NORFOLK BIRD NEWS AND UK MEGA'S POSTED DAILY, PHOTOS, BIRDING AND MORE! MY 11th YEAR ANNIVERSARY 2021!


Ring RARE BIRD ALERT with your sightings to: 01603 456789 or Hotline: 0207 0382820 or Text: 07520 634324
Norfolk Bird News & Megas via The Rare Bird Alert Website – Subscribe To RBA For Detailed News & Much More!

OVER SEVEN MILLION VIEWS! If you would like to advertise here, as CleySpy and Oriole Birding have done,
please contact me at [pennyclarke@talktalk.net]

Saturday, 19 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Marsh Warbler at Kelling Quags
Glossy Ibis, Garganey x 2, Wood Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank, Spoonbills x 3 at Brendan's Marsh, Hickling Broad NWT 
Black Redstart, Spoonbills x 3, Little Gull at Cley NWT
Spoonbills x 2 flew over Kelling Heath
Spoonbill flew over Morston Quay
Black Tern at Blakeney Point
Cattle Egret, Arctic Terns x 2, Garganey x 2, Spoonbills x 7, Spotted Redshanks x 7 at Titchwell RSPB
Spoonbills x 2 flew over Brancaster Staithe
Little Gulls x 2, Spoonbill, Spotted Redshanks x 2 at Ken Hill Marsh, Snettisham Coastal Park
Wood Sandpipers x 3, Spotted Redshanks x 2 at Burnham Overy Marshes
 
MEGA NEWS
LEAST TERN
Portrane, County Dublin, Ireland

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

FRIDAY 18th JUNE
Marsh Warbler at Kelling Quags
Glossy Ibises x 2 at Hickling Broad NWT 
Long-tailed Duck ad. fem. on freshmarsh, Spoonbill flew over Titchwell RSPB
Rose-coloured Starling in garden at Langham
Little Gull at Cley NWT
 
MEGA NEWS
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

Thursday, 17 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Spoonbill flew over Sedgeford
Glossy Ibises x 2, Garganey x 4, Spoonbills x 6 at Hickling Broad NWT
Roseate Tern flew past beach car park at Cley
Spoonbill, Great White Egrets x 2 at Cley NWT
Cattle Egret, Great White Egret at Holme
Spotted Redshanks x 3 at Titchwell RSPB
Little Gull, at Snettisham RSPB
Marsh Warbler at Kelling Quags
Spoonbills x 2, Little Gulls x 3 at Snettisham Coastal Park
Rose-coloured Starling on cricket pitch (then flew west) at Fakenham
Great White Egret at Sculthorpe Moor Nature Reserve
Spoonbill at Bodham
Corncrakes x 2 (both males) west of River Wensum, south of Drayton
Corncrake heard only WNW of Norwich
Short-eared Owl at Salthouse
BEE-EATERS x 2 on wires at New-Cutt Farm at Great Yarmouth
 
MEGA NEWS
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

Wednesday, 16 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Marsh Warbler, Spoonbills x 2 flew over at Kelling Quags
Purple Heron, Garganey, Little Gull, Spotted Redshanks x 2, Continental Black-tailed Godwits x 3 at Titchwell RSPB
COLLARED PRATINCOLE, Glossy Ibises x 2 , Garganey x 4, Spoonbills x 6, Great White Egret at Brendan's Marsh, Hickling Broad NWT
BEE-EATERS x 5 flew west over Kelling Heath
Spoonbill, Little Gulls x 6 at Ken Hill Marsh, Snettisham Coastal Park
Turtle Dove, Cattle Egret, Great White Egret at Holme
Spoonbill, Great White Egrets x 2, Little Gull at Cley NWT
Corncrake heard only WNW of Norwich
 
MEGA NEWS
RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD
Male, on Friday, in garden at Castleconnor, SSW of Enniscrone, County Sligo, Ireland
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

Tuesday, 15 June 2021

Marsh Warbler at Kelling Water Meadows & Sunset Stroll Along East Bank at Cley NWT

MARSH WARBLER
Kelling Water Meadows


 

After a difficult couple of days, which I can't discuss on here, I decided to escape this evening, before I lost the plot completely! It was a stunning day, but an even better evening, as it was cooler! As most of you know, I don't do hot weather! Arrived at Kelling and ambled to the Water Meadows. I passed four birders leaving, who kindly told me that no one was left, but the Marsh Warbler had been showing well. It was such a joy to be out, the light was beautiful and hirundines were skimming over the pool. Several Linnets seen, a Reed Bunting perched up singing on a hawthorn bush, Cuckoos flying around and calling and Carrion Crows verbally making their presence known.

