Norfolk Days

Four days in sunny drizzly cold windy Norfolk stopping in self catering accomadation near Cromer at Overstrand , Green Lawn House well run place well presented, clean, nice bed, small overall little bit of a problem with cases’ going in but rated a 3* which I would say was fair.

Anyway enough of that the birds, Monday 29th March travelling day with the accomadation near Cromer saw us firstly adding Alpine Swift [313] to my British List which was happily flying around Happy Valley near Cromer. We arrived at about 4pm’ish to get great views has the bird flew overhead  to within a couple of feet , identified by its larger size than the Common Swift with white belly/throat patch and slower wing beats, should have been summering in the Med somewhere but along with approx 4-6 other birds in the country was enjoying the British Springtime, there was also Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Dunnock and Robin.

Tuesday 30th was tourist day with a little bit of birding thrown in, Cley Spy in Glanford was first port of call for a rain guard, we needed it, I also had chance to view and play with a few pairs of binoculars namely Zeiss, Swarovski, Hawke, Minox before I was torn away to Blickling Hall. House was shut so we strolled around the grounds whilst I was adding Egyptian Goose, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Treecreeper, Great Spotted Woodpecker and Gossander [lake] to my list.

Stubbs Mill later on in the day to see Marsh Harriers a plenty, Hen Harrier, Buzzard, Kingfisher, Jay and Common Cranes.

Wednesday 31st we spent all day at Cley Nature Reserve on the coast, I love that visitor centre being able to view the whole reserve in warm, dry comfort makes it along with a cappuccino and a bacon butty for soft birding, well you have to spoil yourself now and again and it was raining excuses excuses. Birds well plenty of Marsh Harrier on view with 5 birds in the air at once, plenty of Avocet, Redshank, Brent Geese, Greylag Geese, Little Egret. When we did tear ourselves away from the cappuccino and bacon butties  sorry visitor centre we were rewarded with a hunting Barn Owl catching and enjoying a meal in the reserve fields. A few wildfowl were added to the list from the hides namely Shoveler, Mallard, Gadwall, Teal  and Shelduck. On then to the shingle bank for a bit of seawatching Red Throated Diver (3), Long Tailed Duck (2), Ringed Plover (2), Cormorant, Sandwich Tern, and Swallow (2) finally making it down to the Swarovski hide here we saw Ruff, Dunlin, Meadow Pipit, Black Tailed Godwit and Oystercatcher. 56 species for Cley, SEE LIST, the permit cost was £4 per person.

Thursday 1st April Huddersfield bound but not before stopping at Weeting Heath in the Brecks not much happening here 5 Stone Curlew reported for yesterday but down to 2 today and they were playing hide and seek mainly hide whilst we were there but we did add Woodlark, Pied Wagtail, Coal Tit, Buzzard (3), Lapwing ,Robin and a Muntjac Deer before leaving.

Whilst travelling back Red Kite (4) and Sparrowhawk (1)

Overview :- 18 year birds added [see Norfolk list] 1 even making it to the British List > Alpine Swift taking the year tally to date 132, 1 bird not seen which we were surprised at was Grey Heron

Weather played a big part in not taking photos or seeing smaller bird species we had Sun, Rain, Wind and even Hail whilst at Cley for a brief time here a couple of pics and some more at this link Norfolk Pics March 2010


Barn Owl at Cley Nature Reserve March 2010

Blickling Hall Norfolk

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