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Saturday, 26 July 2014

Long-tailed Skua!

Long-tailed Skua, adult, Titchwell, Norfolk
 
I had such a struggle to drag myself out of my pit this morning. Boy! am I glad I did.
I decided to go to Titchwell. I had heard that there were a lot of waders on the Fresh Marsh. I got there about 7am and headed for the hides. It was misty and cool but refreshing after  the stifling heat of recent days.
There were a large number of waders visible: Green, Wood and Common Sandpipers plus Little Ringed Plover, Whimbrel and Greenshank. There were several other species in their red / orange (and black) Summer plumage such as Spotted Redshank, Knot, Little Stint, Bar-tailed Godwit and Curlew Sandpiper. Several Spoonbills and juvenile Red-crested Pochards added to the variety.
By this time I had joined up with a friend and as we crossed over the sea wall to the Tidal Marsh we were amazed to see an adult Long-tailed Skua gliding toward us over Thornham Marsh. It was lost to view toward Brancaster after 5 minutes but 4 Arctic Skuas appeared over Thornham Marsh immediately after.
We headed to the beach. Lots of waders and gulls on the beach but only a single Eider visible on the sea. Amazingly the Long-tailed Skua was rediscovered sitting on the Tidal Marsh. It sat there for a few minutes before relocating to the beach, well above the high tide mark.
DH and I got a little closer before a Kestrel sent the Skua packing. It was seen to fly West toward Thornham Point before heading off toward Lincolnshire across The Wash.
Long-tailed Skua, Titchwell, Norfolk
Red-crested Pochard, juveniles, Titchwell
Skylark, juvenile, Titchwell
Knot, Titchwell
 
 
 



Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Fantastic Flitcham

Oncocera semirubella (Rosy-striped Knot-horn), Flitcham
 
Loads of rare things flying about this week. A huge thank you to Penny, whose text "MEGA!! Great Knot at Breydon Water", got me from King's Lynn to Great Yarmouth in record time. A bit of a trek in my work clothes (a suit) but a nice first.
D.J. and I did a moth trap on private land at Flitcham on Saturday. So many great Moths and a few good birds to boot. While we were setting the traps up we could hear the sound of half a dozen Quail calling from the nearby fields. We were extremely fortunate to see two of them run across the track in front of us. We also nailed four Owl species that night. Little Owl and Barn Owl on the way to the site and Tawny Owl plus a Long-eared Owl seen by the light of the MV traps.
As for the moths, well it was nothing short of awesome. Take a look below.
Oncocera semirubella (Rosy-striped Knot-horn), Flitcham. Only the 4th record in Norfolk since 1995. A first for West Norfolk (VC28)
Agonopterix kaekeritziana (Straw Flat-body) Flitcham. The 5th Norfolk record since 2002.
Marbled Clover, Flitcham (Red Data Book)
Royal Mantle, Flitcham. Probably as far North as this moth comes.
Ethmia dodecea (Dotted Ermel), Flitcham
Phtheochroa rugosana (Rough-winged Conch), Flitcham
Hypsopygia glaucinalis (Double-striped Tabby), Flitcham
Ypsolopha parenthesella (White-shouldered Smudge), Flitcham
Hornet Moths, Shipdham (taken with phone)