Posts Tagged ‘Little Tern’


Had a day out with the boys across the border from York, we had planned to go to Spurn, but after a bit of thinking, headed for Teeside. There had been a lot of good birds in Teeside the day before, but, as sometimes happens they “clear out” overnight. I met the lads in York after missing a couple of turnings, we piled into Nige`s car and off we went. We firstly reached Haverton Hole and news of the Great Reed Warbler was not good,it had gone. Next stop was Seaton Common, quite a few birders hoping to see both Blue & Grey Headed Yellow Wagtails. After around 40 minutes we saw 2 Yellow Wagtails one of which was the Blue Headed, distant but nice, also Five Spoonbills flying over were a real bonus.
News of a possible Moltoni`s or Western Subalpine Warbler up on Holy Island (Lindisfarne) was then passed around and as it would be a lifer for one of the team, we decided to give it a go. We stopped just north of Hartlepool at Cribdon Dene and spent a nice 30 minutes with the breeding colony of Little Terns, excellent and sunny conditions. We arrived at Holy Island as the tide had gone out revealing the causeway. News was good on the Subalpine Warbler that had now been named as a Western. We paused as a female Bluethroat was found, with a male not a long way from it. We hurried along and had good views of the warbler almost continuously on show. The bird chased insects around the bushes all the time we were there as it must have been very hungry after its long journey.
Time was pressing on with a four and 1/2 hour journey to get back home, but surely enough time to see a Dotterel? The lads had already seen that species before this year, but after two ascent`s of Pendle Hill, failing to connect on both occasions I just had to try. I reached the area and around 12 other birders were searching for the Dotterel. It took about 20 minutes to find it as it must have been partially hidden in a dip in a sheep field!
I arrived home around 8-30pm having really enjoyed a good days birding with the lads from York, thanks lads!
Dave O.

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Anglesey. Saturday 23rd May 2015
Just myself and Bob K made the trip into Wales last Saturday due to poor weather forecast for Sunday etc. We left Shaw around 6am in my new (ish) Kia Rio Diesel. Decent conditions had been forecast. First stop was Holyhead Harbour and a couple of Black Guillemots were soon located, the weather was quite nice by now, so, on to South Stack. Always one of Bob and my favourite places to visit, such a variety of habitat and the view is spectacular! A small gathering of Choughs were watched feeding and as we walked towards Ellin`s Tower a few Rock Pipit`s were doing a bit of courting. After locating a few Puffins on the sea below the cliffs, a look north revealed a few passing Manx Shearwater`s with their stylish flight very much in evidence, what cracking birds they are! We passed along a new path, for us, after the RSPB visitor centre, with a sign saying, “Public Right of Way”. Bob was spoken to by a lady, who said, ” I own all this land, but not for much longer as I am sick of all you twitcher`s walking along this path”. We were both quite mystified by her comments and left her to get on with looking after a few goats! Not very many small birds were seen as we walked a few of the many paths above South Stack, time to move on. As we passed Penrhos NR a few terns were seen, in amongst them were 2 Little Tern`s, well spotted Bob! Next stop Cemlyn Bay with a very good showing by lot`s of Sandwich, Common and Arctic Tern`s. Along with a couple of breeding plumaged Mediterranean Gull`s you might have been forgiven for thinking you were on your holidays. Bob took advantage of the warm conditions and took a nap, whilst I tried in vain to take some pictures of the passing tern`s carrying food items. Returning to the car a local cow (Moo Type this time) had gone for a walk onto the shingle and stubbornly sat down on the car park, nothing the farmer could do would move it! We just missed a Yellow Wagtail and after a good search for the bird, returned empty handed, but we did managed to enjoy the view of the Skerries though. It was now quite sunny and so, we decided to stop at RSPB Valley. We have not been here for quite a while, but on this evidence we will call in again. Lots of warblers, Willow, Chiff-Chaff, Reed, Sedge, Cetti`s, Whitethroat and then we heard singing, a couple of Lesser Whitethroat. Lots of water birds made up a good selection at a nice reserve. We decided to set off for home at a leisurely pace and reached Rochdale by 5-30pm. Good day out in typically nice Anglesey conditions.
Dave OuseyIMG_8573


