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Thursday 29 November 2012


Here's a sketch I made last night, based on further discussion with MSR: he suggested the tail was longer than I had originally drawn and, on reflection I concur! We won't be submitting this record, but should someone see anything similar in the next couple of days, we'd love to hear about it. (BTW: yes: I just noticed I got the date wrong.)

Wednesday 28 November 2012

Purple day!!!!

Wow! Words can't begin....
A day out with Martin Read on the North Coast began with terrific views of the Sacred Ibis at Salthouse: yes, we know, but a bird so ugly it has to be seen!
Moving to the beach produced Little Auk, Puffin, Red-throated Diver, Merlin and - best of all - a really confiding Purple Sandpiper with the carpark Turnstone flock!
After a latte at the centre, we had a short seawatch at the coastguards, adding Kittiwake, Gannet and more auks ( all of them!) to the day list.
We decided to finish the day at Sheringfham, finding the shelter absolutely deserted. We soon added Bonxie and Arctic Skua, as well as Long-tailed Duck, Scoter and Eider, before the bird of the day flew eastwards halfway out. Since this is my blog, I don't have to worry about negative comments: it was a Fea's Petrel! Seen well by both of us through the scope: sensational!

Tuesday 27 November 2012

Amazing light....

A two minute 'window of opportunity' in between squally showers at Strumpshaw Fen Hide this morning: a complete bow in a dark sky with curiously orange-yellow oblique sunlight: it made the Teal positively glow!
Nothing much else to report: Nuthatch with the roving tit flock and still Waxwings along the Sandy Wall....

Monday 26 November 2012

Buckenham again!

A brief sunny interval between the showers persuaded me to take a seven-mile walk around the patch. Just a Water Rail at Strumpshaw, but Treecreeper, Green Woodpecker, 12 Bean Geese, 300+ Pinkfeet and the Peregrines at Buckenham.

Sunday 25 November 2012

A welcome visitor!

Despite the ferocious winds and heavy rain this morning, we had a lovely young Hedgehog under the feeders. I believe this may not be a good thing, given the late date and his youth......

Friday 23 November 2012

'Fare enough?

Well: not really! But the lone apple-ivorous Fieldfare at Strumpshaw was all that was on offer today!
I carried on to Buckenham, 'enjoying' distant views of a couple of Peregrines and a sentinel Kestrel.
Back home to restring my Strat for tonight's gig at Heathlands (Blofield Heath!) Come along: it'll be worth a couple of quid!

Thursday 22 November 2012

Bean and gone!

I checked Bullacebush Lane early this morning, in the hope of catching the Beans leaving the potato field: no sign... At about 8.30, a huge flock of Pinkfeet came in to feed: about 500 or so! Blofield Heath is the new Buckenham Marshes!

A move to Strumpshaw produced good views of a couple of Waxwings and a few Siskins, while at Buckenham a Peregrine was chasing the Golden Plover flock! A few Little Egrets shivered among the Wigeons!

Wednesday 21 November 2012

Bean two days!

The flock of Bean Geese were back at Bullacebush Lane this afternoon: they were feeding at the top of the potato field at 3.45. Terrific to have these on the home patch!

Here's a couple more pictures....

Tuesday 20 November 2012

East Norfolk goose-fest!

A somewhat damp and murky start to the morning precluded a long walk at Strumpshaw: I was there long enough to enjoy close views of Otter & Bittern, before electing to move eastwards.

The fields around Waxham held vast numbers of Pinkfeet, while a sea-watch produced Scoter, Velvet Scoter, Eider & Red-throated Diver: on the beach at Walcott a Sanderling posed for the camera...

Biggest surprise was finding a feeding flock of Bean Geese by the side of Bullace Bush Lane, Blofield Heath!

Monday 19 November 2012

Busy weekend

This weekend was somewhat hectic, with a Serious Risk gig on Friday and a party on Saturday. Still, somewhat hoarse and hungover, I went for an eight mile walk around Hemblington and saw.... very little!

Despite a beautiful clear and sunny sky, the only birds of note were two big (50+) flocks of Skylarks and another of Starlings.

Friday 16 November 2012

New garden tick!

Exceptional! Just outside my office window is a standard Bay Tree: a movement among the leaves caused me to glance up: I was amazed to find myself looking at a Firecrest! Stunning!

Thursday 15 November 2012


Brian T and I enjoyed fabulous views of a large group of Bearded Tits at Strumpshaw this morning: they even fed on the path right in front of us!!
Nothing much else to report, despite an eight-mile trudge around Hassingham / Buckenham. I did have reasonable views of a Water Pipit at Fen Hide, but too furtive for a photo!

First of the Autumn for our garden!

I expect these Redwings (and accompanying Blackbirds & Woodies) will have stripped our cotoneaster before any Waxwings find it! A biggish flock of Siskins passed through without stopping at 8.15.....

Wednesday 14 November 2012

Golden morning?

I looked up from my PC just now to see a large flock (200+) of Golden Plovers flying westwards: just time for a quick snap!

A walk around the Fen yesterday was extraordinarily unproductive: I haven't seen so few birds there for ages....