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Old Friday 29th September 2006, 20:29   #226
Binoculators
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Anybody in the Great Yarmouth area read the report in the Great Yarmouth Mercury regarding the sad news of the death of the Winterton Rose-Coloured Starling?

The report blames the birders, saying they were not interested that it was frail and did not care that it was chased to death. They were only interested in getting a look or a decent piccy. It also says there is a code of conduct to avoid harassing tired migrants.

Anyone have any thoughts, some people in Winterton told me it had a couple of large ticks on it. Does this mean it was doomed anyway or was it literally chased to death?

Any comments?
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Old Saturday 30th September 2006, 08:43   #227
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Theres already a thread on it in the "Birds and Birding" sub-forum. Check it out.
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Old Saturday 30th September 2006, 16:09   #228
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Binoculators
Anybody in the Great Yarmouth area read the report in the Great Yarmouth Mercury regarding the sad news of the death of the Winterton Rose-Coloured Starling?

The report blames the birders, saying they were not interested that it was frail and did not care that it was chased to death. They were only interested in getting a look or a decent piccy. It also says there is a code of conduct to avoid harassing tired migrants.

Anyone have any thoughts, some people in Winterton told me it had a couple of large ticks on it. Does this mean it was doomed anyway or was it literally chased to death?

Any comments?
Yep the reports are drivel. The bird was behind a large fence in a BT compound all day sunday, so nobody could chase it to death even if they wanted to!
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Old Sunday 1st October 2006, 10:03   #229
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Went to Snettisham Coastal Park yesterday (Sat 30th Sep). 2 lots of redwings 22 and then 15 over Snettisham Coastal Park between 7.45 and 1pm. 3 chiff chaffs + 2 blackcaps. Hundred + housemartins and same of swallows. Lots of goldfinches and Greenfinches. 1 whitethroat, 1 grey wagtail.1 Sparrowhawk, redshanks, lots of chaffinches, lots of reed buntings, green woodpecker, pinkfooted geese flew over, lots of robins, sandwich terns. Moved on to Holme, 4 gannets. Lots of swallows and martins and also 2 swifts (swifts not seen by me). Norfolkbirder (BF member, I am sure he won't mind me putting this) had a peregrine (late pm) at HBO as well. My mother saw a merlin by Holme Golfcourse early morning. Lots of social banter at Holme Bird Observatory today! Ended day with photographs of a complete rainbow over Redwell Marsh (from hide) coming down left side of Holme church - beautiful.
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Old Sunday 1st October 2006, 18:06   #230
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twitching behaviour

Going to get in there first Tim. When East Norfolk birding today and was confronted by uncharacteristically high numbers of birders, probably as a result of the Pallid Harrier. Aside from the usual muppets parking their cars and blocking the road etc, I witnessed some of the silliest twitching tactics in almost 20 years of birding. Some stupid numpty ran into a farmers private farm compound to get a three second view of the cranes (which were visible anyway from a short distance down the road). Understandably, the farmer wasn’t too happy. He came out and shouted at the person in question. Worse than that though, he then took his dogs and deliberately flushed the cranes to spite the birders. I just want to remind people birding in Norfolk that antagonising Norfolk farmers (most of whom own shotguns) is a very stupid thing to do. Not so much because you risk getting a backside full of lead shot (although you do!), but because they are likely to become a lot less bird friendly as a result. Wouldn’t overly surprise me if he took a shotgun to the cranes next….
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Old Sunday 1st October 2006, 18:10   #231
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Unfortunately mate, i got in their while you were driving home

see the cranes in Norfolk thread!!!

muppets

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Old Sunday 1st October 2006, 20:12   #232
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Ho Hum

Had to go to Norwich the other day so took the opportunity to ride there & home again

On the way in there was definitely an Autumnal feeling ... C.40 PF Geese overhead near Acle, two seperate flocks of mixed Lapwings & Golden Plover and noticeably more Jays than i've seen for a long time. But then i hit a brick in the road which gave me a puncture in each tyre and caused my headlamp to fall off & break, which sort of put the dampeners on it all for a while.

During the late afternoon / evening i rid back again (with my tyres full of air again and a new headlamp) and had hoped to see one or maybe two harriers across Stokesby levels but perhaps its a little too early, though it was still interesting enough with a Sparrowhawk, one each of both Tawny & Barn Owls, a pair of (well, 2 anyway) Roe deer and amongst some of the fantastic cloud formations there was a great show of lightning inside one high towering cloud whichwas a real treat to watch as i pedalled along the deserted country lane.

