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB. 
Black Redstart at chalets along North Beach Road, Heacham.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 35 near Creake Abbey, North Creake.
Great White Egret still, from Joe Jordan Hide at Holkham.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 11 north of Beach Road at Snettisham.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 2 at Burnham Over Staithe.

MEGA NEWS
None.

Saturday, 24 December 2016

CHRISTMAS EVE LUNCH AT TITCHWELL RSPB, GOOSE DIP, ANOTHER PUNCTURE & CHRISTMAS DAY PLANS SQUASHED!!!!

The Christmas festivities have not started well with the Clarke family. The care home where my Father lives, phoned me last night to warn us and then confirmed this morning, that our planned Christmas Day Meal with Father at the care home is now cancelled, due to D&V (diarrhoea and vomiting)!!! Plus, no visiting unless necessary and at your own risk. I was mortified to say the least. My Father has never had Christmas without his family and we didn't want to be without him – its the only reason we were joining him at the care home. I have also spent hours choosing my Mother a lovely outfit for the day, which is now a complete waste of time and energy. I know these things can't be helped, but 24 hours before Christmas Day, such bad luck!!! What really annoys me is, that it probably could have been helped. The general public generally presume that hospitals and residential homes are to blame for D&V, but its usually visitors that selfishly bring it in to hospital etc, which is probably what has probably happened at the care home. Someone has obviously not followed the DO NOT HAVE CONTACT WITH OTHER PEOPLE UNTIL 48 HOURS AFTER LAST EPISODE rule and selfishly bought it into the home and has now made lots of vulnerable people very ill and at serious risk to their health and ruined their Christmas with their families!!! There were 12 family members booked in for Christmas day, who are all going to be very upset indeed! I'm very, very sad that I will not be with my dear Father tomorrow. Unfortunately my Father was one of the residents who is ill with the virus – it will sweep through the home, as Norovirus (if that's what it is) is airborne. Because of this, I had to rush out to buy food last night for Christmas Day, as I will now be cooking for Mother, Lucy and I at Holme.

I picked up my sister Lucy this morning and we met up at Holme with Vivien and her partner Ray and all of us took Mother to Titchwell RSPB for lunch. We all had potato skins with cheese & onion with salad and rhubarb crumble & custard to follow – very nice it was too. Eddie also joined us for a while and very kindly gave me a Christmas present. I met several blog readers this morning, thank you for stopping to say hello and Merry Christmas to you all! The Red-breasted Goose had been seen on/off throughout the morning and I was looking forward to seeing this after lunch. The NOA Christmas Sponsored Birdwatch Team were at the visitor centre and NOA Warden Sophie said they had already seen 95 species and were hoping to hit the magic 100 for the day, which would be a record she said. Whilst standing chatting with them, I watched a male and female Siskin and a Redpoll high up in the alder tree next to the shop.

After lunch I managed to persuade everyone else to join me to see the Red-breasted Goose, so off we headed up the Choseley Road towards Docking. Directions for anyone else going: with the Spar Shop in Docking on your left hand side, take the next minor road left which is 'Pound Lane' and then follow this road until you find the thousands of Pink-footed Geese and birders! When you arrive at this point, I wish you better luck than me, as there was NO bleep bleep Red-breasted Geese when we arrived!!! I didn't see the Todd's Canada Goose either! Of course it was a spectacle to see the Pink-footed Geese, but there was only one bird I was hoping to see. It was freezing cold here and my Mother was only able to stand there for a few minutes before she returned to my car. Lucy sensibly didn't get out at all and Vivien and Ray didn't last much longer! I scanned intensely to find that red goose, but I had to face it – I had dipped!

We all returned to Holme to swop presents, eat clementines, watch TV etc – all the usual stuff. Mother then informed me that she hadn't got much gas left in the propane gas bottle and was worried there would not be enough to cook the Christmas dinner – I sighed heavily, as I hear this statement EVERY Christmas. Ray went outside to check the cylinder and walked back in with an alarmed look on his face and said that it was very close to empty!!! Mother then argued that it couldn't be that empty and in any case she hadn't planned on cooking Christmas dinner, which mean't she knew she had enough for a week! You can already tell what is going to happen tomorrow, when I'm half way through cooking the dinner! I did suggest having Christmas dinner at my house, but Mother refused to leave the spoilt cat 'all day'!!!

Ray and Vivien left to return to Ely (they are having Christmas meal out in Ely tomorrow) and Lucy and I left around 7.15pm to go back to King's Lynn. As I cruised along the A149 the car did not feel right – lumpy, lop-sided only means one thing. I pulled into the layby at Old Hunstanton shop and got out to inspect the car. I could have cried – I could push my thumb into the offside rear tyre. This is my third BLOODY puncture in the last couple of months – crazy! I know this is really pathetic, but I have never changed a tyre in my life. Luckily I have RAC Breakdown free with my new car, so rang them up for assistance. I returned slowly to my Mother's house, in case we had to wait for ages. The RAC were brilliant and came out in about 20 minutes from my call. The young man that came out had a massive job trying to get the wheel off – he said you could tell that it had never come off the car from being manufactured – he took longer getting the wheel off than it took for him to come out! Physically, I would never have been able to do what he did. He also removed the culprit from the tyre – an old silver nail which was about 1.5cm long – did I pick that up along Pound Lane at Docking I wonder? Could have been anywhere I suppose. So the spare wheel is now on the car, which is good, but this means I can't drive more than 50mph until I get my puncture mended on Wednesday (at least), which is going to be terribly difficult for Penelope Pitstop! Also looking forward to another £25.00 bill......not!