A family holiday spent at the Sahara Beach Hotel in Skanes, Monastir, Tunisia. It was our fifth visit to the area so I already knew where to go birding. Managed to do some birding every day, but mainly in the morning, usually around 6-15am as it became very warm around 9-30am. The area around this hotel is dominated by very large salt lagoons and lots of breeding birds, including Yellow legged Gull, Slender billed Gull, Little, Common and Gull billed Tern’s and good numbers of Collared Pratincole. Waders in the shape of Black winged Stilt, Avocet, Little Ringed and Kentish Plover. Lots of Greater Flamingo directly behind the Monastir Airport, along with Spoonbill and Stone Curlew in small numbers. At the local dump near Sahline, up to 180 White Storks were present but the spectacle of uncountable numbers of Yellow legged Gull will stay with me for a long while! In the hotel area’s Hoopoe, Serin, Crested Lark, Bee-Eater, Blackbird, Sardinian Warbler, Olivaceous Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Spanish Sparrow were seen in varying numbers. Around the salt lagoons various bushes and mixed habitat held up to 8 Great Grey Shrikes of the algeriencis form that allow close attention to photograph! Also in those area’ s are small numbers of Zitting Cisticola(Fan Tailed Warbler), Greenfinch, Linnet, Short Toed Lark and the abundant Rock/ Feral Dove. Smaller numbers of Collared, Laughing and Turtle Doves also.Large flocks of Spotless Starling are great to watch as they dig for food on the ground and squabble just like “our” one’s. There are lots of Swift and with a bit of luck a few Pallid Swift can be found as they chase their prey close to the ground. Small numbers of House and Sand Martins were seen, but not many Barn Swallow’s (think there is a sad decline this year in their numbers) On the journey from Enfidha Airport to our hotel a single Carrion Crow was seen flying around a small village, a bit unusual that? A single Barbary Partridge was seen one early morning in the scrub around the salt lagoons and in the evening a single Hobby was out hunting and then a flock of 5 Shelduck flew past. A few Kestrel’s and Sparrowhawk’s were seen again in small numbers. Our our return home and near the airport at Enfidha a Booted Eagle was seen hunting and great end to a very localised birding / family holiday.


Four intrepid souls risked another 24 hour birding trip,well it was only 23 hours really! An 11pm start after a gripping European Cup Final with Bob K at the helm. We had a little rain through Lincs and as we arrived at Dersingham Bog a little “sea fret” was in the air. Down into the bog we descended using two torches for company, ta Bob K, where a Grasshopper Warbler was “reeling” away, then a Nightjar was heard and as we got nearer to the sea a few mammals eyes were caught in our torches,quite an eerie feeling that was. A good number of Woodcock were around and a few more Nightjars & Grasshopper Warblers heard made up a good hours dark birding. Our next call was at Weeting Heath were the Stone Curlew were expected, but, only Rabbits & a Barn Owl were seen! At another spot a Stone Curlew was seen,but it took a bit of effort to find one. A dashing by Hobby was then seen as it chased its breakfast without much joy. Next stop our favourite reserve RSPB Lakenheath. Since the area was taken over by the RSPB the Golden Oriole population has fallen every year, probably too much disturbance by visitors. Having said that the reserve has come on greatly with Bittern,Crane,Hobby & Marsh Harriers enjoying a breeding boom! To see 2 Bitterns flying for a good 10 minutes then another flew past us and one carried on “booming” was a spectacle to behold, no Cranes or Orioles were seen though. Lots of warblers were singing in the reedbeds as we made our way back to the car and some refreshment, it was still only 9-30am! Back to the coastal area now and a new area to visit on Kelling Heath. We met a gentleman birdwatcher, who very kindly gave us a grand tour of his “patch” and what a thrill it was for us all, with Dartford Warbler, Turtle Dove & Woodlark all successfully located. His knowledge extended to the insects & plants of the area and the general history of the site, a real chance meeting for us all. A walk along the East Bank at Cley and seeing the damage caused to the area was very sad to see, only Little Tern was seen and an almost complete lack of any waders due to the high water levels. A tour of the North Norfolk “Hills” only revealed highish numbers of Marsh Harriers, they are doing well now that they have adapted to living amongst crop areas.A call at Choseley drying barns and then down to RSPB Titchwell were a Red Crested Pochard and 2 Little Gulls were seen, lots of birds and people were present (the day after a Slender Billed Gull would drop in) We had a needed cup of tea, then headed of to Whisby near Lincoln. We reached Whisby and it took us a while to locate a singing Nightingale but when we did it was a really good rendition from the bird! No sign of the Med Gulls at the site though, it was time to head for home as we were all becoming tired. About a 100 species were seen with us all getting between 12 – 20 year ticks. Its a hard trip but always very rewarding!

