• BirdForum is the net's largest birding community dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE!

    Register for an account to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Norfolk birding (1 Viewer)

firstreesjohn

Well-known member
Shore thing

I’m surprised that no-one has commented on my description of THE REDPOLL as having a ‘leonine’ appearance. This was in the mane Norfolk Thread, too. Andy Stoddart is to be applauded for the restraint in his ‘rant’: http://www.birdforum.net/showpost.php?p=2576548&postcount=25. Urbane and genteel that he be, he plainly does not submit himself to perusing some of the more vicious, nay libellous, tirades available to us happy readers- although some of his language is distinctly non-Cantabrigian ("beat . . up"!).

He described to me the wet and bedraggled condition of the poor creature, which he saw for only 5 seconds, before it took flight. Another highly-skilled observer related a similar tale: that, at first, it appeared thin (with its feathers soaked); only taking on a larger guise and fluffing up when dried out. (I am not intimating that it had alcohol-related issues!)

In a vain attempt to connect positively with a member of the pipit race, I went to West Runton. This was a big mistake. Over an hour of tramping from the rough ground to the other side of the beet crop and back, several times, yielded only flight views- without even the weakest schreep. The weather gradually worsened. Carl’s valiant efforts at sign language went right over my head (as did a Red Kite)- my Pooh-like brain uncomprehending of his two-fingered-waggling. (Methought he’d meant that Norwich Cathedral spire was toppling.) When explained later, it all made sense.

A few pages before (in the field guide), and the Salthouse Shorelark was at least (partially) viewable from time to time. Interestingly, and without any visible provocation, it flew off somewhere, with its accompanying Linnets and Pied Wagtails. Perhaps it was that pesky Kite, again.

you would be surprised the trawling that goes on through forums like this by the powers that be.

For once, I agree. I’m told that the BBRC (I’m sure everyone knows what this is an abbreviation of), for instance, does this. I do hope that “trawling”, not “trolling”, was the intended word !
 

Attachments

  • 001pse.jpg
    001pse.jpg
    353 KB · Views: 139
  • 014pse.jpg
    014pse.jpg
    348.5 KB · Views: 129

MJB

Well-known member
I’m surprised that no-one has commented on my description of THE REDPOLL as having a ‘leonine’ appearance.

John,
Perhaps I should have repeated my comment on this thread that i made when I saw the picture - "That's a really butch bird" - which I admit does not have quite the same descriptive ring to it as 'leonine'. How about 'Sphinxlike'?
MJB:t:
 

Penny Clarke

Well-known member
I go out for up to eight hours a day but see hardly anything, some birders like Penny and Corton seem to have the knack or the luck daily.
Oh no, they don't!!!!:-O Ok, so I only went birding for a couple of hours today, but I had the grand total of 6 blackbirds, 1 robin and 3 little egrets between Brancaster Staithe and Brancaster this afternoon.:-C

Penny:girl:
 

Stratton Birder

Well-known member
Was lucky enough to find a juvenile / 1st winter Common Rosefinch with about half a dozen Greenfinches at Winterton in the allotments by the church this morning. I go in there two or three times every autumn to try and find a Black Redstart and usually dont, so seeing this rosefinch was a truly mesmerising experience. Took me about ten minutes after the first observation to come back down to earth. Hadn't seen a juvenile for quite a few years and I'd forgotten how green-hued they are and how obvious the wing-bars are which at first made me think twice but then I got my head together and knew for sure what I was looking at. It remained long enough for four Winterton locals to connect with but unfortunately flew into some trees over the back before the majority of observers arrived and didn't show again.
However, there is a good source of food there, both on the ground and in the bushes so it could have been there a few days and it might be worth a shot again first thing in the morning or over the next two or three days in case its still around if anyone wants to try for it.
Apart from the rosefinch there was also a Ring Ouzel heard calling briefly, Water Rail at the small pond nearby and a few Siskins and a Redpoll over.
 
Last edited:

jimbob

Well-known member
Was lucky enough to find a juvenile / 1st winter Common Rosefinch with about half a dozen Greenfinches at Winterton in the allotments by the church this morning. I usually only go in there two or three times every autumn to try and find a Black Redstart and normally dont, so seeing this rosefinch was a truly mesmerising experience. Took me about ten minutes after the first observation to come back down to earth. Hadn't seen a juvenile for quite a few years and I'd forgotten how green-hued they are and how obvious the wing-bars are which at first made me think twice but then I got my head together and knew for sure what I was looking at. It remained long enough for four Winterton locals to connect with but unfortunately flew into some trees over the back before the majority of observers arrived and didn't show again.
However, there is a good source of food there, both on the ground and in the bushes so it could have been there a few days and it might be worth a shot again first thing in the morning or over the next two or three days in case its still around if anyone wants to try for it.
Apart from the rosefinch there was also a Ring Ouzel heard calling briefly, Water Rail at the small pond nearby and a few Siskins and a Redpoll over.

