Friday, 30 September 2011

Late September round-up

The remainder of the month has continued to be very slow going on the patch migrant wise with the persistent westerlies not giving way until the last few days with some SSE winds resulting in a bit of movement.

Best birds seen included a Pied Fly in Warren Wood, a Short-eared Owl in-off the sea there too, and a few Whinchats and Wheatears were incoming along the golf course.

A Grey Wagtail in my driveway was a nice house tick, and other birds noted on the move through the patch have included a Marsh Harrier in-off, the first Pinkfeet of the autumn, and vis-mig along the GC producing a few Redpolls and Siskins, Yellowhammer, the first House Sparrows that I can ever recall seeing along there, Lapwings, Meadow Pipits, Skylarks and Starlings, but the most notable were these 13 Grey Herons which came in high from the NE and then headed off west along the coast.

Off the patch a walk up the point yielded a Yellow-browed Warbler and a Redstart in the plantation showing that there were undoubtedly a few more things waiting to be found, but sadly this period will ultimately be remembered for the two 'Long-toed Stint' depressing fiascos and which brought the day that I happily phase that much closer.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Seawatching and a few migrants

With the steady stream of westerlies over the last couple of weeks migration has been pretty slow with just the odd Wheatear, Whinchat, Lesser Whitethroat and Blackcap seen round the patch.

Other notable records have included a few Swifts continuing to move through, a Hobby over East Runton, Dunlin and Common Sand on the reservoir, and a Med Gull feeding offshore from Overstrand.

Despite the 'wrong' winds, most action however has been on the sea with the highlights being a good evening passage of Manx Shearwaters on Tuesday, my first Sooty Shearwater of the year on Wednesday morning, and on Friday two more year ticks with a nice adult Black Tern and 2+ Balearic Shearwaters with one close in bird giving excellent views, and another which was watched lingering around one of the small crab pot boats offshore amongst the melee of gulls feeding on the discarded food being thrown overboard.

The first Brent Geese of the autumn were also noted along with Red-throated Divers, Common Scoter, Teal and Wigeon also on the move. Other birds noted passing by included Arctic and Great Skuas, Fulmars, Kittiwakes, a few auks and lots of Gannets.

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Early September

The first few days of the month have been pretty quiet around the patch with the only notable sightings being the first Wheatear of the autumn on Cromer GC, a nice summer-plumaged Red-throated Diver close inshore off Overstrand along with a good count of 52 Cormorants on the beach, and the very noteworthy local sight of a Marsh Harrier quartering fields towards Northrepps.