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Thursday, 1 January 2015

New Year's Day Birding – Snettisham RSPB!

I have had a minor sore throat for the last couple of days, nothing to grumble about, it didn't develop in to anything.... that is until this morning! I had set the alarm for 6am. I was going to have a different day this year. I had decided that instead of racing round in a frenzied attempt to get the biggest day list, that I would walk Blakeney Point and at the same time hopefully see and photograph the Shorelarks – this wasn't to be either. I awoke feeling like absolute crap – temperature, cold, basically rough as hell! Went back to sleep, kept waking up as I wanted to go out birding, but I was beaten. Carried on sleeping. Eventually got up. Ate a sandwich which I had made last night for my trek out to BP and fell asleep on the sofa under a blanket. Even with paracetamol I felt awful.

I pushed myself to go out birding in the afternoon and went to Snettisham RSPB. It was a dreary day in Norfolk – grey skies and very strong winds. I wrapped up well and battled in the winds to make it to Rotary hide. What the hell was I doing out here!!!? Crazy! I made it and collapsed in the hide. There was a dead seal directly in front of the hide on the beach, which the Glaucous Gull has been feeding on. For a few moments I thought I was looking at the glaucous gull on the beach – which was very distant (was in fact was a juv. Great Black-backed Gull!!! LOL) and when I swung round and looked in the pits, I realised that the Glaucous Gull was sitting on the edge of a scrape!!! Oh well. Managed to get a very short video before it flew off closer to the edge of the scrapes and almost out of view and a few rubbish shots on the SLR. The Black-necked Grebe put in a brief appearance. A pair of Goldeneyes graced the waters – love these ducks.

Thousands of waders on the mudflats including Ringed Plovers, Grey Plovers, Oystercatchers, Lapwings, Shelducks, Teal, Wigeon, Curlew, Redshanks, Brent Geese etc. A massive flock of Oystercatchers were disturbed by a dog as they settled to roost. I was utterly exhausted as I walked back to the car. A Merlin shot past me as I walked back! Only other birds seen were Little Grebe, Magpies, Robin, Blackbirds, Little Grebes, Mallards.

I felt so ill when I pulled up into my drive, that I stayed in the car and shut my eyes for half an hour before getting out. Woken up by rain in the car.

Compared to others today though, my day has been pretty amazing. My heart and thoughts go out to S.B. and G.R both of whom have lost dearly loved ones on Christmas Eve and today – happy memories never fade – these can never be taken from you – RIP x x.

Andy W., Justin L. C & A. Baker and another birder all got to see the Little Bustard and the Blyth's Pipit in Yorkshire today!

A huge thank you to all the lovely emails I have received over the last few days, I still have some to reply to, please bear with me!


1 comment:

  1. I think that that Little Bustard's egg was facing the wrong way around in the nest...
    it thinks North is South!!

    Oh to have seen it!
    They breed just to the North of us...
    between Tours and Orleans...
    in a region called "The Champaigne"...
    nothing to do with the drink...
    and, NO...
    we haven't yet seen any!!

    The literal translation of the French name is...
    The Farting Duck!!