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Saturday, 23 February 2013

Saturday 23rd February Day 2 of 3 Day tour

Today got off a little slowly! We arrived at Buckenham, but couldn't find any White-fronts or Bean Geese, nor were they at Cantley either. We did however have lovely views of the beautiful Wigeon, around c1500 still present, plus lots of Lapwing, 2-3 Marsh harrier, 2 Buzzard & a selection of wildfowl.

Next stop still failed to produce target birds! With no sign of any Short-eared Owls, but some consolation was nice views of Golden Plover, 500+ Pink-footed Geese, Egyptian Goose, 2+ more Marsh harrier & lots of Lapwing.

Finally our 3rd stop came up trumps, with lovely close up scope views of c180 Bewicks & 26 Whooper Swan. A stop for lunch was brief in the biting cold wind! This produced more Marsh harriers, 2 Barn owl en-route; but lacked the desired Cranes. However shortly afterwards a 2-3 scans from various vantage points produced a fantastic group & the largest I have seen together this winter with 27 Cranes in a flock including 3 juvs.

We then headed for the coast, we did well (not only the birds we saw, but managing over an hour in the absolutely arctic wind on the beach!!). First up were a couple of really smart adult Mediterranean Gulls feeding along the shoreline with a mass of other gulls. The shoreline was littered with seaweed & closer scrutiny revealed a good number of shorebirds as well, c100 Turnstone, c20 sanderling, 2 Knot & the real stars 2 Purple Sandpipers. Close offshore beyond the reefs were c80 Common Scoter & 3 Red-throated Diver flew south.

We finished the day with a great raptor roost at Hickling, 2 male Merlin, 3 Hen Harrier including a grey male, c50 Marsh Harrier, 1 Barn owl, 5 Bewicks swan & 12 Cranes

Day two 101 species running total

One of todays Purple Sandpipers - 

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