Monday, 29 August 2011

Cley NWT - 28.8.11

The juv Red-Backed Shrike, the juv Red-Necked Phalarope, the 8 sleeping Spoonbills and 3 of the Curlew Sandpipers (honestly!)

It was a toss up where to go with birds at Cley and Cromer but we decided on Cley first. We pulled up into the car park infront of the new reserve centre and from there we could see the 8 Spoonbills but there were other birds I wanted to see so we payed our money and went for a wander. First stop was Bishop's hide where we eventually got a seat and started to scan the birds infront of us. The 8 Spoonbills hadn't moved an inch and were doing what they do best and sleeping! The year ticks started falling with a very impressive 25+ Curlew Sandpipers, 5 juv Little Stints, Wood Sandpiper and only my 3rd ever Red-Necked Phalarope but my 1st juv. Other notable birds were a Marsh Harrier a Hobby which spooked all the waders and at least 20 Ruff. We left after a while and headed towards the East bank but rather than walk up it we carried on towards Walsey Hills NOA where after a short walk we found our quarry, a lovely juv Red-Backed Shrike that was busy catching and eating Wasps! This was my 8th in the UK! We then walked up the East bank where I saw 2 Greenshank and then added Spotted Redshank to the year list. We finally arrived at the beach car park where Barbara had a rest and I did a brief seawatch. Sandwich and Common Terns and a few Gannets was about it until I had my last scan of the water and to my delight I picked up a Sooty Shearwater about half way out and watched it as it flew West. A Meadow Pipit, 2 Yellow Wagtails and a Wheatear were added to the notebook on the way back to the car. A quick stop off for an ice cream in Salthouse produced 33 Egyptian Geese in the fields and the lonely Greylag Goose who is a favourite of one my friends was still there! After a 20 minute journey we arrived in Cromer and had a spot of late lunch before I had another quick seawatch which was even more quiet than Cley (apart from the sooty!) but that was soon broken when a lone Puffin flew East just off of the end of the pier! We stopped off for 30 minutes at the nearby Warren Wood but there was no sign of the Western Bonelli's Warbler (should have gone there first and seen it in the morning!) 8 year ticks though so I can't complain!

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