Sunday, 27 October 2013

Alright Jack

Well I have been birding this weekend but its been very quiet. Although I did manage a patch tick today in the form of finally a JACK SNIPE. I wandered through the stubble field on the walk home when I flushed it and a COMMON SNIPE.
A sea watch produced a few Gannets and 60-70 Common Scoter.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Thats It

Well it has been a brilliant 3 months but all good things must come to an end, back to work tomorrow, I don't no what to expect and am a tad nervous, I've only worked for myself and 1 other in 15 years, start of a new era and a new challenge. I hate challenges I prefer life easy ;-).
Hopefully Rachel will have moved here by mid November too.
Anyway been out this morning in the drizzle and everywhere was really quiet, the only half decent birds were 3 Brown headed Blackcaps in the churchyard. On the sea just flocks of Common Scoter.
So back home prepare for tomorrow and clean my optics ready to put away for the season, not really Im sure ill be out and about at weekends at least.
Thanks to all my blog readers it will more than likely go quiet from here on in lets just hope ill have something to blog at the weekend.

Sunday, 20 October 2013


Ok first of all info back from the GBBGull.

CR-Code Black ring with white code: JY013 LBM;RBNW(JY013)
Ringing Centre Copenhagen (Denmark) Ring number 3M1013
Species Great Black-backed Gull  Larus marinus
Sex Unknown Age Pullus

28.06 2012
Græsholm SW, Hirsholmene, Frederikshavn, Nordjylland, Denmark
57°29'25"N 010°36'34"E
Haupt, Matthias
Pedersen, Kjeld Tommy
15.10 2013
Southwold harbour, Suffolk, Great Britain
52°19'02"N 001°39'57"E
Shaw, Craig

Ok so down to the nitty gritty, today was a little eventful, stayed on the patch all day, started with FIRECREST in the disused railway. Then another in the fields behind the church. A seawatch was fairly uneventful but 80+starlings flew south at sea passerines came in of the sea probably pipits and a LAPLAND BUNTING came in off doing 3 circuits of the site before landing in the field that's all 3 winter birds self found on patch now. (Shorelark, Snow bunting and Lapland Bunting) Woohoo..
COMMON SCOTER numbers are now building so ill be checking for any special ones..

Saturday, 19 October 2013


Just a quick updated, Rach went home this afternoon so that gave me a chance to twitch a PACIFIC GOLDEN PLOVER. Watched for 10 minuets before flying off and not found again, although im sure it was still in the flock somewhere just viewing was tricky.
A Curlew Sandpiper and 16 Med Gulls with many waders.

Friday, 18 October 2013

Quieter today sort off.

Well Rach is here and it was her interview this morning so that gave me the opportunity to cover the patch. It was very quiet except for three SHORELARKS that were still present.

After lunch Rach n I did a circular walk covering Corton Wood where we had excellent views of wintering FIRECREST. Then it very quiet until we had 4 COMMON REDPOLL over the New Sewage works. On the return back home the SHORELARKS were still present.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Easy ;-)

Well what an excellent day, I wasn't really expecting much. Rach was on her way to visit so I never got out early just spent a few hours cleaning up and then and hour in the Gym. After my shower I still had a bit of time before she arrived so nipped out onto the patch. The guys were finding Firecrests everywhere then a couple of Yellow browed so there was some movement. So anyway I started at Radar Lodge but it was extremely quiet. the guys was using a rifle  so that put pay to any birds being there.  Next was the disused railway again very very quite so moved the the churchyard and surrounding fields. I could here a YELLOW BROWED WARBLER (and it was definatly a YBW and unfortunately not Pallas) coming from my right so I walked the whole of the caravan park to try find it but I just couldn't find it and it had stopped calling. A few chiffchaff was it really.
So I headed for the old Sewage works but it was quiet until I walked the stubble. Getting to the end of the Stubble I heard the call of the SHORELARK  I thought they were flying over but they weren't they were only sat on the ground. Initially picking up just 1 then 3 came into view amazing, id never found SHORELARK and they were crackers !!!!

