Sunday, 3 July 2016

Good Birds.....poor pics!

Over the last few weeks in my quest to reach 400 species in the UK before I'm 50 (without going really mad) I have gone just a bit further afield. Norfolk to be precise with the draw of GREAT KNOT and CASPIAN TERN, two birds I was yet to see in the UK. The plan was to go to Lincolnshire in fact and look for the Caspian Terns then head onto to Titchwell to look for the Great Knot. This plan didn't quite come to fruition as the day in question the Caspian Terns disappeared. I did however catch-up with and was very happy to join the small crowd on Titchwell beach and watch the Great Knot most of the morning of the 19th June, it never came close but good scope views were more than adequate to pick out all the necessary features, in amongst the 100's of Knot gathered on the beach. So 395 was now the total of my British list. It was nice to see several LITTLE TERNS, LITTLE GULLS and a large flock of COMMON SCOTER on the sea during the morning.
With half a day left to meander through Norfolk and no sign of the Caspian Tern, I headed off to do something I had been meaning to do for years and that was to look for SWALLOWTAIL butterflies at Strumpshaw Fen near Norwich. It was easier than I thought and busier than I thought, just as I approached the visitor centre a group of camera clad enthusiasts were clicking away at two of these special insects, I gladly joined in, a few hundred shots later, my thoughts turned to another insect I had never seen NORFOLK HAWKER, a short stroll into the meadows and several of these beauties were found patrolling their own little stretches of water filled ditch. The meadows were dotted with Southern Marsh Orchids to add to the Bee Orchids I'd seen close to the Swallowtails. An hour or so in the hide looking over the marsh produced a couple of HOBBIES, MARSH HARRIER (3) and a few flitting BEARDED TITS.
That evening I returned home to the news a Caspian Tern was seen at Breydon Water. Thankfully after disappearing for a couple of days it was refound and on the 26th I headed back up to Norfolk. Once I found the ASDA car park, I was soon watching this brute of a tern, firstly through a bit of heat haze but eventually after a bit of time close enough for the haze not to be a problem, again not amazingly close but great scope views. this time on the way back I popped into one of my favourite places Dunwich heath and watched a few feeding parties of DARTFORD WARBLERS and STONECHATS.
The local patch has been a bit neglected so still on 101 for the year. I did however head up to the Isle of Grain yesterday and enjoyed good views of the RED BACKED SHRIKE that has been there for a week or so now, it was also nice to bump into Sean and Barry while there and have a quick catch-up.

Heavily cropped Great Knot!!!

Swallowtail - Strumpshaw Fen

Southern Marsh Orchid

Norfolk Hawker
Caspian Tern

Caspian Tern

Dartford Warblers

Young Stonechat

Red Backed Shrike

Red backed Shrike

1 comment:

Helma said...

You've seen a lot and enjoyed it and that's what's important.
You leave here again see gems of pictures. Beautiful butterfly and amazing birds. I enjoyed it.
Greetings, Helma