10.30 found Bob and I at Walkers. Lovely hot cup of tea and then the Sausage and Bacon roll - large for Bob and small for me. Thats 2 sausages and 3 Bacon rashers in the small! I leave your imaginations to the large!
A new site to visit today - easily found on the outskirts of Norwich, Whitlingham CP.
A collection of ex gravel pits - now at least on the Large Broad full of waterfowl!
The Red-necked Grebe gave itself up very quickly as did the Great Northern Diver who was out in the middle of the Lake eating at Crayfish!
Then it was to find the female Ring-billed Duck - we looked down the lake and realised just how many Tufted Ducks there were - now this is where our research could have been better as I saw this morning when I looked at photos of the diuck on RBA! Itwas with the Pochards - and since there were considerably fewer Pochards - we could have saved ourselves considerable time - looking first at those- mind - since we interrogated all the female tufties - we would have ended up doing that anyway - of the RND - NO SIGN! Whether it was around the back of the island - well but it could have been tucked into the reeds - considerably cover there!
Then we spotted a Goosander - female but a first for the year....since we usually pick these up locally early Jan - but there has been very few! Then Bob found another - very good disguise against the trees and shrubs - its markings breaking up its position!
After seeing every variety of colour in a female tufty posible - Bob spotted the 1st winter scaup.
We had been here now for far longer than we had anticipated and the RLBuzzard we also wanted to see over on Chedgrave Marshes near GYarmouth had come up on the pager - I was getting a little twitchy! (There is a long staying RBD at Foxcote which we could go to see......I would prefer one to show up in ent or Sussex).
So we left - and had an adventure to get to Chedgrave Marshes.We came up to try for the Taiga Bean Geese which had been on the Cantley Marshes or Buckingham Marshes...
they had been reported on Saturday . So Cantly Marshes and to our usual place where we get good views across the Marshes - Taiga Goose - any Goose? Nope! In favct there were few birds- Mutes /Lapwings and Crows/Starlings!
So lets find our way to Chedgrave. I had spotted a road that crossed a river - the only one so to aviod going all round GY - we set out - Bob looked at his OS map....said its a Ferry ...what? Would it be running on a sunday? well we went off....to Reedham - as always it takes a lot longer than you imagine to travel a mile in Norfolk!We arrived at Reedham - and a sign said Reedham Ferry Inn. We arrived and there was a Chain Ferry - the only way acxross the Yare between Norwich and GY! The car cost £3.90 (it was £7.50 for a return - which we declined!)The Bob remembered they had come this way nmany years before and the expense had been turned down by his mate!
Its a very short crossing and 2 cars can get on the Ferry!
off to the Waveney Forest and arriving there there were a number of cars parked -we walked to the mound where ther were 20 or so birders watching - fortunately there were a couple of guyts there who knew what thay were doing -
We had already seen a Harrier inthe skies on route...
then there was our target bird -up and flying - wow clear marking on its tail - really white! Adult bird....great flying sight - then down onto the ground - some of that flapping of wings on the ground I have noticed before with RLB.
Later we had two RLB in the sky - the adult and another further to the east.
We had hoped we might see a SEO - it had hunted and shown well an hour and a half earlier so another dip!
I had arranged to ring Tim Allwood up at Sea Palling to check the weather up there - it had been foggy all day on Saturday - would we be able to get to the Raptor Roost at Stubb Mill....for our other target birs - Common Crane. Great news from Tim - it was overcast (like everywhere else today!) but ok!
So decision time stay for SEO? Or go up for the Cranes?
S we then had a fast trip up there -- as fast as I could go with some driver going 40 mph on the main A47! Some one tell him limit is 50!
We arrive d and on route to the Raptor watchpoint - we heard the trumpeting calls of the Cranes - damn had we missed them? As we walked to the wtchpoint streams of birders were walking back! 3 had flown in and flown off(the birds we heard)then another small group had gone to roost. Oh well here we were - so onwards.
At the watchpoint a couple from Kent staying in Hickling so had their bicycles - good bins but no scopes - due to cycles!
Bob counted 17 Marsh Harriers - in the air!
We waited ....and waited ...and waited - then the skies were full of Pink feet! Hundreds and hundreds all calling!
We waited and then Bob spotted 4 Cranes flying we all got onto them - they flew amnd went down in a field.
The couple left shortly afterwards....we waited 5 mins andrealised we were really cold....swift walk back and on route another Crane flew gracefully out ofthe sky into a field!
As we neared the road to the CP a Woodcock flew over our heads!
So 6 new birds for the non year list!