Lucy and I eventually got back to King's Lynn and I spent the rest of the evening preparing stuff for Christmas Dinner. I hope everyone else's Christmas weekend is going better than mine so far! I will keep my fingers crossed that Christmas Day is more successful and the gas cylinder holds out!


MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

CHRISTMAS EVE – NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
RED-BREASTED GOOSE, Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 4, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 5 with Pink-footed Geese off Pound Lane, Docking.
Common Cranes x 21, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 400, Otters x 2 at Heigham Holmes.
Tundra Bean Geese x 5, Pink-footed Geese x 3,000 in fields SE of Belton.
Great White Egret flew over Earlham Marsh.
Waxwings x 6 at Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Great Northern Diver, Long-tailed Ducks x 10, Velvet Scoters x 12, Spotted Redshanks x 2 at Titchwell RSPB.
Spoonbill flew in off sea at Salthouse.
Tundra Bean Geese x 10 at Waxham.
Common Cranes x 2 at Acle.
Snow Buntings x 30 at North Beach, Winterton.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Black Brant, Dark-bellied Brent Geese x 500 300yds east of east end of Walsey Hills NOA.
Scaup at Whitlingham Country Park.
Great White Egret at Admiralty Point.
Great White Egret at Bawburgh.
Cattle Egret flew over, Taiga Bean Geese x 17, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 87 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
Waxwing at Meadow View Drive, Colkirk.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 5 at Kelling Water Meadows.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 37 at Potter Heigham Marshes.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in fields north of Pig Lane, Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.

MEGA! AMERICAN COOT again at Balranald RSPB, North Uist, Western Isles.

Friday, 23 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
FERRUGINOUS DUCK on Patsy's Pool, Long-tailed Ducks x 58, Velvet Scoters x 18, Great Northern Diver, Scaup x 2, Yellow-legged Gull at Titchwell RSPB.
Arctic Skua flew south past Gorleston-on-Sea.
Waxwings x 5 at Jerningham Road, Costessey.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE, Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 3, White-fronted Goose, Hen Harrier still in Docking area.
Common Cranes x 9, Hen Harriers x 2, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 350 at Heigham Holmes.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Waxwing in garden off Sculthorpe Road, Fakenham.
Hawfinch, Crossbills x 16 at Lynford Aboretum.
Hen Harriers x 5 at Warham Greens.
Hawfinch at Santon Warren.
White-fronted Goose at Wroxham Broad.
Taiga Bean Geese x 5 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in fields at end of Pig Lane, Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Pre Christmas Update!

Its been a crazy week!

I spent several hours one evening this week, compiling the annual Christmas work quiz and typing it all up – my colleague Sara wrote 20 questions, as did I. Shortly after the quiz the following day, we celebrated Hilary's 60th birthday with lunch, which doesn't seem to be right at all, as she doesn't look more than 45! We presented her with flowers and gifts and a surprise invite to Congham Hall Hotel for Cream Tea with all of us, in early January after work one evening.

As expected, I gained 1.5 lbs at SW over the last two weeks, which considering the parties etc, it could have been far worse! Not too worried, will start again in earnest in the new year.

My Mother had another hospital this afternoon and I picked her up after work and we had a cup of tea at my house on route back to Holme. I have spent a good number of hours over the last couple of weeks, looking for the perfect outfit for my Mother to wear on Christmas day and I took my chosen outfit over to Holme this evening, for her to try on – I was over the moon, as she looked fabulous and I had chosen correctly. She never buys anything nice and I have never seen her look so lovely. I did make a mistake with the necklace though, which I need to return and exchange when I finish work tomorrow. My Mother has been worried about her light bulb on the landing, which has been dimming and flickering and decided that the electric must be dodgy and was going to call an electrician out tomorrow. But, being the stubborn person that I am, I decided it would be fine to simply put in a new long-life bulb, which I did and it was all fine – so that saved some serious dosh!!! I collected three lines of washing in, hung them up on airers and then left to return home.

I was extremely mortified and upset yesterday, when I discovered the gardening team, who are contracted to maintain the hospital grounds have cut down a huge shrub/bush, which has been in one of the courtyard gardens at least since 2001 when I started working as a Bank Nursing Auxilliary. The bush was getting on for 15ft high at least and was very much used by House Sparrows to congregate in and also roost in there nightly. I found out officially today, that the team were asked to trim it, but it has in fact been butchered to about a foot off the ground – totally heartbreaking, so that's the House Sparrows home gone. Just as frustrating last night, was watching all the hundreds of Pied Wagtails flitting around and looking distressed on top of their scalped bushes, in which they have been roosting!!! The bushes were a good height, possibly 10ft and now are about 3ft high! I had had a really good day at work until I discovered all this, late yesterday afternoon. Even my non-birding colleagues said it was unnecessary – I just don't understand why this has happened, as none of the bushes affected patients or visitors. I think I might put myself forward as 'Wildlife Consultant for the QEH'!!!