Bats too, near Runham, small ones, but dunno what sort they were ... any ideas ?
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Old Sunday 1st October 2006, 22:14   #233
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ilya Maclean
Aside from the usual muppets parking their cars and blocking the road etc, I witnessed some of the silliest twitching tactics in almost 20 years of birding.
What makes you think they were twitchers?
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Old Sunday 1st October 2006, 22:21   #234
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Hey Trevor, hope all is well with you...

We don't get many people usually

only when there's something to be seen

It was the Pallid this time, as Ilya mentioned, which is fair enough, nice bird n all that.

anti social, inconsiderate or just unthinking - it makes it difficult for the rest of us. I will try and have a word with the farmer when i can. He certainly wasn't in the mood today!

was the guy a 'twitcher'? mega short views then running off? Maybe. Maybe not. Prize idiot though.

Tim
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Old Sunday 1st October 2006, 22:36   #235
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Had a quick evening walk to RSPB Titchwell this evening and saw several Brent Geese feeding on shoreline!! There were about 10 I think. I was just about to count them, when a non-birder (with a small piece of paper in his hand!!!?) suddenly appeared from nowhere, he and his actions looked most peculiar, my instinct told me to march back asap, being as I was the only one up this end of reserve. Extremely bl**dy annoying when you feel like that. Oh, I counted 48 egrets roosting as well. End of my holiday Oh well BIG high tides to look forward to this weekend
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Old Sunday 1st October 2006, 22:36   #236
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Hi Tim, I'm fine and trust you are too. Spending more time in the 'field' these days, good time of year in Florida.

I thought your mate was suggesting the cranes were being twitched...silly me!

Don't get yourself shot by that nasty farmer; Birdforum wouldn't be the same without you
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Old Monday 2nd October 2006, 09:20   #237
Ilya Maclean
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Hi Trevor

Tim summed it up, but I think I recall him mentioning having gone for the Pallid Harrier earlier in the day. Fairly irrelevant whether he was or not, the main point being any birders of any sort should take care not to antagonise land-owners, particularly those who’s land is important for birds. Of course, apologies to the vast majority of birders who behave responsibly.

Cheers

Ilya

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Old Monday 2nd October 2006, 10:03   #238
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Norfolk birding

Hi Tim,

10 hours at Holme, Saturday - pretty slow with respect to migrants.

40 Swallow & 2 Swifts (saw them well!!) 15+ Blackcap in the paddocks, few more "crests".

Had a Peregrine take a Redshank at Thornham channel, this was then taken from it by a ad female Marsh harrier which ultimately shared its stolen prize with 3 Crows!

12 Brents, 1 Spot Shank, slow westerly passage of 100 Mipits, 1 Grey Wag west, 1 Siskin (had 3 over the house this morning!).

Meeting Reepham birders in the Kings Weds night 815ish if you fancy a beer (all birders welcome!), am in Notts this coming weekend for stag do, so you can guarantee some improvement in the birding!!

Ta Chris
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Old Monday 2nd October 2006, 11:33   #239
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Norfolk Trip Report

Hi All,

Had a fantastic trip in Norfolk, saw 9 *lifers* and all the other birders we met were very friendly and helpful. Will definately be back soon to explore some of the other sites. Thanks all for your help, thought I'd post a brief trip report.

Friday 29th Sept - Shortly after arriving in Wells and enjoying some fish n chips we set off to Titchwell RSPB. Quickly spotted our first lifer, a pair of *Marsh Harriers* over the saltmarshes. Also spotted a number of curlew and little egrets on the marshes. Plently of teal, shoveler, gadwall and other wildfowl on the pools. Spotted and easily identified a *Common Sandpiper* from the Island Hide redshanks also about. A sparrowhawk flew low over the reeds and avocets could be seen on the far side of the pool. On the walk down to the sea spotted a *Grey Plover* and many BT Godwit. On the beach there were plenty of oystercatchers, turnstones, a few brent geese and 2 more lifers - *YL Gull* and *Sanderlings* on the shoreline. Returned to the hide on the way back and was rewarded by a view of a perched peregrine on a post (pointed out by other birders) and a flock of circa 50 linnets which settled for a nanosecond in front of the hide before swirling off again. A pleasing start to the trip