Dave O.


Our annual trip came around again and it did not disappoint. There were new birds for the year, a twitch, sunny weather and finally a loss which has become a found!  Me and Bob K left Rochdale early in dreadful weather on Friday and it looked good for, “bad weather,good birds” etc. By Hull the rain had stopped and as we reached Stonecreek the clouds were breaking up. We met up with John from Leeds, as we always do and he told us of the local bird news. The walk to Sunk Island Battery was a little uneventful, but we always do it and pay homage to the place were the Mugimaki Flycatcher was found (get a life, I hear you say) Why have they not accepted that bird yet? A colony of Tree Sparrows are now well established in the area. We did not call at Patrington Haven as the tide was out, so we pushed on to Easington. There had been a Yellow Browed Warbler and a Ring Ouzel earlier and despite searching and help from some friends from York, we drew a blank. We headed for Spurn and Chalk Bank hide, seeing a Little Tern and a Purple Sandpiper and a flock of Brent Geese along with lots of waders as the tide began to turn. There was a few people around and the news about a strange Locustella warbler was just breaking. We headed for our caravan and after a meal my phone rang, it was Mark from York with the news of a possible Pallas’s Grasshopper Warbler near Chalk Bank!  We headed at great speed to the area until we saw the tide crossing the “road”. This was decision time, luckily our minds were made up for us by 4 vehicles coming in the opposite direction. Reversing in wet sand between sticks with vehicles pushing us along with the tide lapping at the doors certainly beats one or two of our exploits! The Spurn warden told us the bird would be trapped Saturday morning and its identity established. Time for the pub, now that all six of us were here, great to see you all. Met the warden and a few of the regulars in the “Crown & Anchor” and had a chat about the new arrivals etc. At 7-15am in the morning, we all headed for Chalk Bank area to see if the possible would turn into a definite. Around 8-30am and after seeing the bird in flight, the bird was captured and the expectancy could be felt, then the words,”Well that a mystery solved, it’s a Grasshopper Warbler”, at that point about 50 birders feelings went downhill rapidly!  Me and Bob wandered off and saw two Firecrests, what nice birds they are. Breakfast time for us all now. A walk to Beacon Lane pools was not to good and the sea did not reveal anything at all. A Red Breasted Flycatcher had been found in the church yard in Kilnsea and showed really well in bright sunshine, also, Firecrest, Pied Flycatcher. In the Canal Scrape a Jack Snipe was seen and a couple of Redstarts completed the days birding. Sunday was nice and sunny and we all walked to the churchyard and found Firecrest, Lesser Whitethroat (thanks Martin) and finally a Yellow Browed Warbler. Time to plan for the journey home and after our goodbye’s the Rochdale boys headed for Old Moor RSPB reserve. Upon reaching there, Bob revealed that his telescope was not in the car, were was it? Lots of people here but no sign of an American Golden Plover. Curlew Sandpiper and a few waders in amongst a lot of Golden Plover who earlier had been spooked by a Peregrine. Our last call was at Edderthorpe Flash, but nothing new was found. By this time, Bob had spoke to lots of people about his missing scope, but it was not found. We all got home by 5-30pm and all enjoyed the trip.

P.S. Bob returned to Spurn on Tuesday and guess what? He found his scope under the caravan curtains in the main room, result or what!

Dave O.


Well two weeks ago we had planned our annual trip to Anglesey, but, a certain Pacific Swift diverted us from going, so this Saturday the three elders of our group made the trip with Bob K driving. An early start was needed as a few stops had been planned so we left Rochdale at 6am. First stop was Holyhead harbour and as we got there the sun was trying to break out from behind the clouds. A Black Guillemot rather gave itself up to us at the side of a fishing boat and lots of pics were taken. A few other “tysties” were seen in the harbour and seen at nearly all other locations we visited during the day,they must be doing really well on Anglesey. Sandwich Tern