Today is my eighth year to the day exactly, that I have been working with the Stroke Team at the QEH, which I am very proud of and happy to be working with so many lovely people.

Its going to be a very busy Christmas Weekend, which kicks off with Vivien, Ray and Lucy coming over on Christmas Eve for the day at Mother's. Christmas Day will be very different this year – update on the day! Boxing Day means birding! Tuesday – not too sure yet and then back to work on Wednesday.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Waxwings x 5 at Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Long-tailed Ducks x 48, Velvet Scoters x 57, Scaup x 2 at Titchwell RSPB.
Great White Egret, Common Cranes x 5, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 600, Hen Harrier, Jack Snipe, Gannet flew over, viewable from Martham Ferry Boatyard at Heigham Holmes.
Shorelarks x 22, Velvet Scoters x 27, Long-tailed Ducks x 8, Jack Snipe x 2 at Holkham Bay, still east of Holkham Gap.
Hen Harrier just south of Horsey Gap.
Tundra Bean Geese x 17, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 7 in field at Browston Green, SE of Belton.
Water Pipit SE of Branch Road/Marsh Road junction, east of Halvergate.
Scaup at Whitlingham Country Park.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE, Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 9, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 17, Pink-footed Geese x 5,320, Barnacle Geese x 4 in field just east of B1153, 1/2 mile north of Docking.
Twite x 30 at Thornham Harbour.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Tundra Bean Geese x 8, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 7, Barnacle Goose in field east of Station Road at Weybourne.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 12, Hen Harrier, Twite x 13 at Blakeney Freshmarsh.
Tundra Bean Goose, Eurasian White-fronted Goose, Pink-footed Geese x 6,400, Barnacle Goose. SW of Shammer House, between North Creake and Stanhoe.
Snow Buntings x 30, Hen Harrier, Long-tailed Duck at Winterton.
Iceland Gull, Caspian Gull at Bentinck Dock on River Great Ouse, King's Lynn.
Spoonbill on Sea Pool between Salthouse and Cley.
Taiga Bean Geese x 3 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
Tundra Bean Geese x 7, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 3, Greenland White-fronted Goose, Pink-footed Geese x 6,050 in field west of minor road to South Creake, 1 mile NE of Syderstone.
Great Northern Diver, Long-tailed Duck offshore at Holme Dunes.
Tundra Bean Goose x 15 in field NE of Haggard's Lodge at Egmere.
Bittern, Jack Snipe at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, NE side of Beeley (no access to Dukes Barn until 2nd January 2017), 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

MEGA! KILLDEER 1w, still mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.
MEGA! FORSTER'S TERN Adult at Barna Pier, County Galway, Ireland.

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Shorelarks x 30, Hen Harrier, Twite x 20, Black-throated Divers x 2, Great Northern Diver, Long-tailed Ducks x 13, Slavonian Grebe, Velvet Scoters x 18 at Holkham Bay, still east of Holkham Gap.
Black-throated Diver, Scaup x 2, Long-tailed Ducks x 58, Velvet Scoters x 45, Spotted Redshanks x 3, Little Gulls x 24, Water Pipit at Titchwell RSPB.
Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 3, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 3, Barnacle Goose, Pink-footed Geese x 7,000 in field NE of Docking.
Black Brant west of track to Little Eye at Salthouse.
Waxwings x 4 in Jerningham Road at Costessey.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 12 west of Burnham Overy Staithe.
Taiga Bean Geese x 4, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 84 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
Scaup at Whitlingham Country Park.
Twite x 30 at Thornham Harbour.
Tundra Bean Geese x 6, Pink-footed Geese x 4,100, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 2, Barnacle Goose SE of Belton.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

RBA Weekly Round-Up 14th to 20th December!

By Andy Stoddart
http://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/v2/Content/weeklyRoundup2016-51.aspx?s_id=193745681

