Blustery day at North Point Pools, Wells!
THURSDAY 20th MAY
I spent many, many hours editing photos for blog posts yesterday (Wednesday) and this resulted in going to bed far too late last night/this morning! At least they are all now done and April and May is now up-to-date. This also resulted in me waking up to discover that the bird party was well and truly over! Not that I would have been lucky enough to jam in on an Alpine Swift or a Collared Pratincole, but the chances of seeing either from my slumber were unlikely!!!
Sunshine for a short period at North Point Pools, Wells
Plan B: Drove to North Point Pools at Wells in hope that the Collared Pratincole needed a little rest on route west? Maybe?! I seem to pick the most terrible weather to go birding in sometimes! Pouring with rain on and off all afternoon and evening. At North Point Pools, two other birders had had the same idea and were hoping for the Collared Pratincole to pass through too – they had just returned to their car, as the rain was now heavier. Determined, I walked down the track with scope and camera ready. Dismal weather was an understatement and I had not put enough layers on either. Bird of the afternoon was a lovely Yellow Wagtail seen feeding on the mud for a short while. Of note were lots of Avocets plus a few chicks, Lapwings and fluffy babies, Mallard and several Redshanks. Fed up with the rain, I returned to my car.
Cold and Raining at Garden Drove, Warham Greens
Walked along the Garden Drove track at Warham and apart from a Blackbird and a Chaffinch, nothing of note was seen. Lots of Wood Pigeons, Pheasants and Hares in the pig fields. Returned to North Point Pools and the weather improved for a short while with the sun coming out! Little Ringed Plover seen fairly close in addition to the birds I saw earlier. No other birders here at all and no Pratincole either! Lots of hirundines skimming over the pools: Swifts, Swallows, House Martins and Sand Martins. News came through that Mark B. had found a Red-rumped Swallow at Titchwell RSPB, but it was only seen briefly and could not be relocated sadly.
Hide One at Holme Marsh Reserve NWT
View from Hide One at Holme Marsh Reserve NWT
Holme Marsh Reserve NWT
On hearing that my late mother's favourite birding spot was now open (from 17th May), I headed west to Holme Marsh Reserve NWT, to end my short birding trip. It felt quite weird being back here, as the reserve has been completely closed since March 2020. In an odd way, I felt like I was trespassing as I walked along the path to hide one! I fully expected my mother's cushions that she provided for the three hides to have been discarded because of the pandemic, but I was very surprised to find them still there, some in a dustbin bag with a dustpan and brush on top, some on the floor and some on the seats, along with lots of debris and bird poo on the floor of all three hides – I don't know what has been roosting in hide number three, but it must be something big! There is a bottle of sanitizer in each hide, but no notices about the rules, eg wearing a mask, how many people etc – maybe some laminate notices will be going up inside the hides this week, hopefully anyway. I didn't see very much, too late in the day and raining. Heard a Cuckoo and a Sedge Warbler. Saw a Coot, Mute Swan, lots of hirundines and that was about it, but lovely to be back here. Just got back to my car in time, before another downpour!