Choughs

Choughs, South Stack, Holyhead. 29th June 2013

Black Guillemot, Holyhead Harbour. 29th June 2013

Black Guillemot, Holyhead Harbour. 29th June 2013

Roseate Tern

Roseate Tern, Cemlyn Lagoon, Anglesey. 29th June 2013

South Stack next and a great joy to visit with the masses of seabirds perched facing the massive stacks. Lots of gulls, Guillemots, Razorbills, a few Puffins and passing on the sea quite a number of Manx Shearwater and an occasional Gannet. The ferries coming and going also give me and Steve B a gentle reminder about work! The small group of Chough also entertained us with their calls and sheer pleasure that they seem to get from flying around, their larger cousins the Ravens were also on patrol looking for anything to eat. There has been a lack of butterfly`s this year and next to none were seen in the day. The drive to Cemlyn Bay is always filled with anticipation and hoping that the tern colony is doing well and not like a few year’s ago when the lot were wiped out with predators. We came in from the east end and lots of terns were seen flying into the lagoon’s. Lots of Sandwich Tern’s a few Arctic Tern’s and Common Tern’s made up the breeding species.Black headed Gull, Oystercatcher were also breeding there. After taking a few pictures we noticed a Roseate Tern sat on the bricks on the edge of the colony, nice bird to see as they used to breed here. Around about this time a large female Peregrine “buzzed” the colony with everything that could fly taking to the air, quite a spectacle! It back tracked and swooped onto what we think was an Oystercatcher chick, carrying off the chick to become Peregrine chick food! A Common Rosefinch had been seen near to Point Lynas, were it had been singing almost all the time but only giving brief views. After a bit of a route march over gates, overgrown field’s etc, we reached the area. The bird could be heard, even though none of us were fitted with our hearing devices, that’s how audible it was. A small group headed nearer the bird and it gave a small perch up then flew down the valley. We all followed and apart from another flypast that was all we had on the bird. Hardly stunning and true to form. Another Roseate Tern had been showing on the River Clwyd just south of Rhyl, so as we were going that way to look at the Little Tern colony at Gronant, so we called in. As we arrived about 4 cars were there and birders, after we had parked they had all gone, the reason being so had the tern! We had a look anyway, lots of Sandwich Terns and about 6 summer plumaged Black tailed Godwit’s, what stunners! Time for Gronant and Presthaven Sands, the walk as always was only brightened up by a single Stonechat, but as we got onto the beach, at least a 100 Little Tern’s could be seen. Some on the sea fishing, others sat on nests or on the beach, quite a sight. The area is really well protected by fencing and a patrolling warden is in attendance, so the birds should produce lots of chicks. We believe it too be the only Little Tern colony on mainland Wales. Time for home now and a good day out, we all managed about 6 new birds for our year lists. Think its now time for the summer break. Oh no there’s a Bridled Tern on the Farne Islands!

Regards,
Dave O.


Not quite the words from the famous song, but it was that time of year again to undergo our, “nearly a day trip” to Norfolk. Only three brave souls aboard this year with Steve K driving, Chris B and myself leaving Newhey at 11-30pm. We reached our first stop, Dersingham Bog, near Sandringham around 3am with a full moon and a cloudless sky, the signs were good. We saw a Nightjar sat in the road either feeding or eating grit? and we were off to a good start. As we descended into the bog distant “churring” was heard and a Grasshopper Warbler was just warming up. A few Woodcocks were heard/seen and what sounded like deer gave the place a bit of an eerie feel to it! As we left another two Nightjars were seen in the road and as the first vestiges of light came through no sign of the Golden Pheasants on the triangle. Next stop Foulden Common, a place I saw/ heard my very first Nightingale about 25 years ago, but alas no birds were heard in our search. A nice Barn Owl was perched up for us though. At Weeting Heath a blanket of low lying mist hampered our search for Stone Curlew, Chris found a Spotted Flycatcher and then the bird we had come to see as a Stone Curlew walked out of the mist. Now onto everyone’s favorite reserve, RSPB Lakenheath Fen. It seems like a long time ago that this place was owned by Bryant & May for growing the tree’s that would be turned into matchsticks and that Golden Oriole’s were fairly easy to see. Now it has been transformed into a really cracking reserve with practically any type of marsh bird being seen. We arrived at 5-30am and already the car park held 10 cars on it. We trudged our way along the riverbank and soon heard the “dawn chorus” in full swing with Cetti’s Warbler to the fore. We reached the far end of the reserve and watched a couple of Marsh Harriers, then the news of the Red Footed Falcon male being perched up about 250 yards away, so, off we went. A pair of Mute Swan’s and 5 cygnets barred our way, but a patient walk around them did the trick! The Red Footed Falcon was indeed perched up and was admired for 15 minutes, a new bird for one of our number. We walked back along the river and watched a Common Crane gracefully feeding on the Norfolk side of the river. We agreed to have another look at the falcon, just as a Golden Oriole began to sing its very distinctive song. Two Hobbies were found sat in the same area as the falcon and a few long flights by the local Bittern’s were also enjoyed. A small group of birders were looking into the reed’s and told us that a Savi’s Warbler was singing. It sung some more then showed itself to the small gathering. What a cracking marsh bird and in the company of a sat out “reeling”, Grasshopper Warbler, nice to be able to compare the respective songs. This was another new bird for one of our team. A call in at Barnham Common for possible Woodlark had, nothing more than the following butterflies:-Small Copper, Small Heath, Green Veined White, Brimstone (pair). Time to head for the coast, reaching the “Iron Road” at Salthouse were we saw:-Egyptian Goose, Common & Sandwich Terns and a dodgy looking Ruddy Shelduck. Onto the east bank at Cley were a Wood Sandpiper showed very nicely and a couple of Bearded Tits were “pinging” and flying around. At Titchwell we saw a Red Crested Pochard and a Temminck’s Stint, fairly close to the new hide. Grey Plover, Little Tern and a few more waders were seen in very pleasant conditions. We had to leave Norfolk now as time was pressing as a call at Whisby Nature Reserve was planned to catch up with the Nightingale that could not be found in Norfolk. We reached Whisby at 7pm and walked straight into a singing Nightingale, that gave us a good rendition before heading deeper into cover. The last bird on this trip anf a fitting end to a really memorable trip.We reached Newhey at 9-30pm having seen a total of 107 species and each of us having had around 20 new species for our year lists.