Linnet at Kelling Water Meadows
 
 
Big bird flying over Kelling Water Meadows!!!

 

Just after the pool around the left corner and not far along, there was obvious signs of flattened grass where people had been standing to watch the Marsh Warbler, so knew I was at the right spot! I heard and saw the fabulous Marsh Warbler more or less straight away and spent a long time watching and listening to it in the evening sunshine. I was the only person here for a long time and then another couple joined me for a while. The repertoire from the Marsh Warbler was just beautiful to listen to and included Bee-eater, Blackbird, Sedge Warbler, Goldfinch, Skylark, Swallow..... and more! However, most of the time the Marsh Warbler was obscured by reed stems, but I got lucky once when it landed on a bramble! Eventually, I tore myself away and returned to my car.

MARSH WARBLER
Kelling Water Meadows

Starlings, west of the East Bank at Cley NWT 

 

Walked along the East Bank at Cley and although it was very late, it was a lovely walk and worth every step. A huge flock of Starlings landed by the sluice gate – adults and juveniles, feeding on the path and the grass below the bank, chattering away and preening, so lovely to watch. I photographed them as they flew off over pink skies and landed to roost in the reedbeds west of the path – no Rosie ones! Marsh Harriers seen, Shelducks, Avocets, Redshanks, Mallards, Black-headed Gulls, Mute Swans and Little Egrets in the fading light. Walked to the beach and misjudged the waves, whilst taking pictures and got two wet shoes and trousers! Created a heart of stones on a concrete slab and walked back along the East Bank. The sunset was so beautiful and even at 10.15pm it looked truly spectacular!

West of The East Bank at Cley NWT
 
Coastguards from the East Bank at Cley NWT
 

MORE PICTURES & VIDEO TO BE ADDED FRIDAY EVENING

On returning home, I was very saddened to hear about the death of the elderly lady Margaret Smith who had gone missing from Lincoln House Care Home in Swanton Morley at 9.30pm on Sunday evening. There had a been a huge community response to search for her, along with specialist teams and police since the evening she went missing. Tragically, someone found her this afternoon, not too far away from the care home, it seems. This is such an incredibly sad end to a very vulnerable lady. My sincerest condolences to her son Murray Smith, who is a birder on Twitter – I don't know Murray personally, but my heart goes out to him, his wife, family and friends – what a difficult and very sad day for so many people. Rest in peace Margaret 🥀.

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Glossy Ibises x 2, Spoonbills x 3 at Hickling Broad NWT
Marsh Warbler at Kelling Quags
Glossy Ibis, Cattle Egret (probable) at Welney WWT
Garganey, Spotted Redshank, Continental Black-tailed Godwits x 5 at Titchwell RSPB
Cattle Egret at Holme Dunes NWT
Great White Egret at Cley NWT
Corncrake heard only WNW of Norwich
Little Gull at Sheringham
 
MEGA NEWS
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

RBA Weekly Round-Up 8th to 14th June!

By Jon Dunn

Monday, 14 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Red-backed Shrike male SE of beach shelter at West Runton
Marsh Warbler at Kelling Quags
Glossy Ibises x 2, Spoonbills x 5, Garganey x 3 at Hickling Broad NWT
Curlew Sandpiper, Spotted Redshank, Continental Black-tailed Godwits x 3 at Titchwell RSPB
Rose-coloured Starlings x 2 with Starlings on Wednesday morning, Wood Sandpiper recently, Little Gull on Saturday at Titchwell RSPB
Spoonbill at Burnham Overy Staithe
Common Crane flew over Cley NWT
Cattle Egret at Holme Dunes NWT
Little Gull flew past Sheringham
Corncrake heard only WNW of Norwich
Rose-coloured Starling reported at Cromer
Night Heron ad. flew north of Great Ryburgh
 
MEGA NEWS
EGYPTIAN VULTURE
Tresco and St Mary's, Isles of Scilly
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

Sunday, 13 June 2021

Weekend Update!

