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Tuesday, 13 April 2021

CleySpy, Glandford, Salthouse, Friary Hills & Wells!

Chiffchaff at Friary Hills NT, Blakeney


Last week I had a blood test to find out the reason why I have been feeling so tired. I was fully expecting it to be fine and then it would confirm that I possibly have long Covid fatigue. The results showed that I was low in iron, so that is presumably why I have been feeling so tired. Vivien thought it was funny to send me a text, advising her vegetarian sister that I needed liver and spinach! Its probably the lack of chocolate to be honest!!!

Yesterday I spent a lot of the day, putting all my bird feeders back. A few weeks ago, I had another rat problem in the garden and had to take all the feeders down until I had sorted it. Its was truly awful seeing my regular birds arriving in the garden to find nothing to eat, but I had no choice. No rats now – for the moment anyway! So lovely to have my birds returning to the feeders again.

Today I finally got out birding for a while. On route to CleySpy, I stopped at my favourite car washing place, which is along the A148 by the Four Winds Cafe just before the B1454 – took one look at the queue and carried on! Arrived at CleySpy to sort out a couple of issues. My Swarovski VPA Variable Phone Adapter has not been working for months and this was the first chance I've had, to take it back for Andrew to look at, who told me the lock mechanism is not working and he would return it to Swarovski to be looked at. My second issue was my tripod head, which will not tighten and I had no idea that a screw/part was missing! CleySpy could have ordered it for me, but Andrew advised that I would receive it much quicker if I phoned and ordered it myself– he gave me the part number and name which was R1036.18 for MVH 500AH on: which I ordered in the car park before I left. So annoying when the postage is nearly the same price as the part – oh well! Hopefully I will receive that in the next couple of days. It was lovely to see Suzanne and Simon again. Andrew told me that the new Swarovski NL Pure 8x32 binoculars are incredible – they hit the shop some time in May! They come in the usual green or a new orange colour!!! Each to their own, I don't do orange!

Glandford Ford
Periwinkle at Friary Hills NT, Blakeney
Looking east from Gramborough Hill, Salthouse


Stopped by the ford at Glandford for a while. Stood on the bridge and watched the water rippling over stones. No Grey Wagtails seen or Water Voles, but a male Blackcap was in a tree. Nothing else here of note. Went to Salthouse and up Cross Street to find my own Ring Ouzels in the horse paddocks, but failed. Only found a Magpie and a Robin here. Went to Beach Road and walked to Gramborough Hill at Salthouse – bumped into John F. here. Lots of Sand Martins, one male Stonechat on a fence post, a Wren and Meadow Pipits and that was about it.

Chiffchaff at Friary Hills NT, Blakeney
Blackcap at Friary Hills NT, Blakeney
Chiffchaff at Friary Hills NT, Blakeney


Went to Friary Hills NT at Blakeney. I have not been here for a very long time. Its a beautiful place and no dogs are allowed there – not that it stops some people! Two ladies walking along at Friary Hills were carrying a dog – I couldn't be bothered to confront them to be honest, normally I would do. Its one of the few places in Norfolk where you are supposed to be able to walk with no dogs present, which is a treat to be honest. I was so glad I came here, as I got some lovely pictures of a very obliging Chiffchaff in the hawthorn hedge just by the gate. There was a nice selection of birds here, including Blue Tit, Great Tit, a couple of Greenfinches, Goldfinches, Blackbird, and 2 Song Thrushes. I walked all around the hills at the top and sat on the seat on the hill overlooking Blakeney Freshes. Marsh Harrier seen, along with Greylag Geese, Mute Swans and Lapwings. It was a glorious day and everything looked so pretty, including some periwinkles growing near the big gully by the stone wall. I meandered back along the lower path to my car and had a very rare experience! 6, yes 6 Song Thrushes were all collecting food on the marsh, just yards from the entrance gate by the pool! I couldn't believe it – I can't ever recall seeing 6 Song Thrushes in one view, wow! Also a Blackbird, Linnets, 2 Stock Doves, Lapwings and Starlings by the pool. News came on the pager of a Grey Phalarope at North Point Pools, Wells! Time to go!

North Point Pools, Wells

Arrived at North Point Pools, Wells at about 7.05pm. Nobody here! It didn't take me long to find the Grey Phalarope, but it was a dot in the distance on the east side of the pools. No SLR camera would have got a picture of that, but phone scoping would have worked, if my mine was working! Lovely to watch the Phalarope whizzing about, even though it was distant and thank you to whoever found it this evening. A Spoonbill was on the west side of the pools. Other birds seen: Teal, Mallards, Shovelers, Shelduck, Avocets, Black-headed Gulls, Black-tailed Godwits, Snipe x 2, Lapwings, Cormorant, Oystercatchers, Ruff x 1, Moorhen, Redshanks, Egyptian Goose flying over, Greylag Geese, Marsh Harrier and Heron. Lots of Hares in the late evening sun and a beautiful sunset over the pools. Had a coffee and headed home.

I found a scope lens cap (black, flexible rubber – no brand name) in the grass by the fence at North Point Pools, if anyone has lost one?!  Update: found the owner!

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