Regards,

Dave O.


Having missed out on a Pallid Harrier last year in Teeside, on the day that a certain football team shipped 6 goals to the eventual champions. We thought that a trip to Patrington Haven, Yorkshire would be in order. It’s a good job that we already have Pallid Harrier on our list, because we were again, unsuccessful. It was just me and Bob K that made the trip with the rest of the A team indisposed. We arrived with no news about the harrier on a bitterly cold “spring” morning, it was more like the middle of December. Much searching revealed 3 Marsh Harriers, Whitethroat, Reed & Sedge Warblers, Cuckoo and an impressive array of waders with the Grey Plovers looking quite spectacular in the spring finest. A small flock of Brent Geese also graced the haven. After a couple of hours in the freezer we headed back to the car. We went to Spurn to follow up on a report of a Golden Oriole. The bird was soon located as it flew out of a bush that also held a caterpillar catching Cuckoo, the Oriole flew from the Canal Scrape area towards Beacon Lane. We had another go for it along Beacon Lane and the bird again gave fairly close flight views across a rape seed field, the yellow colours were quite splendid! We left the Spurn area and had another go for the Harrier, but, as we arrived we were told about a male Red Backed Shrike north of Easington Lagoons. Back to Spurn then. We used a short cut to the north of the area and we had great sightings of the first year male Red Backed Shrike. Two Little Terns then flew just behind us and landed in the sandy area and we got some pictures of them. A final look at Kilnsea and an Egyptian Goose along with the Greylag Geese was a nice bird to catch up with, We headed for home Pallid Harrierless, again, but we picked up about 8 year ticks each. Hope the weather gets better?

Dave O.


Wife wanted a holiday/break in England this year. So I book a 5 day break in Grt Yarmouth, Kensington Hotel (can’t fault our stay here). Weeks of planning and research to be done. When we was at Flamborough Head, we met some cool guys from Yarmouth who gave me their web-site which I was greatful for fresh information of Birds about East Anglia – http://yarevalleywildlife.synthasite.com/ Thanks got to them boys.

Ozzy produced 2 books from his library – Where to watch Birds in East Anglia – Clark, P&M (Helm). and Best birdwatching sites in Norfolk – Glenn N. (Buckingham Press). I must say that Neil Glenn’s book was a fantastic read and help. The layout is simple and truely enjoyable covering 73 sites, each with a Likely birds to see feature, Maps and directions. I wish ALL guides and Web sites follow this format. I thoroughly recommend this a Must read if you are planning a trip to Norfolk.

Anyway Thursday 9:45  Blastoff to ASDA for a Full-Monty Breakfast, then with a Joe Bonamassa Favourites CD compilation set to 11 we are finally on our way to Rutland Water. Easy Osprey to begin the list.

Osprey from the Web Cam.

Highlights for the list included – Yellowhamnmers, Corn Buntings, Whitethroat, Common Terns, Green Woodpeckers, Sedge Warblers.

Birds Enroute – Not far from the reserve we pass under a Red-Kite. Buzzards, Sparrowhawks.

