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Sunday, 29 April 2012

Storks and Chat

B
y 7am I was Lowestoft Asda, there was no sign of the Alpine Swift.(It was seen later briefly over Asda by another birder at 6.10pm today) A Peregrine Falcon was perched by the side of one of the grills. By 8.30am I was driving down a very wet and muddy Damgale Lane near Acle, having located it by driving through Acle and taking the mini roundabout above the A47 and driving west. Reaching the end of the Lane I drove back and parkeed up and returnrd to the cross path area where I had seen a very helpful chap beckoning me over. Sure enough we looked out over to the far fields right at the back 2 excellent White Storks, both adults and unringed were feeding in the meadow by a gate and a hut not far from the railway line. One briefly flew up and then down again it showed in the wing that one primary was missing, were these wanderers from Thrigby Wildlife park, quite likely? John H and Jack W arrived and we enjoyed view for a few minutes before they walked left and out of sight. Meanwhile back at Lowestoft a look on the North Denes caravan park in driving rain revealed just 1 male Wheatear on the car park just a metre from Rob's car! We took shelter in the Wing Ting Dene reception and thanks to Rob's generosity we all had a nice Coffee each to warm us up. The Wing Ting Dene staff were also very helpful and even brought us a chocolate biscuit each, what service! We saw 2 excellent Wheatears fly in off the sea and west where they dropped behind the fir trees near the car park area. I had to go home as I was dripping wet! half an hour later I was back in the field, on the North Denes in the blue fenced Caravan park enclosure, a male Wheatear was quite confiding, I was edging ever closer around 30 feet away, he was resting and I was about to secure some great shots when a dog ran into shot and flushed it, I was very annoyed and put out. Another birder was gesturing to me to come over to the North Denes area just south of the enclosure and in a small bowl of flat grass bordered by longer grass a Whinchat could be seen stood on the ground, it was very confiding and I was able to edge closer to within 30 feet take some shots and slowly edge away without flushing it. Indeed Don & Gwen had some nice views of it in this area and also seeing it perched more typically on the top of a weedy stem. The rest of the afternoon was to be honest a disappointment, I didn't see the Garden warbler in front of Bird's Eye all I saw was a Chiff- Chaff and despite 2 hours at Maltsters Score, the male Redstart frustratingly gave me the slip at every turn, disappearing just before I arrived or on view the other side of the Score and out of my view. I saw a bird dart up to the top of the score and then dart down again in a very Redstart like way but nothing seen on it to confirm ID. Again, frustrating. A text for Paul W was a great help when we turned seawards and saw a Fulmar gliding north past the big wind turbine, thanks Paul. 2 calling Siskin flew in and settled at the top a of a tree in Maltsers Score, one was a smart male. A marathon trek around Gunton was also disappointing as no Ouzel of F'fare at Gunton School field and just a Jay in Gunton wood, Swallow over Gunton ORT and a small stunted Early Purple Orchid nearby to show for a trek around the Gunton ORT, Dip Farm, Pleasurewood Hills edge and Gunton Woods.

2 comments:

Paul Woolnough said...

Chris Baines found the fulmar as we walked back to our cars from the hard to see garden warbler next to Bird's Eye. (Did get the bird in profile in small tree at the back at one point briefly.)

Have done very little seawatching on the east coast, compared to north Norfolk, so this was my first Lizardland fulmar.

Took fulmar off my list of target species for Lowestoft area. Footnote saying "offshore" not applicable for a bird flying up and down the Gas Works Road side of Bird's Eye from Wilde Street for ten minutes until it flew north.

I do not expect to see fulmar overhead other than at Hunstanton cliffs!

Peter Ransome said...

Thanks again, Paul