Yesterday I was recovering from work and had no energy to do anything or go anywhere in this heat. Today, it was my scheduled Sunday to work, which although was a very productive day, was insanely hot! Changed all my bird baths when I returned home for the second time today and the Starlings loved bathing in the fresh cold water. My fat balls and blocks are being demolished daily, but no Rose-coloured Starling arrived yet, which is unlikely in my town garden anyway. This evening was spent chilling with all the curtains closed!

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Corncrake heard only WNW of Norwich
Marsh Warbler at Kelling Quags
Little Gulls x 4 at Ken Hill Marsh, Turtle Dove at Snettisham Coastal Park
Siberian Chiffchaff at East Hills, Wells
Spoonbill flew over Burnham Norton
Glossy Ibis, Common Cranes x 2, Spoonbill at Welney WWT
Turtle Dove, Cattle Egret at Holme Dunes NWT
Short-eared Owl, Wood Sandpiper, Little Gull, Spoonbills x 3 at Cley NWT
Turtle Dove at wood in Wreningham
Spotted Redshank, Spoonbills x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
 
MEGA NEWS
LITTLE SWIFT
St Ives, Cornwall
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

Saturday, 12 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Marsh Warbler, Little Gull at Kelling Quags
Spoonbills x 4 at Burnham Deepdale
Spoonbills x 5 at Cley NWT
Common Crane flew over Salthouse, Cley, Wiveton, Warham Greens
Quails x 2 at Salthouse
Honey Buzzard flew over Sheringham
Cattle Egret at Holme Dunes NWT
Osprey flew over Ranworth Broad
Rose-coloured Starling at North Dunes, Winterton
Quail at Ken Hill Marsh, Snettisham Coastal Park
Turtle Doves x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
Corncrake heard only WNW of Norwich
Siberian Chiffchaff at East Hills, Wells
Night Heron (presumed escaped) SE of Lenwade
 
MEGA NEWS
PACIFIC SWIFT
East Chevington NWT, Northumberland
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

Friday, 11 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Rose-coloured Starling in garden at Cley
Golden Oriole flew west past West Runton
Glossy Ibis x 4 at Welney WWT
Cattle Egret flew over Ken Hill Marsh, Snettisham Coastal Park
Common Crane at Holkham Freshmarsh
Quail singing at Weybourne Camp
Spoonbill at Burnham Overy Staithe
Great White Egret at Breydon Water
Hen Harrier male flew over, Cattle Egret from The Saltings at Holme
Marsh Warbler at Kelling Quags
Little Gull at Salthouse
 
MEGA NEWS
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset
CALANDRA LARK
Still at Fair Isle, Shetland

Thursday, 10 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Balearic Shearwater flew west past Cromer
Little Gull at Hunstanton
Osprey at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB
Turtle Dove at Hungry Hill, Northrepps
Spoonbills x 4 at Snettisham Coastal Park
Turtle Dove at Snettisham RSPB
Short-eared Owls x 2, Little Gulls x 2 at Cley NWT
Garganey at Hockwold Washes
Spoonbills x 12, Great White Egret at Stiffkey Fen
Short-eared Owl at Horsey
Raven flew over cemetery at Wymondham
Rose-coloured Starling in garden at Gorleston-on-Sea
Quails x 2 at Walsey Hills NOA
 
MEGA NEWS
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset
CALANDRA LARK
Still at Fair Isle, Shetland

Solar Eclipse 2021: Eclipse Lights Up Sky!

