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Sunday, 30 October 2016

Local Birding & Weekend Update!

Chiffchaff feeding late afternoon at Titchwell RSPB!

Its been a very stressful week, with my Mother not well and all kinds of crap going on. I spent Saturday feeling drained and not very well and then had to go to Holme to take my Mother birthday shopping for Father. I really wanted to go to Cley to see the cracking male Desert Wheatear, but it didn't happen.

Today I headed for Choseley Drying Barns, where I had a massive flock of Goldfinches perched on the wires just before the barns and a Wren was sitting on the public footpath signpost, but nothing else of note.

Had fabulous views of 15 Waxwings perched on birches in Roman Way at the Branodunum Estate at Brancaster, but poor for photography as silhouetted again white/grey skies.
Waxwings at Brancaster

Parked the car at Brancaster Staithe and walked west along the public footpath – heard a Cetti's Warbler, saw a Little Egret, Curlew, Redshanks, Kestrel, flocks of Starlings, Great Tit and a Blackbird, nothing else more exciting. Returned to the car and headed west.

Titchwell RSPB – main aim: to see the Dusky Warbler, but failed miserably. In the gloom of late afternoon, several of us thought we were watching the Dusky Warbler, when in fact it was a Chiffchaff! It didn't call at all and on hindsight, was feeding and showing too high up in the foliage for a Dusky. Studying my photos properly back at home (and seeking further advice), it also didn't look 'dusky' enough, legs too thick and had straight wing rather than rounded, too green and supercilium not strong/long enough etc. It's very easy to get carried away with what you want to see, especially when everyone else does too!  – got a cracking picture of a Chiffchaff though! Lesson learn't! Several Bramblings were in the same clump of willows.

Found a male Stonechat on the grazing marsh and a Barn Owl was close by. Goldcrest, Robins and Long-tailed Tits were around the Meadow Trail. The only adrenalin rush I got this weekend was being spooked several times by ghoules set up around the reserve for halloween!!! I do wish we didn't medal with time – I hate putting the clocks back an hour!

Spent the evening keeping my Mother company and doing some jobs. I'm glad I have seen a Pine Bunting in Norfolk already! I saw the Choseley bird in February 2004, which was the second one for Norfolk.


  1. My son Jon took virtually the same photo and we too thought it was a Dusky. See the photo on Bird Guides under Titchwell site and also view comments. A good lesson in warbler ID though!

  2. Hi David! Just read the comments about your son's photo on Birdguides. A good lesson in warbler ID – I agree! Several good birders also looked at my picture and thought it was the Dusky Warbler – a lesson for us all, keeps us on our toes!