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Wednesday, 5 October 2022

Rock and Blues at Heathlands!

Just over a week to go until my band 'Synergy' play three sets of rock and blues classics at Heathlands Social Club, in aid of Hemblington Church.

It should be a terrific evening, with plenty of your musical favourites, drinks at club prices and the chance to enjoy the musical talents of five of Norfolk's top musicians!

Tuesday, 4 October 2022

All about the Divers (And an Osprey!)

A run along the North Coast from Titchwell back to Cley was not particularly fruitful - certainly there were no passerines to chase - but there were a few odds and ends worth pointing a camera at!

The various pools at Titchwell held lots of Golden Plover, Ruff and Godwits, as well as a few Snipe, Grey Plovers and Dunlin. A half-hour seawatch added the expected waders, as well as a chunky diver which was 'i/d-d by consensus' as Black-throated.

A stop at Burnham Norton revealed an apparent Snow Goose flying in (distantly!) with Brents, while flocks of Pinkfeet passed over continuously.

Cley was not as productive as we'd hoped: no calidrids on the Serpentine, nor anything much else! However, the sight of a USAF 'Osprey' was unusual, while the sea off the end of the East Bank held half a dozen Red-throated Divers, one or two in pretty sharp plumage still.

Monday, 3 October 2022

Black Redstarts at Norwich Cathedral

Since Linda and I had to pop into Norwich for an hour, we took a walk around the Cathedral Close, where - after a bit of a search - we eventually managed to see four Black Redstarts. Favoured spots seemed to be the Refectory roof and the residences near the Edith Cavell memorial. The birds frequently called and sang, making location just a bit easier!

Sunday, 2 October 2022

Back from Sussex to dip a Rustic Bunting!

Having left Sussex at 4.00am, Linda and I were back home and unpacked by 8.00, so I thought I'd have a dart out to Horsey Corner for the Rustic Bunting (It having been reported by RBA at 7.30)

I was there by 8.30, but sadly the bird hadn't been seen for an hour: the crowded, narrow path wasn't appealing, so I walked back to the Horsey Gap car park and spent an hour checking out the dunes. Sadly, the best bird was a Whinchat, but the pair of Roe Deer and two nearby fauns were nice to see.

Eleventh hour year tick: Black-necked Grebe in Worthing

Our final day in Sussex was partially curtailed by the need to pack everything ready to leave on Sunday morning and dropping Mum-in-Law at her granddaughter's house in Worthing. We had a last look at the sea (at Climping Beach) which was a little disappointing (dozens of off-lead dogs and a somewhat derelict 'feel'), but the sea did produce distant views of a small, 'bouncy' skua - I'm pretty sure it was a Long-tailed, although that would be quite late for West Sussex. Other birds included a Mediterranean Gull and a Brent Goose.

On the way to drop Mary off in Worthing, we made a brief stop for me to catch up with the just-reported Black-necked Grebe at Brooklands Park. Despite the numerous walkers. and thanks to a trio of elderly birders, I found the dapper little visitor tucked under the bank. Just as I was about to try for a photo (in the increasing gloaming - ISO 3200) a Cormorant chased the Grebe to the far end of the lake, allowing a single distant shot before I had to leave

 A great way to finish our six days in Sussex...

Friday, 30 September 2022

More birds around East Sussex

Just a few more photos taken around Gallop's Farm and Cissbury Ring. The pair of Red Kites were pushed off their perch by a Buzzard, which surprised me, given that they are larger birds.

Thursday, 29 September 2022

220 species before the end of September... but pipped at the post!

I finally connected with Rock Pipit for the list - two at Shoreham Fort. Sadly ol' 'Wingsearch' himself (Barry Madden) played his trump card with a trip to Cornwall, adding lots of tubenoses from the cliffs. (Touch reminiscent of a certain LGRE!)

Well done Barry: a thoroughly deserved result: but! There's three months to go yet: I'm hoping to retake the lead with some decent woodland migrants and winter seawatching!

Findon: our cottage and surrounding area

This has been our third stay at Gallop's Farm in East Sussex, spending a few days with Linda's Mum: as previously, the cottage was delightful: clean, warm, modern and comfortable, with Red Kites and Buzzards virtually ever-present. Nearby are some terrific wildlife habitats: Cissbury Ring, Pulborough Brooks and the various seafronts at Shoreham, Worthing and Climping.

The farm has resident Barn and Little Owls, as well as some charming pigs that are more than happy to dispose of kitchen scraps!