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/world-57430146

https://www.independent.co.uk/space/solar-eclipse-2021-uk-us-lunar-b1863115.html

https://www.theguardian.com/science/gallery/2021/jun/10/solar-eclipse-2021-the-crescent-sun-in-pictures

https://www.sciencefocus.com/space/solar-eclipse-2021-uk/

David Bryant in Norfolk took the following pictures:
https://twitter.com/HeathlandDavid/status/1403005411238703115

Rebecca Nason in Shetland took this:
https://twitter.com/puffinpassion/status/1403025136731709445

Fabulous footage from David and Rebecca! Here in Norfolk, I was doing therapy with a patient in their home, but in any case, it was very cloudy here all morning and very muggy throughout the day!

Wednesday, 9 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Rose-coloured Starling on saltmarsh between Titchwell & Thornham
Spoonbill at Breydon Water 
Black Redstart at Titchwell RSPB
Rose-coloured Starlings x 2 east of Garden Drove at Warham Greens
Balearic Shearwater (possible) flew west past Cromer
Rose-coloured Starling along Beach Road at Wells
Common Cranes x 7 at Welney WWT
Turtle Dove, Spoonbill at Snettisham RSPB
Spoonbills x 2 at Titchwell RSPB
Quail singing at Grimston Heath
Spoonbills x 9 at Burnham Overy Staithe
 
MEGA NEWS
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

Tuesday, 8 June 2021

AT LAST!!! LUCY WAS ALLOWED TO GO IN MY CAR FOR A DAY OUT!!!

Ely Cathedral and Tea Room Gardens!

 

AT LAST! I was able to take Lucy out in my car for the first time since my birthday on 27th January 2020! One year and five months ago!!!

A few days ago, I discovered a new update on the government website that stated "public transport should be avoided but travelling in a family car or private taxi would be acceptable". I sent all the details and links to the Manager where Lucy lives and they agreed that Lucy could go out in my car as of late yesterday afternoon. So a trip was quickly organised for today!

I picked Lucy up at 10am and we arrived in Ely at 11am to meet Vivien for lunch. We parked the car up by Vivien's and Ray's narrowboat and then walked in the scorching heat to Ely Cathedral tea rooms. What a beautiful setting, see top picture! Watched the Peregrines cruising around the tower – there is a web cam on their nest. There was a very tame Robin visiting everyone's tables, waiting for crumbs to drop and a few Blackbirds were collecting food in the beautiful gardens. We managed to get the last outside table at 11.40am! The lunch and dessert was devine, see below!

Whilst we sat here, I thought I recognised someone standing in the queue, wearing a face mask and waiting to be seated, was it Gemma? It was indeed Gemma I soon realised, with her gorgeous little girl Erin (aged 2). I work with Gemma, she is a lovely physio in my team! So lovely to see her here!


After our lunch, we ambled back to the marina  and sat outside in our deckchairs by Vivien and Ray's boat and chatted away for the rest of the afternoon. We were joined by the local Muscovy Ducks, Mallards and a Collared Dove. When Ray arrived home from work, we all had fish n chips for tea. Lucy and I also realised that we had not seen Ray since we all met up at the Castle Rising Tea Rooms with Vivien on 22nd December 2019!!! A very relaxed and lovely day with my sisters and Ray. Lucy really enjoyed herself, it was so nice to be able to take her out of King's Lynn. Its been such a long time! Arrived back in King's Lynn at around 8.30pm.

A few more pictures to be added

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Rose-coloured Starling at South Dunes, Winterton
Quails x 2 singing east of Walsey Hills NOA
Rose-coloured Starling west of beach car park at West Runton
Red-footed Falcon fem. at Hickling Broad NWT
Rose-coloured Starling flew between Cromer & Overstrand
Black Redstart male at Holme NOA & Holme Dunes NWT
Turtle Doves x 2 at Snettisham RSPB
Rose-coloured Starling in garden at Mundesley
BEE-EATER flew over Potter Heigham
Rose-coloured Starling recently in garden at Watton
Common Cranes x 7 at Welney WWT
Turtle Dove in garden at Langham
Common Crane at Holkham Freshmarsh

MEGA NEWS 
SULPHUR-BELLIED WARBLER
Lundy Island, Devon
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset

MEGA NEWS! SULPHUR-BELLIED WARBLER ON LUNDY ISLAND! 1st for Britain, 2nd for Europe!

