Saturday, 31 May 2014

South Gare Bee-eaters

A nice surprise on the way back from Suffolk yesterday was the chance to see these two stunning adult Bee-eaters at South Gare. We manged great views...

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Suffolk - Day 5

With nothing interesting seen on day 4, I was pleased to get out birding on day 5. Up first was a trip to Landguard, where it was soon apparent yesterday's Greenish and Rosefinch had moved off. Not to bad as neither would have been ticks. Afterwards we met up with the rest of the family at Minsmere and spent the rest of the afternoon there. A female Red-backed Shrike was elusive but showed well in the end. 4+ Bittern, 3 Hobby, 3+ Cetti's Warbler and 3 Marsh Harriers all showed brilliantly. A calling Tawny Owl was nice, as was a few Red Deer. You don't often see first-summer Mediterranean Gulls in Northumberland, so I was pleased to see a bird in this plumage do a close fly-by.


Red-backed Shrike

Marsh Harrier

Mediterranean Gull



Red Deer

Monday, 26 May 2014

Suffolk - Day 3

Another early start saw us heading to a heath, where we were soon onto our target Dartford Warbler. We saw at least 4 birds today, with at least 3 of them singing. One was colour-ringed. While watching the Warblers I looked up to see the distinctive shape of a Spoonbill flying over north. A nice addition to my self found list. Also at the reserve were Woodlark, 2 Stonechats, a Marsh Harrier and a couple of Hairy Dragonflies.

Dartford Warbler



Hairy Dragonfly record shot

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Suffolk - Days 1 & 2

We started our week in Suffolk with a walk out to North Warren yesterday evening. At first glance 3 Marsh Harriers were visible along with a Harris Hawk! It wasn't long before we picked up our first Hobby of the trip. A bit more walking resulted in a singing Cetti's Warbler, a Cuckoo and a 'booming' Bittern. Later on there was at least 9 Hobbies, some of which showed really well. Unfortunately it was just a bit to dark for photos.

After an early start we headed out to one of the heaths hoping that we might get lucky and see a Woodlark. We weren't expecting it to be easy, as they don't normally sing at this time of year, but we were surprised to find it quite easy. At first 2 birds flew over song flighting, and then another two Woodlarks flying across the heath, which landed in a tree very close by. It was nice to finally add Woodlark to my British list. A Cuckoo was also there as well as a couple of calling Green Woodpeckers.

Next we decided to have a quick look at Minsmere, which provided us with nice views of 3 Bitterns, a Cetti's Warbler (plus others singing), 2 Hobby and a couple of Marsh Harriers.



Saturday, 10 May 2014

Waders, Terns and Ducks

A bit of a twitch today, starting at Beadnell. When we eventually reached the flood, the stunning adult Lesser Yellowlegs was immediately visible, and although it provided nice scope views it was a bit to far away for photos. A Wheatear was also by the flood, as was a Jackdaw that looked good for a Nordic Jackdaw. Any thoughts are welcome on this bird.

After seeing a few Little Terns flying over we decided to go to the tern colony at the Long Nanny next. Sure enough there was plenty of terns including 10+ Little Tern, 3+ Sandwich Tern and 400+ Arctic Terns.

After finishing at the tern colony, we headed to Hoppen Kiln Flash as a few birds had been reported there recently. At first only the 4 Garganey were visible, but we soon picked up the Pectoral Sandpiper, which was my first in spring as well as the Wood Sandpiper.

Lesser Yellowlegs

Little Terns

Arctic Tern


Possible Nordic Jackdaw