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
FERRUGINOUS DUCK still on Patsy's Reedbed, Scaup x 10 on freshmarsh, Hen Harrier, Long-tailed Ducks x 71, Velvets Scoters x 45, Slavonian Grebes x 2, Great Northern Diver, Water Pipit, Snow Bunting at Titchwell RSPB.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE, Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 2, Eurasian White-fronted Goose in field SE of Titchwell.
Tundra Bean Geese x 5, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 8, Pink-footed Geese x 1,000 at Beighton.
Tundra Bean Geese x 15, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 6, Pink-footed Geese x 3,000 in beet field north of A143 at Bradwell.
Pale-bellied Brent Goose, Dark-bellied Brent Geese x 600 SW of Holt.
Taiga Bean Geese x 19, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 20 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
Shorelarks x 30, Hen Harrier, Twite x 20, Black-throated Divers x 2, Slavonian Grebe, Holkham Bay, still east of Holkham Gap.
Great White Egret on pools at west end of pines at Holkham.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Cattle Egret 1/2 mile just SE of Branch Road/Marsh Road junction,  east of Halvergate.
Water Pipits x 40 at Potter Heigham Marshes.
Scaup x 7 at Blakeney Harbour, Water Pipit, Jack Snipe at Blakeney Freshmarsh.
Black Brant, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 6, Water Pipit at Salthouse.
Black Brant, Spoonbill between Watling Water and Walsey Hills at Cley.
Black-throated Divers x 2, Great Northern Diver, Long-tailed Ducks x 2 at Holme.
Twite x 30 at Thornham Harbour.
Scaup on Sunday at Whitlingham Country Park.
Snow Buntings x 40 east of Gramborough Hill, Salthouse.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in field at top of Pig Lane, Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Monday 19th December
Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Snow Buntings x 30 on beach at Winterton.
Waxwings x 5 still on Jerningham Road at Costessey.
FERRUGINOUS DUCK on Patsy's Reedbed, Scaup, Short-eared Owl, Long-tailed Ducks x 58, Great Northern Divers x 3, Red-necked Grebe, Velvet Scoters x 28, Water Pipits x 2 at Titchwell RSPB.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE in field, then flew NE with Pink-footed Geese at Choseley.
RED-BREASTED GOOSE with Pink-footed Geese x 10,000 then flew off, NW of Brancaster.
Tundra Bean Geese x 3, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 2, Pink-footed Geese x 1000 at Beighton.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 22 at Ringland Floodplain.
Scaup x 5 at Blakeney Harbour.
Tundra Bean Geese x 4, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 22, Pink-footed Geese x 2,000, White-fronted Goose at Hemsby.
Short-eared Owls x 2 on beach west of fishing boats at Cley.
Taiga Bean Geese x 13 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Twite x 30 at Thornham Harbour.
Iceland Gull juv. at duck pond at Salthouse.
Shorelarks x 23, Slavonian Grebes x 2, Great Northern Diver, Velvet Scoters x 15, Long-tailed Ducks x 13 at Holkham Bay, still east of Holkham Gap.
Tundra Bean Geese x 5 at Bradwell.
Hen Harriers x 5 at Warham Greens.
Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), White-fronted Geese x 40, Barnacle Geese x 6, Pink-footed Geese x 10,000 in field north of Docking.
Short-eared Owl at Horsey.
Black-throated Divers x 2, Long-tailed Ducks x 2 at Holme.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in field at top of Pig Lane, Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

Sunday, 18 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Purple Sandpiper on jet ski rocks at Hunstanton.
Waxwings x 4 still on Jerningham Road at Costessey.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 415 at Heigham Holmes.
Shorelarks x 30, Twite x 9, Black-throated Diver, Great Northern Diver,Velvet Scoter, Black Brant  at Holkham Bay, east of Holkham Gap.
Great White Egret, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 7 on freshmarsh at Holkham, 
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 11 flew west over Cley.
Taiga Bean Geese x 10, Dark-bellied Brent Goose, Water Pipit at Cantley Marshes RSPB.
Tundra Bean Geese x 5, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 2 at Beighton.
Long-tailed Ducks x 70, Scaup x 2, Slavonian Grebe, Great Northern Diver, Velvet Scoter, Water Pipit at Titchwell RSPB.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 10 opposite windpump at Horsey.
Caspian Gull in seal colony at Horsey.
Black-throated Divers x 2, Great Northern Divers x 2, Velvet Scoters x 3 offshore at Holme NOA.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 15 at Long Beach Caravan Park, Hemsby.
Common Cranes x 2 near steel barn at Acle Bridge.
Hawfinches x 2 at Nunnery Lakes NR, Thetford.
Tundra Bean Geese x 3, Eurasian White-fronted Geese, 39, Water Pipits x 2, Twite x 12 at Blakeney Freshmarsh.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese, 24 at Ringland Floodplain.
Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), White-fronted Geese x 5 north of Docking.
Tundra Bean Geese x 5 south of Choseley Drying Barns.
White-fronted Geese x 4 south of A149 at Weybourne.
Bewick's Swans x 4 at Ludham Airfield.
Great White Egret at Lynford Aboretum.
Short-eared Owls x 7 at Haddiscoe Island.
Hen Harriers x 3 at Warham Greens.
Twite x 49 at Thornham Harbour.
Long-tailed Ducks x 6, Slavonian Grebe, Great Northern Divers x 2, Velvet Scoters x 8 on sea at Brancaster.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH still, in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

Saturday, 17 December 2016

Birding At Last & Visit to Parents!

Visited Father this morning, who was the best I have seen him for a long time! Mind you, that was probably because he is more alert/happier in the mornings – I usually see him later afternoon/evenings. He was smiling and laughing with the staff and I got a lovely smile, when he realised I was there – made my day. He even asked 'how's Margaret?'!!! A beautiful soft, silver/grey blanket that Vivien bought Father for his 90th birthday is missing, the staff have spent a good while searching for it – it seems to have vanished, which is very frustrating – it has to be there somewhere!

