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Tuesday, 9 October 2012

9th October Birding 3 Day Tour

9th October 2012 - Cley & Kelling areas

The day started at the accommodation as we loaded the van;drawing attention with their "seep" call a nice group of Redwing flew over, against the backdrop of blue skies.

Birding started for "real" at Cley & a seawatch produced a nice selection of birds, plus a lovely passage of Little Gulls, with over 100 passing west.

Also present in good numbers were Kittiwake & Gannet. Several Red-throated Diver flew past & an obliging bird was on the sea close inshore.  Auks passed by in numbers & several Guillemot were sitting close by in the surf. 

Several groups of Common Scoter hurried past, plus a few Pintail & small groups of Brent. Several Great Skua & 2 Arctic Skua flew past, but were distant. Overhead Meadow Pipit & a few Rock Pipit called & passed by.

We then headed over to Kelling & had lovely views of the juv Pectoral Sandpiper, again, showing very well. We headed on towards the shore, a Wheatear alighted in front of us, 2 Goldecrest were close by, plus a Blackcap & large flock of mixed finches. 4 Bearded Tit flew high & away.

On the shore we had lovely views of Grey Phalarope feeding in the surf, plus 1-2 more Red-throated Diver.

After a really nice mornings birding we lunched at Cley & then headed down the east bank, Bearded Tits showed very well. On Arnolds marsh there was a good selction of shorebirds, 100+ Black-tailed Godwit, a Spotted Redshank, 2 Grey Plover, Knot, Avocet, a few Ruff, Lapwing, c25 Dunlin, Curlew & 4+ Little Egret.

On hearing a Snow Bunting distantly I decided we should wander along the North bank, eventually we tracked them down & had really close views of 2 Snow Bunting the birds feeding on the seed heads. Just a few seconds later, an Arctic Skua swept past, just along the tideline, it passed overhead & landed on Arnolds Marsh causing much panic before departing east. 

The excitement continued as a few minutes later a Merlin screamed by in pursuit of a Meadow Pipit, crossing paths at the same moment with a Peregrine, confusion as none of us knew which bird to keep our bino's on!!

The excitement settled with a final seawatch, that produced more of the same as per the morning , but with better views of Great Skua plus an Arctic Skua chasing Kittiwake. Finally the oddest bird of the day an albino Guillemot!

85 species

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