Rach arrived with the dogs so after her cuppa we had a walk along the beach to North Denes, taking the top road until we saw birders below so headed for them. They had heard a PALLAS WARBLER but not seen it yet, they had been there a good hour and not seen it the poor sods. Within about 10 minutes I had picked the bird up and luckily managed to get everyone on it. phew.
We carried on back home picking up 2 cracking SNOW BUNTINGS on the beach id have got some super shots had I took my camera and scope.. doh. ah well.  So the day had been superb and I didn't really have to try very hard, I wish everyday was like this, oh hold on it is  ;-) ....

forgot to mention the vast numbers of Ladybirds in Corton Dis Railway. Many 2 Spot Ladybird of the Melanic form and Harlequin Ladybirds too.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Rough out there!!

Started again at Radar Lodge and as I walked along the road I flushed another GREAT GREY SHRIKE although it likely it was yesterdays bird. I then got to the compound and spotted the Great Grey sat on the fence then I had to double take just a few posts down a second!!!! There were 2 yesterday so guess its the same ones. One flew west when I approached the other just moved further down the fence, it showed better than normal for a time.

After my fill I checked the rest of the patch a couple of BRAMBLING was it so headed for Southwell for the Caspian Gull that had been around for a while now. People told me it came to chips so I brought the said box of chips £1.60s worth and proceeded to chuck them to the 40 or so gulls but no bloody Caspian. A ringed Greater black backed gull and Herring gull was it.

Great Black Backed Gull

Herring Gull

I then went back to the van to compose myself when a massive group of corvids rose into the sky, I knew something must have spooked em, Bingo fairly high a ROUGH LEGGED BUZZARD slowly drifted West, super views though. I gave up looking for the gull and came home.

Herring Gull

Quick update on rings.
Well fast response from gull rings from yesterday. The herring gull was ring in Suffolk at Orfordness as a Pullus.
The GBBG I haven't had back yet but I do know it was ringed in Norway wow!!!

Monday, 14 October 2013

Did i say i love East Anglia ;-)

Well Stated off yet again at Radar Lodge and damn glad I did, I only went and found another GREAT GREY SHRIKE, then there was 2 in the same area when my bird flew slightly south.

After the bird disappeared I picked young Jake up as a RED FLANKED BLUETAIL had been found at Happisburgh so we went to find that. It showed poorly in deep cover the whole time we were there but I still managed a couple of record shots. Another late PIED FLY here too.

Jake went off to Uni and I continued onto Winterton on sea for a cracking PALLAS WARBLER again didn't show that well but did show more often than the Bluetail.
A flock of 80 Mealy Redpolls and an Arctic had been reported a mile away so of I went on the long trudge, a RICHARDS PIPIT flew over seems it was picked up flying over Waxham and then located on the deck at Horsey which was good. A SHORT-EARED OWL showed well which was a nice surprise and then a SNOW BUNTING flew over too. Couldn't find any Redpoll on site unfortunately so headed back to the patch and couldn't find the Siberian Chiffchaff James found this morning, still didn't ruin what was a great day.

Forgot to mention the Male Common Redstart and Lesser Whitethroat at Winterton today..

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Much quieter

Yes as the title says it was very quiet today due to heavy rain and winds, although there had been an influx of WOODCOCKS to the area. 2 At Corton disused railway, 1 on Radar Lodge road and 1 flew over the road at Corton Church.
On next best bird was a very late PIED FLYCATCHER, I double checked it was a Pied and nothing rarer. Then it went down hill from there very hard work all day. I then got a call from Rob he had pinned down the LAPLAND BUNTING in the Stubble field behind Corton Old Sewage works and as I missed this yesterday I though I best go get it today, although I did cover this field twice today, pot luck I guess. Yes I did see it and got good views through scope. The rain set in again time to call It a day.

Saturday, 12 October 2013

Awesome Day!!!