Got some shopping in Hunstanton for Mother and spent a couple of hours with her and 'the spoilt cat' (as she wrote in my Christmas card). The Christmas tree I bought for her, is dropping its needles already, even with the water reservoir – hope its lasts until 25th!

Went to Titchwell RSPB for a short while, but the fog hindered birding massively. Good numbers of duck and gulls on the freshmarsh including Shoveler, Teal, Shelducks and also at least 6 Avocets in the gloom and fog. Had a very late lunch in the cafe – I was the only one there! Lots of lovely tempting things to buy in the shop, including reduced price Christmas gifts for any of your last minute shopping.

I have found out that Titchwell RSPB is open on Christmas Eve, but not on Boxing Day, whereas Cley NWT Visitor Centre is not open on Christmas Eve, but is open on Boxing Day – just in case this is useful for any of you that have the time to go birding over the Christmas period and want refreshments in a warm place.

I spent the evening with Mother watching the 'Strictly Finale' and then headed home slowly, in dense fog – not a nice journey. Work all day tomorrow. Looking forward to my four day Christmas break.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Long-tailed Ducks x 73, Scaup x 20, Slavonian Grebe, Great Northern Divers x 3, Black-throated Diver, Velvet Scoters x 46, Water Pipits x 3 at Titchwell RSPB.
Long-tailed Ducks x 24, harbour mouth at Brancaster.
Snow Buntings x 42 at Gramborough Hill, Shorelarks x 2 on beach, Eurasion White-fronted Geese x 10 near the Dun Cow at Salthouse.
Black Brant with Dark-bellied Brent Geese in Eye Field, at Cley NWT.
Twite x 40 at Thornham Harbour.
Shorelarks x 32, Twite x 9, Black-throated Diver, Great Northern Diver, Eurasion White-fronted Geese x 33 at Holkham Bay, east of Holkham Gap.
Short-eared Owl at East Hills, Wells.
Eurasion White-fronted Geese x 8 flew west, Hen Harriers x 5 at Warham Greens.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.

FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

Friday, 16 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Great White Egret yesterday at Lynford Gravel Pits.
Long-tailed Ducks x 70, Scaup x 8, Slavonian Grebe, Great Northern Diver, Black-throated Diver, Velvet Scoters x 17, Mealy Redpolls x 2 at Titchwell RSPB.
Purple Sandpiper on jet ski ramp at Hunstanton.
Black Brant, Dark-bellied Brent Geese x 500 in Eye Field, Spoonbill at Sea Pool at Cley NWT.
Bewick's Swans x 11, Whooper Swans x 14 at Ludham Airfield.
Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 2 with Pink-footed Geese in field at Choseley Drying Barns.
Black Redstart by Spending Beach, Snow Buntings x 3 at harbour entrance, Great Yarmouth.
Hen Harrier at Morston.

MEGA NEWS 
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.
MEGA! KILLDEER again, mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
DESERT WHEATEAR Male report yesterday on 29th November at Thornham Point was erroneous.
Mealy Redpoll, Water Pipit, Long-tailed Ducks x 43, Velvet Scoters x 31, Great Northern Divers x 2, Scaup, Hen Harrier at Titchwell RSPB.
Black Redstart in rear garden off Oasis Way at Hunstanton.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Black Brant in Eye Field with Dark-bellied Brent Geese, Iceland Gull juv. on Simmond's Scrape at Cley NWT.
Spoonbill at Sea Pool, Salthouse.
Waxwings x 15 on Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Todd's Canada Goose (form interior), Tundra Bean Geese x 15, Pink-footed Geese x 8,000 in field south of Choseley Drying Barns.
Shorelarks x 22, east of Holkham Gap at Holkham Bay.
Slavonian Grebe at Hemsby.
Waxwings x 2 on Henry Preston Road at Tasburgh.
Hen Harrier flew over Broadwater at Holme.
Water Pipit at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB.
Hen Harrier at Thornham Marsh.
Hen Harriers x 9 at Warham Greens.
Great White Egret at Bowthorpe Marsh.

MEGA NEWS
None.

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Snow Buntings x 44 at Blakeney Point.
Black-throated Diver, Scaup x 7 at Blakeney Harbour.
Long-tailed Ducks x 54, Scaup x 7, Great Northern Diver, Velvet Scoters x 30, Spotted Redshanks x 3, Water Pipit, Hen Harrier, Mealy Redpolls x 2, Firecrest at Titchwell RSPB.
Twite x 30, Hen Harrier at Thornham Harbour.
Black-throated Diver, Long-tailed Ducks x 12, Slavonian Grebes x 2, Velvet Scoters x 12 at Holkham Bay.
Waxwings x 2 on Henry Preston Road at Tasburgh.
Shorelarks x 2 at Little Eye, Twite x 15 at Gramborough Hill, Iceland Gull juv. at duck pond at Salthouse.
Spoonbill by East Bank, Cley NWT.
Hawfinches x 7 at Santon Warren.
Bittern at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB.
Black-throated Diver at Mundesley.
Snow Buntings x 32 on North Beach, Winterton.
DESERT WHEATEAR Male on 29th November (ID'd from photo) at Thornham Point.
Hen Harriers x 9 at Warham Greens.
Common Cranes x 2, Hen Harriers at Stubb Mill Roost, Hickling Broad NWT.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Waxwings x 5 on Jerningham Road, Costessey.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.
MEGA! KILLDEER again, mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.

