Sunday, 31 July 2016

Purple Swamphen Minsmere

A quick blog post about the most amazing UK lifer for me this year, (if it gets accepted).
Id had a couple of hours on the patch first thing with just  Common Sandpipers and a Common Tern to show for it. COSW. So had a trip out to the Norfolk Broads and back through Horsey but everywhere was packed so didn't actually get to stop anywhere.
Then this beast the Purple Swamphen turned up at Minsmere so after dropping Rach and the dogs off at home I headed straight for Minsmere. Twitch on.
Arrived on site to 30 or so folk NOT watching it but after only a few minutes the bird appeared at the back of the pool very distantly.

I hung on for a couple more hours and was rewarded with closer views, what a stunning bird and if accepted could be a UK first :-)
I did managed some better record shots :-)

After the bird went into hiding and further away I headed for East hide to watch the multitude of nice waders. ill add pics later.

On the way home I nipped into Walberswick and found a nice Adult Yellow Legged Gull In a hand full of lesser in the pig fields.

Cracking finish to the weekend.... Brilliant.

Monday, 25 July 2016

Bairds Sandpiper

Starting with yesterday (Sunday). I was out on the patch seeing not a lot as usual but the highlights were a Whimbrel, 12 common scoter, 3 common tern. 3 teal. Yellow wag over CNSW pond.
Finally a cracking Humming Bird Hawkmoth as I walked along the fields from the NSW.
Anyway I checked twitter to see a Bairds Sand had been found at Minsmere, Rach had the van so I couldn't do anything unti she returned at 3 but that gave me the chance to watch the Grand Prix.
So I headed for Minsmere and was frustrated by the blazing sun right in my face whilst watching the Bairds, only my 2nd, I managed a few shots between the times the sun was behind the clouds. Still pretty poor shots but a nice bird and I was just pleased to see it. A very distinctive adult.

Whilst waiting for the sun to go behind the clouds I checked the rest of the scrape, a few nice Little gulls, 2 Whimbrel, Greenshank, 3 Little Ringed plovers and plenty of Ruff and Spotted Redshanks.

I forgot to mention as I was rushing towards the East hide for the Sandpiper I saw a Magpie killing and eating a poor Slow worm.

After my fill of the Bairds I headed back along the north wall to look for the Stone Curlews, 2 adults didn't disappoint.

A few yards away this Digger Wasp was showing well.

So back to Friday, I took the day off work and headed for Minsmere funnily enough, no Bairds sand that day but started in the car park with a nice Honey Buzzard circling with 2 Marsh Harriers, a nice surprise. Other highlights were Stone Curlew, 20+ Spotted Redshank 12 Little Gull, 9 Ruff, and a Little Stint. Sanderling Kittiwake, Common and Little Terns, Whimbrel and a Med Gull

Back on patch a year patch tick in form of a simple Redshank. Common Sands returning, 2 Fulmar were  surprise and other birds moving were 5 Common scoter and a Yellow Wagtail.
Things will heat up soon I'm sure.

Lastly as I went to be last night my first Pterophorus pentadactyla on the bathroom window, what a beast.

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Hicklng and my Garden Pond.

Visited Hickling broad yesterday and was hoping for Swallowtail but it was too windy and overcast.
Pick of the birds from the hide on Weavers way were a Curlew Sandpiper, Greenshank, 3 Little gulls, 28 Ruff and 47 Black tailed Godwits.

Spent Sunday in the Garden with a few nice pond ticks and a Corton and Patch tick. a very nice male  Banded Demoiselle. The pond ticks were Common Darter and Azure Damselfly. Also on the pond Blue tailed and Common Blue Damselfly. A Brown Hawker flew through the garden too. Butterflies were Gatekeeper, Red Admiral, Meadow Brown, Large White and 2 Comma's.
Did a little bit of pond dipping too and found many Newt Nymphs, great to see the pond so full of wildlife after it only being in less than 6 months. Lastly a Red-Brown Longhorn Beetle.


Sunday, 10 July 2016

Local stuff

Been a quiet week on the patch with nothing much doing. The exception was Wednesday night when at the OSW 2 Common Tern came in off, 2 Med Gulls went south and a hobby was hunting over the Dis rail track.
I had a count of the Bee Orchids on site but it was a disappointing show this year of 84, down from last years 300+. A wander beyond the fences found 3 Pyramid Orchids, up on the single one last year.

Had the night off from the patch Friday evening and headed for Carlton Marsh but it was very very quiet and other than lots of Southern Marsh Orchids a Hare and a Muntjack.


Back on patch this weekend and a couple of Whimbrel on the move, many Kittiwakes. Down at the NSW pond a big fat patch tick was very exciting even if it was a Sedge Warbler. Rare here with only 2 other records.
I took advantage of the Dragonfly's about with many Emperor 1 Brown Hawker and a Norfolk Hawker. Small Red Eyed Damselfly too.
Then whilst watching one of 3 Emperors a young mallard took it whilst it was laying its eggs, amazing watching.

A family of Jays, Green woodpeckers and Great Spotted Woodpeckers ended patch time.
Sunday the sport took over and no birding done.