Serin,Isla's middle name...

Serin,Isla's middle name...

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Pinky sort of velvety day

Today was the day when I went on my eagerly awaited trip to North Norfolk with the Boozybirders,led by Birding Guru Howard Vaughan of Rainham Marsh fame.I woke up at 4.45am and made the short journey to Brentwood to meet up with Graham Thomlinson(father of Hornchurch legend Andy and another keen lover of ze birds),I was very tired as nipper decided to keep me up all night and I only got about 3 hours sleep,little darling.We made the way up to Thornham Harbour,stopping briefly for a sausage sandwich in sleepy Hunstanton and arrived about 7.45am.As we got out of the car,we were informed that we had just missed the Northern Harrier by about 1 minute,looks like the sausage sandwich was responsible for us dipping on this bird,but dipping on birds is something the boozybirders don't take too kindly to so we soldiered on in the drizzle to glorious titchwell,one of Norfolks premier birding reserves.Once at Titchwell the weather picked up,or at least stopped raining,almost as soon as we got there the bird fest started with Whooper Swan,Barn Owl,Water Rail,Redpoll all seen in the first 5 minutes past the visitor centre.We carried on up the walkway towards the beech scanning the vast areas of the reserve picking up Hen Harrier,Marsh Harrier,skylarks,waders,geese in fact it was more a case of what didn't turn up,there were 3 drake goldeneye seen with at least 2 females,waders included spotted redshank,ruff,godwits,dunlin,redshank, turnstone and oystercatchers.We carried on and were rewarded with Twite,feeding with skylarks,meadow pipit and water pipit all cracking birds.We then headed to the beach in the now glorious sunshine.

We stayed on the beach for around an hour and was rewarded with cracking views of Common Scoter,I didn't count them but there must of been 5-600 maybe more with the odd Velvet scorer thrown in for good measure with Eider,slavonian grebe,goldeneye,red brested mergansers all seen on the sea,10 Snow buntings was another cracking addition as were sanderling which got to within about 10 feet of us.We then walked back slowly towards the cars,stopping every now and then to scan on the off chance of seeing the Northern Harrier but with no luck,we decided to go to Cley,another big gun on the North Norfolk Coast so it looked like we had dipped on the harrier,but after a quarter of a mile of the journey to cley competed (about 2% of the journey),we was flagged down by a happy Howard who informed us they had the bird,so I jumped out the car and was straight on it,only dissapointment was that not everyone got to see it,so let's hope it sticks around,anyway seems like a perfect opportunity to go back soon!!!l
On our way to Cley we encountered 3 more Barn Owls,2 in a field and one a mile or so further on,will post a picture of one of the barns when it is sent to me by Graham(if you are reading this,can I have a copy lol)
We pulled up at Cley and made the shortish walk to the east Bank,where the American Wigeon has been seen,we got it as soon as we arrived,a lovely bird and s lifer for me,also at cley in our brief stay was a whooper swan,plenty of wildfowl and a female sparrowhawk.By now it was about 2pm so we headed to Burnham to try to catch up with the Rough legged buzzards of which are wintering in the area,we arrived,parked up and got very muddy walking to the viewpoint,we had views of a pale common buzzard and then was told where one of the rough legs was which was grately appreciated.As soon as we got to our viewpoint we were given some info that two birds had been seen on the dunes,we got on them straight away.By about 3pm the light was starting to fade but the spirits wasn't,thousands upon thousands of pink footed geese were all around us along with the Brent and waders and we continued watching the rough legs,geese and harriers right until it was time to leave,even on the walk back we had 4 waxwings which was a cracking way to end the trip,a nice bit of fish and Chips in Swaffham finished it off nicely on the way home,a cracking trip and great company,off to bonnetts early in the morning,I know it won't compare but I will have a go!!!!
Pictures of some pinkies,albeit on my crappy i phone
Oh and it looks like i made the right decision to go Norfolk instead of Football away to Carshalton in what was by all accounts a pathetic game of football in the 0-0 draw,which probably actually favoured us being the away side and above them in the league.COME ON YOU URCHINS

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