WOW! INCREDIBLE!!!

PICTURE HERE:
 
 
Discussion here:
 

RBA Weekly Round-Up 1st to 7th June!

By Jon Dunn

Monday, 7 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Red-footed Falcon fem. at Hickling Broad NWT
Spoonbills x 2, Great White Egret at Burnham Norton
Spoonbill at Cley NWT
Common Crane at Holkham Freshmarsh
Rose-coloured Starling at Kelling Water Meadows
Spoonbill at Burnham Overy Staithe
Quail singing east of Walsey Hills NOA
Rose-coloured Starling late afternoon at Holme Dunes NWT
Rose-coloured Starling at Beach Road, Winterton
Rose-coloured Starling on Saturday in gardens all day at Lyng

MEGA NEWS 
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset
RED-NECKED STINT
Blyth Estuary, NW of Blyth, Northumberland
WHITE-THROATED SPARROW
On 28th May at sea on VOS Faithful Ship, c124 miles east of Peterhead

Sunday, 6 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Quail singing at Beetley
Rose-coloured Starling at Kelling Water Meadows
Turtle Doves x 2, Curlew Sandpiper, Little Gulls x 5, Spoonbills x 6, Great White Egret at Ken Hill Marsh, Snettisham Coastal Park
Turtle Dove at Snettisham RSPB 
Red-footed Falcon fem., Spoonbill at Hickling Broad NWT
Hen Harrier male, Cattle Egret, Common Crane at Holkham Freshmarsh
Turtle Dove at Salthouse Heath
Little Gull flew past Coastguards at Cley
Spoonbills x 2 at Cley NWT
Red-backed Shrike male at Aylmerton
Red-footed Falcon 1s. male flew over, Honey Buzzard, Cattle Egret, Spoonbills x 2 at Sheringham
Spoonbills x 2 at Breydon Water
Spoonbill at Horsey Mere
Spoonbills x 6 at Burnham Norton
Rose-coloured Starling at caravan site with Starlings at Beeston Bump, Sheringham
Purple Heron, Garganey at Strumpshaw Fen RSPB
Curlew Sandpiper at Titchwell RSPB
Turtle Doves x 2 NW of Kimberley

MEGA NEWS 
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset
RED-NECKED STINT
Blyth Estuary, NW of Blyth, Northumberland

Saturday, 5 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Little Gulls x 2, Continental Black-tailed Godwits at Titchwell RSPB
Quail singing at Beetley
Turtle Doves x 2, Little Stint, Curlew Sandpiper, Little Gulls x 5, Spoonbills x 2, Great White Egret at Ken Hill Marsh, Snettisham Coastal Park
Spoonbill flew over Happisburgh
Rose-coloured Starling flew over Beeston Bump, Sheringham
Rose-coloured Starling west of Laburnum Holiday Park, West Runton
Common Crane at Holkham Freshmarsh
Red-footed Falcon at Hickling Broad NWT
Honey Buzzard NE of Blofield
Short-eared Owl at Salthouse
Turtle Dove at Salthouse Heath
Quail reported singing at Muckleburgh Hill
Rose-coloured Starling (probable) flew over campsite at Blakeney
Rose-coloured Starling (possible) distantly on marsh with Starlings at Morston
Osprey flew over Norwich
Rose-coloured Starling at Kelling Water Meadows
Spoonbill, Great White Egret at Cley NWT

MEGA NEWS 
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset
RED-NECKED STINT
Blyth Estuary, NW of Blyth, Northumberland

Friday, 4 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Common Rosefinch male singing at Sidestrand
Red-footed Falcon at Brendan's Marsh, White Stork flew over Hickling Broad NWT
Quail singing at Beetley
Honey Buzzard flew over Norwich
Little Gulls x 5, Spoonbills x 2 at Ken Hill Marsh, Turtle Doves x 6, Spoonbills x 3 at Snettisham Coastal Park
Iceland Gull imm. (possible) flew over Titchwell RSPB
Honey Buzzards x 2 at Thorpe Marshes NWT

