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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

24th July

Bloody typical!

I am back from a relatively relaxing two and a half day stay in Norfolk, visiting my mother in-law. I say relaxing I was up at 4.00am on Sunday and Monday. I wanted to be at Cley NNT Reserve around dawn, hoping for good light and some good waders. Sunday morning looked a bit iffy, though one forecaster had said that the coast should be sunny, though in reality I had to make do with a few sunny intervals, that had petered out by 8.00am. The following day was superb, a shame the birds remained a little distant, but it is great to have the reserve all to yourself, well almost. I saw only a handful of other birders in the 5 hours that I was there on both days.

Right lets get to the birds. The southern movement of waders had began, with more Black-tailed Godwits on the reserve, along with Ruff, Whimbrel, Golden Plover and 60 or so Dunlin. I was hoping for an American sandpiper, as it is the time of year that they begin to filter across the sea. A Pectoral and at least a couple of White-rumped Sands within 100 miles of me gave me some hope. As much as I tried, there was no way that any of the Dunlin could be turned into something of interest. The only sandpipers that I saw were 6 or so Green Sandpiper. The frustrating part, but that is birding is that a White-rump Sandpiper was found at Cley this morning.

Here are a few photos taken over the extended weekend. If you follow the link to my Flickr, you will see more.


The sun breaks the shingle ridge at Cley


I saw the Barn Owl on both mornings, the light not good enough for flight shots.



Marsh Harriers, I had hoped that they would perform closer to the road.


Bearded Tits were very showy on Sunday, but the wind picked up a little on the Monday causing them to keep in cover more.



The Avocets chase absolutely everything



Several pairs of Little Egrets breed in the wood by the road, several family parties were seen to leave just after dawn.


I was surprised to see quite a few very small waders and Shelduck ducklings. The Little-ringed Plover below takes steps to attract a Mallards attention, apparently several chicks have been killed by Mallard ducklings.



Mediterranean Gull at Walcot, I saw others at various locations.


Up to 13 Spoonbills can be seen almost daily feeding at Cley. They fly in around 6.30am.



Sandwich Tern (above), Little Tern (below)



This next batch were taken at Titchwell RSPB Reserve on the long route home.


Ruff, the photo below show how the manage to moult and retain the ability to fly.



Little Ringed Plover juvenile



Black-tailed Godwit (above) and Bar-tailed Godwit (below)


The photo below shows the barred tail and total lack of the vary obvious black and white wing bar and tail of the Black-tailed Godwit.






Common Terns




birdman_euston said...

25 Jul:

On the hottest day of the year (19C at dawn, 25 C by 10:00am), I wasn't expecting to see my first autumn passerine migrant in the Park, until...

Garden Warbler 1 (in just-ripening brambles and birches at NE end of Cricket Pen, area 34 at 09:20).
It was accompanied by a host of the Park's summer residents: Great/Blue/Coal Tit, Blackcap (the Garden Warbler looks comparatively larger and plumper), Chiffchaff (1), Chaffinch and Greenfinch.
The bramble bush in which I found the bird is completely isolated by a metre-wide strip of newly-mown lawn - suitable for the first cut of rough at The Open, perhaps, but in a nature reserve full of hungry birds it smacks of overkill...)

Little Grebe 4 (including an adult feeding two half-grown young under shelter of overhanging weeping-willow in area 2).
I love these little guys - a feisty personality *and* intelligence! Vital traits when you're the smallest waterfowl in the Park.

Black-headed Gull 165 (including one juvenile).

Kestrel 1m (juvenile briefly revisiting its next box, now overflowing with dead branches, in Wetland Pen, area 32 at 07:10).

The last singing, territorial Reed Warbler and Chiffchaff of the summer were both singing within earshot of Longbridge at 07:20.

(No Willow Warblers seen or heard yet - I carefully checked a tit flock of 25 birds at NE corner of Leaf Yard Wood, area 40, for one but no joy.)

(A Puna Teal - from Slimbridge, perhaps? - was feeding with the regular mob of waterfowl in area 36 at 07:30.)

Goldenrod rapidly coming into bloom this week.

birdman_euston said...

Tony, was the juvenile Kestrel that fledged from the Wetland Pen this year male or female? I was sexing by size in my previous post but then again, there was no other kestrel around to compare it with.

Tony Duckett said...

I have not had the chance to see the bird yet. I asked Dave if it favoured any one location and he said it roamed widely.