RBA Weekly Round-Up 7th to 13th December!

By Andy Stoddart
http://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/v2/Content/WeeklyRoundup2016-50.aspx?s_id=198403679

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Long-tailed Ducks x 68, Scaup x 7, Velvet Scoters x 8, Water Pipits x 2 on Thornham Pool at Titchwell RSPB.
Waxwings x 20 on Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 35 at Cantley Marshes RSPB.
Waxwings x 2 on Henry Preston Road at Tasburgh.
Rough-legged Buzzard at Choseley Drying Barns.
Waxwings x 15 flew over St Stephen's roundabout, Norwich.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 2, Dark-bellied Brent Goose, Pink-footed Geese x 1000 at NNW of Cantley.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in field north of Dukes Barn at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.
MEGA! KILLDEER again, mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.

Monday, 12 December 2016

Virus and Another Puncture!

Summerville Care Home phoned me late this afternoon to say that Father had had the doctor out to him this morning as he had a temperature – the GP stated that he had a 'virus', but the care home manager said he was eating ok today. I knew something wasn't right last night.

Yesterday I had a message flash up on my car, saying that I had reduced pressure in my rear left tyre. Took the car to the garage after work this evening, to find out I had ANOTHER screw embedded in the tyre (this happened not long ago) and guess what – this tyre was a brand new one that had to replace the last tyre that could not be repaired from an embedded screw! Can you believe this has happened in the same rear left tyre!!! The garage put the spare tyre on for me and I went home. Tomorrow I have to take the car to the garage again – they are going to see if they can repair my 'new' tyre, but it may not be possible because of where it is and if so I will have to buy another new tyre!!! All because someone lazy has left screws lying around – thanks, you've cost me either £25.00 for repair or £150+!!! Not a happy bunny!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Red-necked Grebe, Great Northern Diver, Long-tailed Ducks x 50, Scaup x 5, Velvet Scoters x 11, Snow Buntings x 21, Water Pipits x 2, Hen Harrier, Lapland Buntings x 6 flew west at Titchwell RSPB.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Great White Egret flew south over Colney Gravel Pits.
Snow Buntings x 34 on beach at Winterton.
Black-throated Diver, Long-tailed Ducks x 4 at Holme.
Waxwings x 20 on Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Hawfinch at Santon Warren.
Scaup, Hen Harriers x 4 at Snettisham RSPB.
Scaup x 4 at Tottenhill Gravel Pits.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.
MEGA! KILLDEER yesterday again, mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.

Christmas Festivities!

My Mother wanted a real Christmas tree, so off I went to find one at a reasonable price – my goodness, I couldn't believe how much it costs to buy a tree now! I couldn't find a 4ft tree anywhere under £35.00! I bought one from the Sandringham Saw Mill in the end – took ages choosing one that was a nice shape. I also bought a metal base that holds water, to keep the tree going a bit longer.

Delivered tree to Mother's and took a while to re-arrange things to make room for the tree. Mother said she couldn't face decorating the tree, so I did it – it looks fantastic, even though I say so myself! Mother has lots of wonderful decorations, which she has had since we were children – its funny how these familiar decorations bring back so many happy childhood memories – the shiny gold bird who has now lost his legs, who I balanced on some tinsel, the two little ghomes with their felt hats leaning against a snow covered fir cone and so on.

We visited Father later, which was not a good visit at all. He was in a real state, very confused, shouting and distressed and didn't really seem aware that we were there. Father did eat some chocolates though! Vivien's birthday blanket was still missing – it must be somewhere in the house! Still didn't get to go birding this weekend – not good at all.

Sunday, 11 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Slavonian Grebe, Black-throated Diver, Long-tailed Ducks x 40, Scaup x 3, Velvet Scoters x 13 offshore at Titchwell RSPB.
Great Northern Diver at Martham Broad.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Snow Buntings x 23 on beach at Winterton.
Waxwings x 2 on Henry Preston Road at Tasburgh.
Shorelarks x 27, Snow Buntings x 20 at east end of Holkham Bay at Holkham Gap.
Waxwings x 23 at Costessey.
Snow Buntings x 30 at old beach car park, Salthouse.
Twite x 5, Short-eared Owls x 2 at Berney Marshes RSPB.
Bewick's Swans x 39 at Ludham Airfield.
Twite x 12 on Blakeney Freshmarsh.
Waxwing at B&Q, on Boundary Road, Norwich.
Hen Harriers x 9 at Warham Greens.
Hawfinch, Bramblings x 800 at Santon Warren.
Short-eared Owls x 2 at Chedgrave Marshes.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

MEGA! FORSTER'S TERN at Aughinish, County Clare, Ireland.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT still at Balranald RSPB, North Uist, Shetland.
MEGA! NORTHERN HARRIER probable, at Point of Ayre, Orkney.
MEGA! RED-FOOTED BOOBY in care at Mallydams Wood RSPCA. It is reportedly intended for it to be flown to the Cayman Islands. Do not contact the RSPCA as the bird is not viewable – St Leonard's, Sussex.

