Tuesday, 26 December 2017

North Coast: Divers, Egrets and Kites..

Our great friends Peter and Sue have been staying up on the North Coast for a few days, so we agreed to meet for a walk round and catch-up. They're not the earliest of risers, so Linda and I started the day (at 8.15) at Cley Beach, intending to drift westwards for our get-together at 11.00.

Lots of Brents on the Eye Field, but if the Brant was there, we didn't see it. Good numbers of Red-throated Divers offshore, as well as a couple of Long-tailed Duck. We moved on to Blakeney, enjoying the Wildfowl collection by the harbour car park - and good views of two Merlins (a male and a female) en route.

After coffee at Wells Quay, we parked at the free car park by the gates at Holkham, not having to wait long for Sue and Peter to arrive. Sue quickly picked up the first of a number of Red Kites of the day, while Nuthatches and Marsh Tits flitted around in the canopy. We walked down Lady Anne's Drive, deciding to avoid the beach (more dogs than Crufts!) and look for Great White Egrets on the marshes. After a few minutes spent in each of the two hides we found three - perhaps four - Great Whites, all somewhat distant, unfortunately. Lots of Geese and a few raptors - Marsh Harriers, Kestrels and Buzzards. A brief check of the beach at the western end of the pines added just a female Stonechat to the day's tally, so we returned to the cars and headed west for soup and a drink before saying our farewells.


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