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Day 1 (Sunday, 3rd October)

First landfall after much deliberation over the birds around the country wasnít too far from home. A juvenile Woodchat Shrike had been around the Croft at Hartlepool for a day or two, so an extra nightís sleep at home resulted in arriving here well after first light. No other birders were around Ė always a good thing Ė and no sooner had I walked through the open gate of the Croft, than a spuggy like bird flew up from the ground to mid height in a straggly buddleia. This was the first of two encounters, the second being also non-shrike like, semi-hiding half way up another bush in the gardens. Another few birders appeared during the next half an hour, but had to wait until I had left the scene to score with their own views.

Woodchat Shrike
Woodchat Shrike


 

Flamborough

Tree Sparrow

The view from the car to "the bush". Exciting!

Tree Sparrow

Another relatively short jaunt found Flamborough Head. The weather had deteriorated swiftly after leaving Hartlepool, with a strong southerly wind bringing in plenty of rain. I did make a short detour via Filey Country Park on the way, where a Wryneck had been reported, but decided against the venture due to poor weather. The quarry at Flamborough was a juvenile/female Rustic Bunting, a species I had seen only once before many years ago. It had been seen again early morning, with an iffy second sighting not long before I arrived at the scene of the crime. Despite the report being from a stubble field, the actual sightings were from a single bush in the field. Busy flocks of mixed House and (occasional) Tree Sparrows provided some entertainment during the wet vigil, but the only reward was an eventual Whinchat (and hiding Magpie) on the bush.

Simmond's Scrape

Teal

Simmond's Scrape from the Daukes Hide

Eurasian Teal

The intermission of the day was a long drive through poor weather to the North Norfolk coast, and Cley in particular. Despite having seen one or two before, a Red-necked Phalarope on Simmondís Scrape was worth the drive. It had been late morning when the last report appeared, but the bird was indeed at the rear of the lagoon when I scanned from the hide, and was thusly watched for about an hour and a half until the light began to fade. There were other birds of interest, the main being a regular female Marsh Harrier quartering the reed beds, and a pair of Spoonbills in flight teetering over whether or not to land on a distant lagoon. A Kestrel zipped in front of the hide to the spot where a female Wheatear had been feeding, but it looked as if the latter had escaped with its life when an empty-taloned falcon departed the scene.
 

Home

Paintings gallery

Video clips

Images

DVD

Contact

Site map

Links

Content

Introduction

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Text only