Sat 30th Sept - By far the best day - the longest list and longest time spent out birding. Boarded Bishops Boats at Morston, plenty of swallows about. On the boat out to Blakeney spotted little egrets, redshank, brent goose, curlew, GC grebe, cormorants and assorted gulls. Blakeney Point - what a fascinating place! Very sad to have to leave after only 45mins and nearly missed the boat lol. Next time will spend the day out there. There was a *Guillemot* sat on the grass and our delight at viewing such a beautiful bird at close quarters quickly turned to dismay as we realised the bird was sick and couldn't fly away Flocks of wigeon and oystercatchers visable. Saw what I think were 2 winter plumage black terns flying at great speeds (not sure, not ticked). Saw an adult *Arctic Skua* sat on the beach. Went out on boat to visit the two seal colonys. Two arctic skuas chasing down a common tern for fish. On way back saw the additional birds of GBB Gull and female eider. Without a pause for breath we were off to Cley Marshes. Constant and stunning views of Marsh Harriers there, at one stage 4 at a time. On the brook up to about 8 Little Grebe - I know they're common enough but up until a couple of weeks ago I had found them extremely elusive, but now there were adults and juvs just a few feet away :) There were 3 ruffs and 100's of lapwings on the scrapes and assorted waterfowl. The best sightings were from the banks leading up to the beach this included many redshank, 10 or more avocets (one really close see pic), *Sandwich Terns* and also stunning views of a *Spotted Redshank* (see pic). To top all this off a peregrine came over the carpark whilst we were packing away

Sunday 1st October - Sadly no lifers today, but our luck continued to hold out with the weather until mid afternoon. The weather had treated us well so we couldn't complain as the weather forcasts had been very grim. A bit more wind to bring unusual migrants would have been nice though In the morning we did Holkham Pines. Saw several members of the tit flock - blue, great, coal, along with a female blackcap, wrens and goldcrests, allthough not their mate the yellow browed warbler lol. Little grebes, shelduck, teal etc on the pools. Overhead we saw 5 jays fly over, 2 sparrowhawks, a peregrine and numbers of migratory sand martins. From the hide we could see a pair of Marsh Harriers hunting and one stopped in a field with its kill. I was a bit confused about the geese though, had heard there were a big flock of pink-feet in the area, we could certainly see a few large flocks of geese (possibly a few hundred geese in total), but most of them were far off and it was a bad light to distinguish them from greylag. There were smaller groupings of geese in the foreground (in groups of 5-7ish) and these ones were definately greylag. Please could anyone tell me if the larger flocks were pink-feet or are there also large flocks of greylag in the area? This was around lunchtime. Went up to Holme Bird Observatory (NOA), however our luck ran out with the weather, the skys opened and there was some thunder and lightning. Didn't see much up there at all, but was interested to observe an almost completely leucistic female pheasant. Had an interesting chat with the staff there who told us about their work and the best times to come back. Had to leave then to drive back to brum as time was getting on and it was raining again. Last notable sighting was a rather windswept kestel on the drive out of Holme.
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Last edited by KayD : Monday 2nd October 2006 at 12:20. Reason: Spelling mistakes
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Old Monday 2nd October 2006, 20:52   #240
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Norfolkbirder
& 2 Swifts (saw them well!!)

Are you sure that was 2 swifts!!!!!!!!

Have a good weekend, you will miss the spectacular high tides!!! Never mind, I'll take some photos with a proper camera in your absence!!!!

Best Wishes Penny
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Old Monday 2nd October 2006, 21:09   #241
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Originally Posted by kstar_76
Hi All,

was interested to observe an almost completely leucistic female pheasant.
Hi Kstar

Lovely report, glad to hear you had a good time. Blakeney Point is as you say 'a fascinating place'. Next time you come, walk to the Point from Cley beach carpark, its a long but amazing walk (bring drink and sandwiches + chocolate!), and you definately feel you have achieved something by the time you get back!!!! The 'leucistic female pheasant' at Holme you mention is the same one that sat in the grass hunched up looking like a owl for a split second once, as I put in an previous thread of mine!!!! Glad you went to Holkham, another really beautiful place. Well done with your new birds, you saw a good number of specious for a weekend. Lovely photos too. Glad you enjoyed your trip.

Best Wishes Penny
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Old Monday 2nd October 2006, 21:13   #242
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Originally Posted by Norfolkbirder
Hi Tim,

Meeting Reepham birders in the Kings Weds night 815ish if you fancy a beer (all birders welcome!), am in Notts this coming weekend for stag do, so you can guarantee some improvement in the birding!!