Nice work! Always enjoy your input Stratton Birder, and I'll admit to being slightly envious of this bird! Planning a serious grilling of Hemsby before half term is up, so will pop down to the churchyard and see if the bird is still about.
Cheers,
Jim.
 

Stratton Birder

Well-known member
Nice work! Always enjoy your input Stratton Birder, and I'll admit to being slightly envious of this bird! Planning a serious grilling of Hemsby before half term is up, so will pop down to the churchyard and see if the bird is still about.
Cheers,
Jim.

The bird was along the western edge of the allotments and spent a fair amount of time in the corner furthest from the church near the pond. It showed best at around 8.30. I'll be going back to have another look for myself tomorrow so I hope to see you there. You'll know me because I'll be wearing my Spurs hat although I dont know why after what happened tonight!!
 

O.Reville1989

I started off with nothing and I've still got some
The bird was along the western edge of the allotments and spent a fair amount of time in the corner furthest from the church near the pond. It showed best at around 8.30. I'll be going back to have another look for myself tomorrow so I hope to see you there. You'll know me because I'll be wearing my Spurs hat although I dont know why after what happened tonight!!

Not sure why you would wear it either! Absolute disaster.
Not even a life long spurs fan like me can put a positive spin on that.
 

Songkhran

Well-known member
I go out for up to eight hours a day but see hardly anything, some birders like Penny and Corton seem to have the knack or the luck daily.

Don't get disheartened - finding your own birds is hard! But from what you've said heres a few pointers:-
Body language - if your getting disillusioned you might find your body language slips you won't find anything looking at your feet! Always keep on looking up/around, put your self in the position to find birds
I've been out in prime conditions with drift migrants appearing all along the coast and its almost like you're walking around in a cloud of 'no birds'. It happens and then you think well with all this bad luck I'm due some good luck but you still don't find anything - perseverance is the key.
if you've got a pager try to use it more as an indicator rather than getting frustrated with it - its easy to start think if only I was there yesterday/tomorrow/at another site - it can distract you from being in the now.
Target species is good - in the yarmouth area heres a few - American Wigeon - check through all the Wigeon - but Wigeon are stunning looking birds anyway. American Golden Plover, keep on scanning through all the Golden Plover, Rough-legged Buzzard, the area the other guys are talking aboutfor the Short-eared Owl - the thing is about target species is that you seldom find exacty what you're looking for but you quite often find something else!
A slightly new one for me - if you are really not finding anything - twitch, i remember one year there were plenty of yellow-browed about, eventually i went for one at Stiffkey wood, rubbish views but as I cycled back I heard one calling on my patch, the next morning was getting point blank views of it.
Theres a whole thread in this and there was one on birdforum about how to find stuff I'll try to dig it out, but, as I'm sure my good Statton Birder :t: doubtless agrees with when it finally pays off its completely worth it!
 

Songkhran

Well-known member
oh and at least some of the time try to go birding with your peers, you will learn masses from taking on the advice of experienced birders who have a history of finding good stuff
 

firstreesjohn

Well-known member
'Sphinxlike'?

I’ve had another look, Mike, but stand by my description (see below). I presume you were referring to The Great Sphinx of Giza (Arabic: أبو الهول‎ Abū al Hūl, English: The Terrifying One), as the term is, of course, generic.

Congrats, Steve: you now have rose-tinted bins (?).

I go out for up to eight hours a day but see hardly anything

This is what happens to most birders, most of the time. No-one can find raries every day. I’ve told the tale of going out to t’Hills once and seeing only possible Chiffchaff. I do the walk to Gramboro’ hundreds of times a year and see a goody once in a blue wotsit. Yesterday, for instance, the only bird of note (in fact several) was flyover Lackgoal LostSpurs (LA), about which I almost immediately forgot, as they’re so regular here- although I didn’t see/hear any yellow & green Siskins, let alone ecstatic Canaries.

some of the time try to go birding with your peers, you will learn masses from taking on the advice of experienced birders who have a history of finding good stuff

This is quite true. But be critical and ask ‘why do they do it that way, rather than another?’ Most of my early birding was done, unfortunately, with two other birders my own age; we learned by our own mistakes. We covered one site over and over again.

It must, obviously, be a site that either has a history of attracting birds or the potential to do so. As I said on another thread (http://www.birdforum.net/showpost.php?p=2573990&postcount=1885), knowing a few sites well is more than half the battle.

Read Pete Dunne (see below) and laugh about your birding. Don’t get too hung up; it’s supposed be a pleasure. Some seem determined to make it the opposite.
 