Saturday, 10 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Waxwing by visitor centre briefly, yesterday at Titchwell RSPB.
Long-tailed Ducks x 65, Scaup x 5, Velvet Scoters x 11 offshore, Lapland Bunting at Titchwell RSPB.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
ISABELLINE WHEATEAR still at Gun Hill, Burnham Overy Dunes.
Hume's Yellow-browed Warbler still, viewed from footpath at edge of Scratby Hall.
Tundra Bean Geese x 6 on Blakeney Freshes.
Twite x 12 on marsh at Blakeney.
Waxwings x 22 on Jerningham Road, Costessey.
Great White Egret flew over A47 1 mile west of A140 junction, Norwich.
Spoonbill just west of west bank, Snow Bunting and Velvet Scoter flew west along beach at Cley.
Caspian Gull on Simmond's Scrape at Cley NWT.
Glaucous Gull flew west over Gramborough Hill at Salthouse.
Waxwing on Henry Preston Road at Tasburgh.
Great Northern Diver at Martham Broad.
Shorelarks x 45 at east end of Holkham Bay at Holkham Gap.
Rough-legged Buzzard reported in tree on freshmarsh, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 33 on freshmarsh at Holkham.
Great White Egret at Welney WWT.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

Friday, 9 December 2016

Stroke Rehabilitation Christmas Party!


Dukes Head Hotel, King's Lynn!

Fabulous party – one of the best I can remember, of what I can remember! I don't drink at all or rarely any way, but always have a good session at our Christmas work party! I begrudge the price of drinks, so always start off with a 3/4 glass of brandy at home! This is usually drank at the last minute, whilst waiting for my glittery nails to dry, as was the case last night.

Several of us met round Sarah's house for a tipple before leaving for the party. The brandy had taken a very quick effect and I was giggling and waffling, even before I started the prosecco wine we were drinking! Those that were not drinking for various reasons (pregnancy etc) very kindly gave the rest of us a lift to the party.

We were greeted with glasses of more prosecco wine at the door of the The Dukes Head Hotel and I managed to cheekily collect a few more for my table a little later on! The food was excellent and we were all flying round the dance floor later. But the highlight of the evening was the new Stroke Rehab Choir – people on our table started singing christmas songs in a really fun way with Rosie and Lily using the table as a drum, it was awesome and especially to Lily and Keri for their brilliant moves! I took a video, but mine was naff – Bev has a brilliant one, which I am hoping she is going to email me, so I can upload it on here.

There was six of us left at the end (see headline picture). I was very disappointed to have missed Cilla's signature cartwheel just before she left! Bev and I departed just before 12am in a taxi with one of the helium balloon table decorations, which I was going to bring to work on Monday to add to our festive decorations, but it had all deflated by Saturday morning, as was I!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Long-tailed Ducks x 35, Velvet Scoters x 8, Scaup, Slavonian Grebe at Titchwell RSPB.
Great Northern Diver at Martham Broad.
Spoonbill on sea pool, Bewick's Swan flew east at Cley.
Hume's Yellow-browed Warbler still, viewed from footpath at edge of Scratby Hall.
Rough-legged Buzzard at Choseley Drying Barns.
ISABELLINE WHEATEAR still at Gun Hill, Burnham Overy Dunes.
Waxwings x 5 on Henry Preston Road at Tasburgh.
Waxwing briefly on Churchfield Road at Long Sutton.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Shorelarks x 24 at east end of Holkham Bay, Black Brant reported at Holkham Gap.
Great White Egret flew over Lynford GP, Water Pipit at Lynford Aboretum.
Shorelarks x 7 at Wells.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

Thursday, 8 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Scaup x 4 offshore at Thornham Point.
Hume's Yellow-browed Warbler still, viewed from footpath at edge of Scratby Hall.
Little Bunting trapped and ringed at Guist Common.
Great White Egrets x 2 flew west over Blakeney Freshes.
Great White Egrets x 2 flew south over Happisburgh.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Taiga Bean Geese x 11, Eurasian White-fronted Geese x 23 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.
ISABELLINE WHEATEAR still at Gun Hill, Burnham Overy Dunes.
Great Northern Diver at Martham Broad.
Water Pipits x 2 at Titchwell RSPB.
Scaups x 4, White-fronted Goose at Tottenhill Gravel Pits.
Great White Egret, Scaup at Narford Lake.
Great White Egret at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB.
Shorelarks x 15 at east end of Holkham Bay at Holkham Gap.
Scaup on Little Broad, Ormesby, Ormesby St Margaret.

MEGA NEWS 
MEGA! SLATE-COLOURED JUNCO in garden on East Road at SW end of West Mersea on Mersea Island, Essex.
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.
MEGA! KILLDEER again, mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.

MEGA! FORSTER'S TERN at Broadstrand, County Cork, Ireland.

Memory Lane at Holme Bird Observatory!