MEGA NEWS
RIVER WARBLER
Ham Wall RSPB, Somerset
CALANDRA LARK
Fair Isle, Shetland

Thursday, 3 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Black Redstart at campsite at Waxham Sands
Spoonbills x 3 flew over Sandringham
Marsh Warbler singing, Rose-coloured Starling flew over, Red-backed Shrike male at North Dunes, Winterton
Rose-coloured Starling adult flew in off sea at Scolt Head Island NNR
Turtle Doves x 4, Little Stint, Little Gulls x 10, Spoonbills x 2 at Ken Hill Marsh, Snettisham Coastal Park
Spoonbill at Cley NWT
Honey Buzzard at Hickling Broad NWT
Turtle Doves x 2, Spoonbill at Holme Dunes NWT
Common Crane at Holkham Freshmarsh
Spoonbills x 2 at Titchwell RSPB

MEGA NEWS
LITTLE SWIFT
Flew over St Agnes, Isles of Scilly
CALANDRA LARK
Fair Isle, Shetland
LITTLE CRAKE
Again, singing at Wicken Fen NT, Cambridge
SUBALPINE WARBLER sp.
Norwick, Unst, Shetland

Wednesday, 2 June 2021

NORFOLK BIRD NEWS & MEGAS!

SUMMARY OF TODAY'S BIRD NEWS VIA "RARE BIRD ALERT" 
  For access to full details of daily sightings, please subscribe to one of RBA's Bird News Services   

Icterine Warbler singing at Hungry Hill, North Repps
Common Crane, Great White Egrets x 5 at Holkham Freshmarsh
Spoonbill, Little Stint at Titchwell RSPB
Garganey at Welney WWT
Short-eared Owl at Salthouse & Cley NWT
Turtle Doves x 2, Spoonbills x 6 at Snettisham RSPB
Black Tern, Osprey, Spoonbill at Ken Hill Marsh, Snettisham Coastal Park
Little Gull at Weybourne

MEGA NEWS 
WHITE-TAILED LAPWING
At Stodmarsh NNR briefly (then flew south), Kent
LITTLE SWIFT
St Mary's, Isles of Scilly
CALANDRA LARK
Fair Isle, Shetland
LITTLE CRAKE
Again, singing at Wicken Fen NT, Cambridge

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

Dawn Start, Cley, Salthouse & BLAKENEY POINT!

BLYTH'S REED WARBLER
OR REED WARBLER!
Found by Drew Lyness at Blakeney Point
 
 

I got up incredibly early for me! Arrived in Cley at 5.40am. Watched the male Red-backed Shrike again, sitting on the far hawthorn bush, in the same place I left it last night. It was extremely misty, so no point in taking any pictures. On route here, I had to put my fog lights on!

Went to Gramborough Hill. The early morning dew was very heavy and my trousers got drenched pretty quickly! I had a lovely Reed Bunting sitting on a bramble and there was also a juv. but I was unable to get a picture of that sadly. A Wheatear was near the pool just west of the hill, along with a Ringed Plover. Other birds seen were Linnets, a Blackbird, Meadow Pipits, an Avocet and a Little Egret. No megas in the scrub!

Gramborough Hill at 6am!

Reed Bunting early morning at Gramborough Hill
 
Ringed Plover at Gramborough Hill

Quick stop at Walsey Hills NOA along the bottom path and saw a Blackcap and heard a Sedge Warbler singing. Headed to Coastguards.

BLAKENEY POINT!
I seriously can't remember the last time I walked out here! Its well over a year ago at least! Lockdown stopped me last year. Also, I wanted to know what was down here, as there has been no news coming out of here at all, as several birders have remarked! I knew it would be a difficult walk and it was! Packed up my rucksack and even managed to squeeze in my new super light camp chair for having a long luxurious rest at The Plantation! I felt excited walking down there and it was a glorious day. The mist had cleared and I was the only person walking along to the point at 7.35am. I deliberately avoided the fenced area (for birds) and initially walked along the beach and then cut in half way to Half Way house!
The walk out to Blakeney Point

Greylag Goose at Blakeney Point
 
Oystercatcher at Blakeney Point

Pheasant, female at Blakeney Point
 
Nearly there!
 