Friday 18th: 5am Yarmouth beach Little Terns and  Sandwich Terns all flying past, Ringed Plover on the beach. No sighting of the cert Med. Gulls. Dumping machines (dogs) all ready on the beach, now’t much else about (no Black Redstarts too). Back to the Kensington for 8am Breakfast, then blast off south to Landguard, Suffolk. It’s my first time here, and a possible lifer – Serin. Not many birders here. I was told that if I find the Linnets, look carefully amongst them to see the bird. I found every bush held flocks of Linnet, but didn’t see the Serin. Other birds seen included – Wheatears, Whitethroats.

Little Tern

Minsmere – Highlights, Two Stone Curlews, Cettis’ Warbler, Bittern in flight, Marsh Harriers.

Saturday 19th – A shopping day in Norwich – enjoyable. Later Strumpshaw Fen, A first for me . Each morning, about 5:30 am a Savi’s Warbler can be seen/heard (A lifer, if I could get up, that is), Cuckoo’s calling, Every bush seemed to have a Cettis ready to burst your ear drums. Little Grebes and Reed Warblers  loads of Marsh Harriers again.

Sunday 20th  – Another morning in bed, I blame that strong apple juice the sell at the bar..Hic!.. Lakenheath – love the new visitors centre. A clockwise route taken. 2 Male Golden Orioles seen, Cuckoo’s calling, Bearded Tits, all seen before we got to the bird screen. From the screen we saw 3 low flying Bittern’s 2 Egyptian goose. A record number of 30 Hobbies seen for here yesterday – I saw none. Continueing in a clock-wise direction. beyond the back of the Oriole popular platation, we look over a reedy area and see 2 adult Common Cranes with a newly hatched chick.

Common Crane – Lakenheath RSPB

Other birds of note – Whopper Swan (Injured), 2 male Garganeys.

Weeting Heath – Stone Curlews – not much else.

Stone Curlew – Weeting Heath

Santon Downham, St. Helens car park – Tree Pipit, Garden warblers, Yellowhammers a plenty, but Crossbills are everywhere!!

Crossbill – Santon Downham

Monday  – Home trip – Last chance for the Savi’s Failed to get up, blame the paralysis in my legs (apple juice again). Enroute – Golden Pheasant b ythe road Nr. Swanton Morley stunning male – Dead!…. Shame.

Frampton RSPB – a first for me. I like this fairly new reserve. Black winged stilt and Black Terns have buggerd off. still got these – Curlew Sandpipers 7, Little Stint 2, Black Neck Grebe, Black tailed Godwits, Brent Geese a bazillion, Avocet, Turnstone, Common Sandpiper, more male Garganeys, Yellowhammers, Corn Buntings.

874 miles from the Thursday blast off and we return home for 5:pm – Papped out!! and overdosed on birds. All equipment put away for a few days, I hope.

Thanks to Ozzy for the invaluable books and the guys from Yare Valley for their information too.


Its our most looked forward to trip of the year, our annual trip to Norfolk. The trip itself was spoilt a bit by the strong winds that were blowing, and not all coming from me!(Ozzy!) We began at Salthouse Heath were a couple of Nightjars were heard and then seen, but the first of many disapointments was in the shape of no Nightingales not being heard on the heath at all (this was the first time ever that we have failed to hear them here). At Salthouse we picked up Egyptian Goose then the bit I really like the East Bank at Cley a couple of Bearded Tits, Spoonbill, Sandwich, Common and Little Terns were seen. The Glaven valley had a cracking Barn Owl. A trip to the Monty`s place was a wash out, we also didn’t connect with the Quails at Choosely Barns also. Hoping for better things at Titchwell we had really close veiws of a Bittern that kept flying over the footpath and giving us all prolonged sightings. Time to head for the Brecks and one of the best reserve`s in Norfolk, Lakenheath or Hockwold Washes? No sign of the Golden Oriole`s, missed the Cranes by seconds but a couple of Hobbies and lots of Marsh Harriers kept us entertained, we had not seen Turtle Dove anywhere and didn’t manage to see them here, also even with a good tip off from a reliable friend. Our last port of call was to see the Stone Curlew at a secret location (so we didn’t have to spend any of our precious money – Tight Northerners and that) we were successful, but didn’t connect with any Wood Larks. One highspot on the way home was of a Red Kite, in the Yorkshire area. A long day, but not one of our better trips! Ozzy managed to 93 species, which included 12 year ticks, that puts him on 173 species for 2011.