Sunday, February 26, 2012

East of Wells again Feb 17-24

We set off at 0640 to look for the Arctic redpoll. As we passed Salthouse a Barn Owl silently glided across the road but we were not to be distracted from our initial goal. It was very quiet when we arrived at Kelling, so we tried not to disturb any of the locals. Jackdaws and blackbirds were first at the breakfast table with a few goldfinches and a dunnock joining later. We did not have to wait long for the redpolls to arrive. As the previous day several lesser redpoll and the occasional mealy consumed the nyjer seed with gusto. Suddenly it was there, a slightly larger bird, but so much white on it, made it unmistakeable. It was time to return to the YHA for porridge and toast.

A quick visit to the beach at Salthouse to enjoy snow buntings, and a careful drive past Cley enabled us to see another Barn Owl sitting on a post on the reserve side of the road. After our late breakfast it was time to go to Lynford Arboretum. The journey was a fruitful one for my challenge. I saw grey partridge, ground ivy in flower and a tree I hadn't recognised before - a walnut

It was a warm sunny day and on arriving at our destination it did not take too long to see hawfinch. There were a couple of bonuses here as well. A Firecrest singing near the car park and a few crossbills continued to make our day special. The most unexpected sighting was of a Red Admiral, my first butterfly of the year. Even with these newer sightings, I continued to enjoy the other wildlife around. There were lots of suicidal pheasant, ( I didn't oblige) several brown hares, lots of geese, a few skulking Red Legged partridge and even a house sparrow or two. The best thing about the middle of the week was Shrove Tuesday. I enjoy making pancakes but even more, I enjoy eating them.  

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