Lots of Meadow Pipits, a single Greylag Goose just sitting on the shingle and seemed very happy to be photographed (see pic), a female Pheasant and also a male later – not seen any of these birds on BP before! Lots of Little Terns, Common Terns and Sandwich Terns all along my walk – so stunning to watch and diving for fish in the surf, so beautiful. Sat at the picnic bench outside Half Way house to a short rest and also checked the path that runs to the jetty, immediately south of here. Saw two male Stonechats, one at The Hood and another at Long Hills.

Half Way House, Blakeney Point
 
Sea Thrift, Blakeney Point


Stonechat at The Hood, Blakeney Point
 
Sea Campion at Blakeney Point

Small Copper on shrubby sea blite at The Hood, Blakeney Point
 
Creative surf!
 
Oystercatcher at Blakeney Point
 
 
As I neared The Plantation it felt exciting and so good to be back here. The pink Tamarisk was in full bloom and so many memories of lots of good birds came flooding back from over the years, including my best ever Bluethroat picture, taken by this tamarisk! After checking out all the scrub in The Plantation and finding nothing but a few Linnets, I pitched up my camp chair and sat chilling with a coffee and snack! Lovely! It was such a good move bringing the chair, the height of luxury! I sat here for ages, something had to drop in surely? My vivid imagination saw the 12 Bee-eaters arriving from Yorkshire (last seen flying SE) and all perched up on the dead pine stump – what a scene that would have been! But very sadly not a single bird dropped in there. Walked around The Plantation several times, but nothing. I then realised I needed a kip! Laid down and with head on rucksack and new sunhat over face, I think I did actually fall asleep!


Linnet – one of several in The Plantation, Blakeney Point
 
Meadow Pipit in The Plantation, Blakeney Point
 
The Plantation, Blakeney Point
 
 
After hearing voices, I sat up and to my surprise I could see Ajay and two other birders! Not seen Ajay since he worked at Blakeney Point, so it was nice to catch up. Ryan, one of the rangers told me he had just found a female Red-backed Shrike in 'The Garden' (next to the Lifeboat House). Gathered my stuff up as quick as I could and walked over there. I spent FAR too long on and off throughout the day to try and see the RBS and failed. As far as I know, nobody else saw this either, very frustrating indeed! Lots of Linnets in the garden/lupins, a Pied Wagtail, Reed Bunting, Stonechats, Little Terns and Common Terns overhead. A Marsh Harrier also glided over just east of the Lifeboat House, lots of Skylarks and a Kestrel seen. Another birder then joined me and I then discovered it was Drew Lyness, who posts bird news on Twitter. We waited for the shrike – nothing. Drew then walked off elsewhere. A short while after he left, I headed back to The Plantation – on my way, Drew messaged me on Whats App at 13.57 to say he had "Got an Acro!" I turned around and followed the boardwalk over the dunes to find where Drew was – which was just north west of The Plantation in an area, which regulars will know, but difficult to describe – its a huge shallow like bowl of sueda, surrounded by a mini cliff of dunes for a long stretch, just NE of the end of the boardwalk.

When I joined Drew, the bird in question was not in view, we spent a long time here, tracking it down, which we did eventually on our return to the initial finding place, when I saw it shoot out of a sueda and bombed back in the direction we had just walked! Ok, it was serious now, we needed to see it and photograph it. It was a s*d to pin down! My first picture and proper view of it, was of it sitting at the base of a sueda and then a nano second later, it shot off (see top two headline pictures). I love warblers, but some of them can be incredibly difficult to ID. My initial thoughts were Marsh Warbler. I don't think either of us had thought properly about it being a possible Blyth's at this point. As Drew highlighted, the bill was really much too long for Marsh, which it was indeed. After seeing several but short views, you could clearly see it had a very long bill! We then decided that maybe it was simply a Reed Warbler?! Anyway, we both got all the pictures that were possible and the acro disappeared. Drew left and I stayed a bit longer to re-find it, but couldn't, plus I was now shattered.

