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Wednesday 14 October 2020

Fabulous Fall Of Birds Along Norfolk Coast!

Annoyingly my kitchen/diner (old fashioned) ring light decided to die last night, so I had no choice but to go to the only place where I can buy them locally at 8am when they open. So this delayed me getting out birding as early as I had intended! They also didn't have one in stock, but 'can get me one in for Friday', well it probably won't get picked up until Monday after work, as not wasting a single moment of daylight with East wind birding! Will be making my sandwiches in semi-darkness shortly!
Garden Drove, Warham Greens
Frustratingly I started birding in the wrong place! TWO Pallas's Warblers bleeped up on the RBA pager, one at Holme Dunes NWT and one at the NOA! I stuck with my plan, it often doesn't pay to go racing off to every bird that turns up, well ok sometimes it does!

On the way, I checked out the Hoopoe spot at Wighton, no sign at all, but two Red Kites nearby. Parked up on the concrete pad at Garden Drove – several cars here. Even though I didn't find anything spectacular, the numbers of migrants were incredible! All the way along the track it was dripping with birds: Blackbirds, Redwings, Robins, Goldcrests, Blue Tits, Great Tits, Hedge Sparrows, Wrens and at the north end just before the copse, Bramblings were feeding on the path, along with Goldfinches and Chaffinches. There were so many birds crisscrossing over me, I didn't know which way to look first! Along the hedgerow west of the north end, it was jam packed with finches, notably Greenfinches, which I have not seen any of for a good while. I spent a while in the copse looking for a bluetail, but none found – lots of Blackbirds and Redwings in here.

I ambled west to the western pit in hope of seeing Ashley Banwell's Barred Warbler he found yesterday, but only found Reed Buntings, Blackbirds and Redwings. Brent Geese and Little Egrets were on the salt marsh and I noted several Carrion Crows were flying over south. Back at my car I left and headed west.
Continental Blackbird at Wells Woods

Wells Woods
I was disappointed walking round Wells Woods – I didn't see as many birds here as I did along Garden Drove! Redwings, Blackbirds, Robins and a few Goldcrests were seen. Walked to the drinking pool and the glade west of there and managed to dig out a few Blackbirds and Wrens, but nothing else. Walked along the main path, part way to Holkham in hope of finding my own Pallas's Warbler, but no luck with that! I noted later that someone else did in that same area! Be very careful when you purchase a ticket on the pay machines in the car park – double check how many hours you have submitted, I had intended on selecting 2 hours for £3.50, but instead clicked 4 hours for £6.50!
East Hills, Wells

East Hills, Wells
A fabulous afternoon out here with other birders! After a lot of searching and waiting, I managed to eventually see a stunning Red-flanked Bluetail that Ashley Banwell had found earlier today. Several other birders watched this bird perched up and all I managed was a good close flight view, as it dived over some brambles, so very sadly (and I tried very hard) I didn't get a single smudgy picture of this cracking bird, but at least I saw it! I got luckier with a cracking Pallas's Warbler – wow they are such striking and magical little birds! It was only yards away from me, feeding amongst some bramble, I took one picture only, before it disappeared from view and that wasn't a particularly good shot! Lots of Redwings, Blackbirds and Fieldfares out here, along with Robins, Wrens, a couple of Chiffchaffs and lots of Goldcrests in the main sycamore glade. Later on a Merlin flew across the sea. Arrived home late! 

See my best pictures of a Pallas's Warbler HERE on 10th October 2010.

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