7-30 I was out the door this morning but there were birders all over my patch looking for yesterdays Little Bunting n stuff, so I moved onto the very edge of my patch Radar Lodge, straight away there were Redwings all over then a Fieldfare flew over then I flushed 2 Ring Ouzel, bingo! Further along the road I then flushed a Snow Bunting shame it flew off normally they would drop back down again.
So after this I headed back to the churchyard field more Thrush's everywhere but as birders had already gone through the area it was pretty quiet. I did see a Redpoll that flew into a tree looked bigish but couldn't find it again, apparently I found out later it was a Mealy Redpoll. Ah well there will be others. Then I Checked out the disused railway here another 2 Ring Ouzel, Thrush's, Chiffchaffs and Goldcrest.  By now Leach's Petrels were being report all along the coast so I felt it was a good idea to get it on the patch list, I waited a good while and was starting to panic, I wanted to get back to looking for passerines, eventually I managed to find a Leach's Petrel passing North, it was a big relief. Other birds were mainly wildfowl and Gannets. Had my best views of 2 very close Porpoise from here showing there heads and everything, just great.
I then headed back towards the disused railway where I heard the familiar call of the Yellow Browed Warbler, I got very excited but had to be doubly sure it wasn't someone playing a tape (again). Brilliantly for me it wasn't and the Yellow Browed Warbler called and showed well as I followed it the length of the old railway. After it had gone I found yet another Ring Ouzel  with lots of other Thrush's and a few Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs.
I was then due to go see a Great Grey Shrike that had turned up a mile down the road but it flew before  could get back to my van darn it ;-).
So on I went back to Corton old sewage works it seemed to be getting quiet now.
Moved back to the Radar road where I stopped for another seawatch now picking up a Bonxie, 2 Sooty Shearwaters , 7 Little Gull and more wildfowl. 1 Pinkfooted Goose flew over.
Then I turned around put my bins up in the Radar Compound hmm that looks very grey what the hell, got me scope on it BINGO Great Grey Shrike, another massive relief and what a patch tick.
I moved round the compound for a better look.

Great grey Shrike


After making sure others got to see my bird I moved back round for another seawatch, again success as I picked up more patch ticks, Wigeon, Goldeneye, Pintail, Eider, Red breasted Mergansers x3 another 8 Little Gull and 2 Drake Velvet Scoters, very rare in Suffolk.
I Finished off covering most of the patch again and then looking through the stubble for the Lapland bunting that other birders found earlier in the day so I only missed the Lapland bunting all day. Just an incredible day!!!! I recon tomorrow could be just as good. I Want Pallas's Warbler now..

Friday, 11 October 2013

Tough going. Almost comes good.

So started trying to do a seawatch off Corton this morning, blowing a hooley so viewing wasn't great from here. 6 Drake Eider 2+4 came past, 4 Manxies together scarce of here and then usual stuff Arctic Skua, Brent Geese, Gannets Wigeon, Teal etc. James then tweeted to say viewing was better from Gunton Cliffs so headed for there and picked up a  Sooty Shearwater brilliant, a Bonxie and then James picked up a Leach's Petrel, could I get on it could I buggery. Red Throated Divers, Common scoter a female Eider, Gannets and a few Auks passed. After this the rain came in and visibility turned to pish so decided id go find something on the patch. It wasn't going to be easy in heavy rain but I was just hoping id get lucky but I didn't. Few Thrushs about including a single Fieldfare, my first of the autumn. Time for lunch try sea watching again once the rain clears, theres Leach's everywhere..

Went out after lunch the visibility at sea was still very poor so I nipped back to the patch for an hour but didn't pick up anything new. So Went back to do a seawatch from Gunton Cliffs and was joined by James 1 Juv Long-tailed Skua 3 Arctic Skuas and 35 Brents was the pick of the bunch it was very quiet this afternoon.
Once again I headed back to the patch dejected to say the least had another good wander around but nothing. So I decided id have a trawl along the cliff and the Stubble. I kicked up some Skylarks, Meadow pipits then a bloody small bunting. Bingo It could only be a Little Bunting. So I managed to flush it once more yup a small bunting but as I hadn't taken my scope I couldnt fully get the id on the ground. So I put news out and James came out and we flushed it another couple of times, James seemed happy it was a bunting but wont let me have it as we never saw it properly on the ground and it never called, we watched it fly into one of the willows but when the boys turned up we couldn't find it again, maybe tomorrow.

Can I count it please ;-)

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Bit Windy..

Well It was blowing a hooey and pouring down with rain so it was a late start 9am but a trudge around the patch was in order so dolled in all me wet gear and wellies,  off I went.
It started Promising with plenty of birds flitting around the undergrowth mainly Blue Tits and Long Tailed Tits with the odd Goldcrest and a Tree Creeper. Then another patch tick a Common Crossbill flew over calling. I moved a bit further down when I spotted a Muntjac Deer it was windy so it couldn't hear me and the wind was blowing towards me so it couldn't smell me either so I hunked down and managed to get these shots below as it slowly made its way towards me, ive never had such good views, stunner. They normally scarper as soon as they see or hear ya. It was my lucky day. Click pics to enlarge.

