Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Titchwell RSPB Nature Reserve

Leaving work on Friday, a check on BirdGuides revealed a report of a Hoopoe back in my home town of Kilmarnock in Ayrshire. Nobody would seriously consider traveling 400 miles for a Hoopoe in the British Isles – they are not that rare after all. But what about one a stones throw away from a former local patch? Still a bit silly, and a needless, extra burden on the environment, but tempting nonetheless. In any case, it was never seen again. This overshooting drift migrant was probably grounded by that crazy thunderstorm a few nights ago and was glad to leave its temporary home of Kilmarnock Cemetery when the fine weather returned. The Hoopoe is probably my favourite bird and one nearby at, my other former local patch, Northcraig Reservoir on 9-10 May 1999 must rank as the best.

Anyway getting back on track, this weekend I was visiting my sister and brother-in-law in Cambridge and they kindly gave me a lift to Titchwell on the north Norfolk Coast. This is one of the finest RSPS nature reserves in southern England and despite the bad weather we managed to see 77 species from the two main hides without trying too hard. We didn’t even make it to the sea which would have notched up a few more. Nothing too unusual around, apart from the elusive Purple Heron, but Temminck’s Stint, Bearded Reedling, Whimbrel, Spotted Redshank, Little Tern, Cetti’s Warbler, Little Stint, Garganey, and the dozens of Avocets and passage waders made for a great day.

Left my long lens at home so below are a selection of mainly phonescoped images with the Nokia 6280 and Kowa 821. First two are DSLR shots however (the difference in quality is obvious though).

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