BLYTH'S REED WARBLER
OR REED WARBLER!
All thirteen pictures above have only been cropped and lightly sharpened, no other editing


I walked back to the Garden by the Lifeboat House again to look for the Red-backed Shrike, but again no sign. Drew joined me again and we sat by The Plantation and discussed the Acro, whilst a lovely couple were sitting here who I have met a few times before, but can never remember their names, so embarrassing, sorry! They also noted the lack of news coming out of BP, which I don't really understand why it hasn't been –  if a good bird is not in an area/spot where birds are nesting, I really don't why news is not being put out – plus only the hardcore or crazy walk down here, so you will never get hordes of birders unless its a mega! Its a hell walk, even for the youngsters! Its simply nice to just know what birds are around, even if you are at work and can't get there, plus when you finish work, it helps you to make the decision about whether to push yourself to drive out and look for birds, if you know things have dropped in elsewhere.

Drew then left to walk back to Coastguards. I did say bluntly but politely to Drew that I wouldn't join him on the walk back, as I would hold him up! With him being considerably younger than my old self, he would get back twice as quick as me and I'm sure he did! I stayed here a while longer and then AGAIN returned to the garden and again, no shrike! I noted several hares on BP today, which was lovely to see.

The Lifeboat House, Blakeney Point

Hare just south of the Lifeboat House at Blakeney Point
 
South of the The Lifeboat House and Blakeney Harbour
 
The Tamarisk, Blakeney Point
 

I left and started to amble back at 5.30pm. Oh dear, I felt the same fatigue that you feel when you are half way back and I had only just hit the shingle bank LOL! The thought of walking back was enough to make me sit down on the shingle and have tea! After a hot drink and the rest of my now warm egg sandwiches and chocolate (confession) I embraced the walk back at 6pm, along the beach and did the usual singing and talking to myself to pass the time! Even though it was tiring, it was a wonderful walk back in the sunshine whilst watching lots of terns fishing. I couldn't have asked for a better day. Suddenly I realised there was a Little Tern on the beach being fed by a parent bird – so lovely to watch, not seen this for years! It was a wonderful sight to see the triangle shaped roof of the shelter at Coastguards come into view – it was distant and as usual, the 'triangle' never seemed to get any bigger!

My view from my tea rest before I walked back

Little Tern at Blakeney Point
 
Pied Wagtail in the visitor centre car park at Cley NWT
 

Eventually I stumbled back into Coastguards car park. Bedraggled, windswept, exhausted and ready for a shower! Fell into the car and even though I should have gone straight home, I stopped for another look at the Red-backed Shrike opposite the Visitor Centre, but it wasn't on show when I looked. Went to the East Bank car park, to hopefully meet up with Eddie (which I did), to show him my Acro pictures and his first reaction was Blyth's Reed Warbler, but obviously couldn't be 100% from my photos. Left to go home and arrived back late, as in about 9pm I think. I did not have any energy when I got home to write the blog, but HAD to find energy to go through all my Acro shots, select and then cropped and sharpened slightly (only) and then emailed to several elite birders for identification assistance. I sent them so late, that nobody would see them until Wednesday morning at least! Drew also contacted other people too for advice.

Update – Wednesday Evening
Of the few people I had sent emails to, it was a general consensus that it was a possible Blyth's Reed Warbler. Because of location, time, year/weather it probably was..... but on the photos that Drew and I sent, the ID couldn't really be confirmed as to Reed or Blyth's. We needed more detail on the wing/primary projection etc and sadly neither of us had the picture that was required to tick all the boxes! One person I emailed felt it was definitely a Blyth's Reed Warbler. But sadly there was not enough to clinch it from most! I can't believe how much time I have spent on an LBJ this evening! Ha ha!

Huge thanks to all those that took the time to assist us, especially one particular person who went into lots of ID detail and explanation, which I found really helpful and interesting for the next brown Acro I may come across, either by myself or with someone else!!! If I bump into Drew again, I hope he finds a Bee-eater next time – that...... won't cause any ID issues whatsoever!!!