Tuesday, 18 June 2013

18-6-13, part 1

Firstly it is a quick apology for not putting out any posts recently as since returning from Norfolk I have been unable to get internet access until now.
Secondly it is with deep regret that I announce the passing of Jess my faithful dog.  Those who knew me and met me birding would know or have seen Jess.  In February she was diagnosed with an inoperable tumor and she finally passed away on Thursday May 23rd at 12 years of age.
On to the birding and Norfolk was highly enjoyable if not windy. 
Monday 20th May.
Paxton Pits.  The target was obviously Nightingale and a few sightings were ideal.
Weeting Heath.  Another obvious target, Stone Curlew and crippling views were had.
Lakenheath.  I had planned to have the rest of the day here as I was booked into a travel lodge just down the road and the obvious bonus was a stunning adult male Red-footed Falcon, one of the most impressive birds I have ever seen in my short and dull birding life.  I also got cracking views of Hobby and Common Crane.
Tuesday 21st May.
Choseley Barns.  I did not plan to stop here but my satnav took me past this place and on the way through I had Corn Bunting on the wires.
Titchwell RSPB.  Not everyone's favourite place but it is no doubt one of mine.  Highlights included summer plumaged Grey Plovers, great views of Marsh Harriers, and a Little Tern.
Holme Dunes NNT. One bird missing from my UK list (I have seen one in Spain) is a Red-backed Shrike and one had been present here for a while.  I was staying in Hunstanton for the next three nights so I spent the evening here.  I missed the bird by seconds at one point but enjoyed Tree Pipits, Avocets and Wheatears.    
Wednesday 22nd May.
Holme Dunes NNT.  I thought an early morning visit might do the trick after last nights failure.  Highlights were a Cuckoo, a fly through Turtle Dove and more Tree Pipits.
Doking.  Whilst on my way to my next venue I passed through the small village of Doking and a Barn Owl was perched on a road sign.  Nice.
Great Ryburgh.  This is a great site for Honey Buzzards although none had been reported as of yet I decided it was still worth a visit especially as Cley was my next destination and not open till 10.00!!!!!!! (for those of you doing the maths I was at Holme at about 05.00, nutter).  No Honey Buzzards for me.
Cley Marshes NNR.  This site has never really pressed my buttons, don't know why.  Real ale or lager, real ale.  Tea or coffee, tea.  Titchwell or Cley, Titchwell.  Sorry.  However Cley made sense today, in fact it was bloody superb.  Highlights were Avocets + chicks, stonking views of the following - Marsh Harriers, Common Sandpipers and Wood Sandpiper as well as Little and Sandwich Terns, a Little Gull and a few Bearded Tits.
Hunstanton.  Only one bird to target here, Fulmar, and two gave great views.
Thursday  23rd May.
The forecast for the next few days was grim so I made a decision, enjoy the best of the weather this morning at Titchwell and leave when the weather turned rubbish, cut my losses and go home.  Todays highlights was a Spoonbill and a Barn owl hunting over Thornham marsh but with the weather turning by mid morning I headed home.
Wolferton.  A quick look for a plastic tick in the shape of a Golden Pheasant but failed.
That was my Norfolk trip over and done with and it was when I got home that I learned my dog had passed away in the last 30 mins.  Gutted and I will never forget her.
R.I.P Jess
I will love you and miss you always.  

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