Attachments

  • Lion face on.jpg
    Lion face on.jpg
    113.6 KB · Views: 82
  • 186pse.jpg
    186pse.jpg
    290.6 KB · Views: 111
  • Sphinx.jpg
    Sphinx.jpg
    35.9 KB · Views: 70
  • Dunne.jpg
    Dunne.jpg
    51.1 KB · Views: 88

Cortonbirds

Well-known member
Like Penny I too do not have the luck you presume GYbirder. Putting in the hours in the right spots at the right time will produce some decent stuff on occaisions sure but its maybe around 1% of the time and most time is spent going around a patch seeing very little indeed. Anyway 40 Waxwings you reported over Yarmouth and the Snow Buntings are kinda decent....chin up:)
 
Last edited:

Paul Eele

Well-known member
Titchwell November 1st

Today’s highlights

Red necked grebe – 1 offshore
Slav grebe – 1 offshore
Great Northern diver – 1 offshore
Long tailed duck – 5 offshore
Shag – 1 offshore
Water pipit – 1 on fresh marsh
Woodcock – 1 in scrub near carpark
Snow bunting – 40 on beach
Yellow legged gull – adult on fresh marsh
Spotted redshank – 6 on saltmarsh

Paul
 

James Emerson

Norwich Birder
At Cley today this White-fronted Goose was mixed in with a flock of Greylags close to the path to the central hide complex.
 

Attachments

  • White-front (800x600).jpg
    White-front (800x600).jpg
    434.8 KB · Views: 139

paulptct

Paul Taylor
A good list of typical winter birds.

On another note got this Guillimot with my compact at Gorleston Pier, while fishing today. Just looking out to sea and nearly missed it cos it was under my feet.
Sadly NO fish
 

Attachments

  • Guillimot IMG_1237.jpg
    Guillimot IMG_1237.jpg
    242.5 KB · Views: 128

Stratton Birder

Well-known member
Good to see lots of handy advice on this thread regading finding birds, staying focused and just plain keeping your chin up when things get tough :t:

Slogging around all day looking for migrants and / or scarcities can often be hard work, so if your legs are feeling it, sit down and watch the sea or go to a marsh with a hide for a short while. If its somewhere like Cley you know you're gonna see birds and although they might be common, just little things like how they catch the light (has anyone else noticed how gulls positively shine in dull light) or an interesting bit of bird behaviour can get you back on track for another afternoon walkaround. When the days are are short although I occasionally do it, resist the temptation to go to a coffee shop. You could lose a good hour or more of your day and the only birds you're likely to see in the shop will be the pet parrot or stuffed birds in glass cases. Lastly, even the dullest day out is better than work so enjoy your free time and the fact that you are persuing what you enjoy.

A walk along the Horsey Nelson track this afternoon produced Hen Harrier, Short-eared Owl, Swallow, 25-30 Blackbirds, Brambling, two Redpolls over, a Hoodie hybrid and a Common Darter. A Velvet Scoter was on the sea among a raft of 385 Common Scoters and there were the usual scattering of Guillemots and one Razorbill.

PS. Amendment to the coffee shop rule - when you find a really good bird, go treat yourself to a nice cuppa or better still, a good pint - you've earnt it!!
 
Last edited:

firstreesjohn

Well-known member
On another note got this Guillimot. Sadly NO fish

I’m sure it would’ve tasted fishy !

Gramboro’ held a couple of Robins and female Stonechat. Chatting on the Beach Road, I noticed a grey/brown bird fly over the fence and land on the shingle, just east of the Little Eye. Shorelark ? Sure thing- once confirmed in the ‘scope. Running along the shingle, I reached near enough to it for a poorish shot, before it was flushed.

As I was finishing a late lunch in Wells beach car park, I saw a convoy of three people carriers being driven the wrong way around the car park, then have decanted from them the noisiest family groups I’ve had the misfortune to hear in a long while. I almost got back in mine, so appalling was the racket.

I reached the first section in Wells Woods, as they walked along the main path. It was as if a troop of gibbons had recently arrived, such was the volume of whooping, howling and yelping. This almost (?) balanced the shouts of the dog-people (with the barking of their ill-behaved hounds), as they attempted to retrieve them from chasing after muntjac/squirrels/pheasants; perhaps they should have used Retrievers.

Anyway, apart from Chiffies, there was not much to report, until I ventured along the main track, after being told that 2 Yellow-browed were by the Drinking Pool. They might have been. No sign for Muggins.

However, a few Redpolls flew over, calling, and I had brief glimpses of unphotographable Lesser and what appeared to be a Mealy.

Sunset was enjoyed from the caravan park bend in Wells Woods, looking towards St Withburga’s at Holkham- one of the few churches in the UK named after her. Her body was said not to have decayed some fifty years after her death. That'd be five decayeds, then !
 

Attachments

  • 007pse.jpg
    007pse.jpg
    365.8 KB · Views: 148
  • 047pse.jpg
    047pse.jpg
    338.1 KB · Views: 110

Tractorboy69

Well-known member
More Cromer Shags

There were staggering numbers of Shags around Cromer Pier today, with numbers building up throughout the afternoon as they came into roost on the lifeboat ramp.

We managed to count 71 birds but there were undoubtedly more present as viewing the whole area at once is very difficult, and I managed to read 15 darvic rings which I'll endeavour to trace in due course.

Simon

Edit: Nice comparison pic of Shag & Cormorant taken today attached
 

Attachments

  • Shag7.jpg
    Shag7.jpg
    280.8 KB · Views: 263
Last edited:

Users who are viewing this thread

Top