Ta Chris
Watcha Chris

yes, see you there, a bit of Abbott and a burger might be in order!!!

will bring Showler

be nice to see a face or two from here... we are very friendly, honest.
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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2006, 17:45   #243
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had a brief visit to buckenham marsh and strumpshaw fen this afternoon..

at buckenham,was told by another birder the pools by the ruined pump house have dried up so spent most of my time on the track overlooking the two wader scrapes along the riverside..good views of the following included

ruff 20+
snipe
lapwing
one juv little stint was pointed out by another birder
two family groups of egyption geese
two large groups of canada,barnacle and greylag geese
also two red breasted geese were seen with the barnacle geese,plastic no doubt but still a treat to see!

three marsh harriers were seen hunting along the marsh/valley towards cantley.

an hour or so at strumpshaw had two further pairs of marsh harrier with sparrowhawk and a kestral.bearded tits could be heard well from the visitor centre but not seen..no bittern treat either!

matt

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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2006, 18:22   #244
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No Cettis, Matt? I'm surprised at that!
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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2006, 19:36   #245
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No Cettis, Matt? I'm surprised at that!
yeah..forgot about those..

these are all over the place at strumpshaw!

matt
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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2006, 20:45   #246
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penny Clarke
Hi Kstar

Lovely report, glad to hear you had a good time. Blakeney Point is as you say 'a fascinating place'. Next time you come, walk to the Point from Cley beach carpark, its a long but amazing walk (bring drink and sandwiches + chocolate!), and you definately feel you have achieved something by the time you get back!!!! The 'leucistic female pheasant' at Holme you mention is the same one that sat in the grass hunched up looking like a owl for a split second once, as I put in an previous thread of mine!!!! Glad you went to Holkham, another really beautiful place. Well done with your new birds, you saw a good number of specious for a weekend. Lovely photos too. Glad you enjoyed your trip.

Best Wishes Penny
Thanks Penny, glad you enjoyed your holiday too. I could easily spend a week birding in Norfolk, definately stay a bit longer next time :)

I would like to walk sometime to Blakeney Point, as its such a great place. How far is the walk? The white pheasant at Holme was bizzare to see, threw me for a minute too. Would have liked to get a photo and it was only a few metres away from us, but unfortunately I'd run out of batteries (after all the dodgy digiscoping lol )

kstar

PS Have you got any idea about the geese I saw at Holkham? Still wondering about that :)
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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2006, 20:57   #247
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Nice one Matt - i must try to call in around there again sometime

Rid over Stokesby levels on my way to work this morning but Couldn't see any harriers again, Further on though i did spot the local buzzard a bit of a way off from the road - prob somewhere by Salhouse broad at a guess. I gather its a bit of an everyday thing for people in other parts of the country, but not for me so it was something of a treat to see. Actually i had wondered if it (they?) had moved on but obviously not. Good.

Gorgeous blue sky all around too
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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2006, 21:01   #248
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Reminder

anyone fancy a beer tomorrow night - King's Head in Reepham, 8:15. Should be a few of us...

Also in the Alexandra Tavern, Norwich, on Thursdays, from 9.00

Tim
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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2006, 21:34   #249
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Originally Posted by Tim Allwood
Reminder

anyone fancy a beer tomorrow night - King's Head in Reepham, 8:15. Should be a few of us...

Also in the Alexandra Tavern, Norwich, on Thursdays, from 9.00

Tim
Thank you for kind invitation Tim, but would be difficult to get to Reepham after I finish work here in King's Lynn, thanks for offer though, have a good
Best Wishes Penny
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Old Tuesday 3rd October 2006, 21:48   #250
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Originally Posted by kstar_76
I would like to walk sometime to Blakeney Point, as its such a great place. How far is the walk?

PS Have you got any idea about the geese I saw at Holkham? Still wondering about that :)
Hi Kstar

Its 5 miles each way to Blakeney Point and is hard going on the shingle if the tide is high, but it really is worth the walk though, as long as you have a rucksack full of goodies, eg chocolate etc!


I think the large flocks of geese you saw at Holkham were probably Pink Feet as well as grey lag, as they have started to arrive now, but I don't go to Holkham that often, I am sure a BF member who knows/goes to Holkham regularly will be able to tell you if the pink feet were there that day. (See Kstar's Post No 240 re: geese query).

Best Wishes Penny
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