I moved on around to the ponds picking up 30-40 Redwing going over in dribs and drabs and then a Great Spotted Woodpecker landed close.

From here I moved onto The Old Sewage works but it was very exposed here and just Chiffchaffs really.
Finished with a couple hours sea watching, a Greylag was a patch tick, 26 Gannets all 1st winters but 1 adult, 25 Common Scoter, a couple of Little Gull and 3 Brent Geese but otherwise too quiet. Norfolk were getting Leaches Petrels, Sootys and Sabs gull but the wind needs to swing around a little , tomorrow could be good. I did go back out early evening for another go at Sea watching but just 3 Brents  and another Greylag Goose was really it..

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Black Darter and Marsh Harrier

Well the title says it all really on MY patch Corton new Sewage Works there's been up to 10 Black Darters on the small pond a VERY RARE Dragon for Suffolk there were less than half a dozen previous county records.  So today I nipped down and saw at least 3. Willow Emerald was also noted but im yet to catch up with one.

Then I moved over to The old sewage works where I watched a Patch tick come in off the sea a cracking female Marsh Harrier... but that was it really.

Going back to Black Darters in Cumbria this year a site had roughly a million Black Darters. Certainly clouds of them..

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Trimley Marsh

Well I decided it was time to go south to Ipswich and Trimley Marsh's I think people were laughing at me behind my back cos the walk to the Marsh was 3 miles away unknown to me. The walk went on and on and on. id have taken me bike had I of known as the track down was a really good track, so why the car park is so far away is anyone's guess.  So I finally got on site and nipped into the first hide I didn't have a clue where I was in relation to the Siberian Stonechat that I had come to see. The map was rubbish and the Visitor centre that was open mon-wed and weekends was shut too (eh its Tuesday). Great!
I did spot a couple of birders looking in some general direction so wondered what they were looking at, luckily it was the Siberian Stonechat, Bingo!.
Whilst stood watching the Stonechat, Brent Geese were calling behind me, a Spotted Redshank calling then flew over head then a second as did 37 Avocet and 2 Ruff., and a Greenshank. As I was leaving 44 Black-tailed Godwit flew over too. I wanted to view the pool that the waders had landed in but for some stupid reason the hide that looked like it would view this pool was SHUT! Muppets!. So I could only view from the bank through the reeds and I could only see a fraction of the pool. Rubbish! 2 Med Gulls was nice.
Someone here needs to review there policy on this site. Its and Extremely long walk so ALL hides should be open...

After my fill of the site I made the 3 mile walk back to the car picking up Little Egrets and a nice Brambling.

Sunday, 6 October 2013


Rach has come up to visit me with the dogs, So we headed for Kelling heath for the weekend. Wasn't really birding but I did still have my binoculars with me, first birds over were loads of Redwing and a few Bramblings then managed to hear and then found a Yellow Browed Warbler in a private garden in Sherringham, Then travelling on the train, the Poppy line, a  Ring Ouzel was feeding in a field we passed, this was between Sherringham and Weybourn and then it was a lovely evening so had a walk from Stiffkey to Warham Greens and saw the Red breasted flycatcher that had been about for a couple of days.  That was it really as most of our time was spent around Sheringham and on the Train.

Oliver Cromwell

Wednesday, 2 October 2013


Stomped the patch for ages and ages and ages today. Best was another Firecrest, loads of Goldcrest, a few Chiffchaff still,  Song Thursh in double figure numbers, and a flock of 8 Redwing. The rain came down late in the day just enough time for me to take a quick look but nothing new.
Ok so I didn't take this picture today but I did take it this year ;-)

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

That will do!!!

Didn't get on the patch this morning and guess what! Yup a nice bird was found. Ok so it was only a Firecrest but still would have been a patch tick. So I Got all me Jobs finished by about 2ish and headed out to the Old Sewage Works, a few Song Thrush and 3 Chiffchaffs was just about it. No sign of Firecrest  Doh! 
So moved onto the next bit of my Patch the disused railway, here I was able to pick up a late Lesser Whitethroat, and another couple of Chiffchaff.. THEN bingo bird of the day or birds of the day I heard the familiar call of the Firecrest and then another just great what a patch.. After it went quiet I continued round the patch picking up the Lesser Whitethroat again but not much more. Oh a Muntjac...

What will tomorrow bring.