Peter Clarke at Holme Bird Observatory  © Geoff Douglas
I have tried to lift the colours a bit in photoshop though!

Birders and friends Geoff and Pat Douglas very kindly found this picture and sent it to me yesterday of Father at Holme Bird Observatory. They think it was taken in the mid '80's.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Rough-legged Buzzard in tree by Thornham Marsh, Mealy Redpoll in alders, Velvet Scoters x 25, Hen Harrier, Long-tailed Ducks x 61, Scaup, Spotted Redshanks x 2, Water Pipits x 2, Jack Snipe, Spotted Redshanks x 3 at Titchwell RSPB.
Great White Egret at Breydon Water.
Shorelarks x 25 at east end of Holkham Bay, Long-tailed Ducks x 4, Velvet Scoters x 31 at Holkham Gap.
Great Northern Diver, Bewick's Swans x 4 at Martham Broad.
Shorelark, Snow Buntings x 20 on beach near cafe, Velvet Scoters x 2 at Winterton.
Hen Harrier between Hoveton and Coltishall.
Waxwings x 10 at Chapel Bank Road, Bowthorpe.
Great White Egret at Bowthorpe Marsh.
Bewick's Swans x 7, Caspian Gulls x 2 on Simmond's Scrape at Cley NWT.
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Great White Egret on water meadows at Easton + Otley College, near Marlingford.
Snow Buntings x 35 at Salthouse.
Hen Harriers x 4 at Warham Greens.
Twite x 2 at Thornham Harbour.
Hen Harrier at Claxton Marshes.
Long-tailed Ducks x 2 recently on sea at Snettisham Coastal Park.
Hume's Yellow-browed Warbler viewed from footpath at dusk, at edge of Scratby Hall.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH near church, also in School Lane and in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.
MEGA! KILLDEER again, mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.

More Success!

Another 3lbs lost in weight lost at SW this evening – that's 9lb in total now so far! The long and rocky road to a new me! Slim by Spring!

RBA Weekly Round-Up 30th November to 6th December!

By Andy Stoddart
http://www.rarebirdalert.co.uk/v2/Content/WeeklyRoundup2016-49.aspx?s_id=1063010095

Fair Isle: Living on the Edge, Episode 2

Episode 2 – shown on BBC1 Scotland on Monday at 9pm.

Two-part documentary revealing life on Fair Isle, Britain's most remote inhabited island. Have the island's newest inhabitants survived their first winter and decided to stay on?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b084jyl0/fair-isle-living-on-the-edge-episode-2

See here for link to Episode 1:
http://pennyshotbirdingandlife.blogspot.co.uk/2016/11/fair-isle-living-on-edge-episode-1.html

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Tuesday 6th December
Cattle Egret in cattle field, north of Ted Ellis NR entrance track at Surlingham.
Shorelarks x 2, Lapland Bunting at east end of Holkham Bay.
Great White Egret at Holkham Freshmarsh.
Great Northern Diver at Martham Broad.
Black-throated Diver, Great Northern Diver, Scaup x 3, Velvet Scoters x 19, Long-tailed Ducks x 35, Water Pipit at Titchwell RSPB.
Snow Buntings x 30 at north end of beach at Winterton.
Hawfinches x 15 at Santon Warren.
Snow Buntings x 22 on beach at Holme.
Waxwings x 3 off gym on Barrack Street, Norwich.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH in orchard at Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.
MEGA! KILLDEER again, mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.

Monday, 5 December 2016

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

Norfolk Bird News via 'Rare Bird Alert'
Black-throated Divers x 2, Red-necked Grebe, Great Northern Divers x 3, Velvet Scoters x 14, Long-tailed Ducks x 55, Spotted Redshank, Scaup x 6, Water Pipits x 2, Little Gulls x 10, Jack Snipe x 2 at Titchwell RSPB.
Lapland Bunting flew north over Nunnery Lakes NR, Thetford.
ISABELLINE WHEATEAR still, between boardwalk and Gun Hill at Burnham Overy Dunes.
Snow Buntings x 40 at Gramborough Hill, Salthouse.
Hawfinches x 4 at Santon Warren.
Mealy Redpolls x 2, Lesser Redpolls x 20 at by Marriott's Way at Lenwade.
Long-tailed Ducks x 11, Velvet Scoters x 30, Great Northern Diver at Holkham Bay.
Rough-legged Buzzard juv. in tree by stubble field SE of Choseley Drying Barns.
Black-throated Diver, Great Northern Diver, Long-tailed Ducks x 7, Slavonian Grebes x 2 at Holme.
Taiga Bean Geese x 10 at Buckenham Marshes RSPB.

MEGA NEWS
MEGA! DUSKY THRUSH again in garden in Beeley, 5mls NNW of Matlock, Derbyshire.
FIRST FOR BRITAIN! MASKED WAGTAIL (Motacilla alba personata) – again at Croft Villas, 2.5mls NNW of Haverfordwest at Camrose, Pembrokeshire.

MEGA! KILLDEER again, mainland at Sandwick, Shetland.
MEGA! AMERICAN COOT again, mainland at Balranald RSPB, North Uist, Western Isles.