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Mega Trip To Norfolk

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We had waited a long time for everything to fall into place regarding our Norfolk trip. I was keeping a promise to pay the barer of a birthday card stating his present was a trip to Norfolk for his birthday, he is now 58… it was his 50th when the promised was made.

We set off on Friday morning quite early and our plan was to bird all day starting in Snettisham. Curving our way around the coast until we ended up at our Airbnb, on a farm in Morston, near Morston Quay, a wonderful place to bird.

We got to Snettisham and although cold the sky was bright enough and we knew it was going to be a good weekend. We had not had time to look at the tides until we got in the car we had both been that busy and it wasn't in our favour. But who cares, we were free to bird all weekend, our wives had given us passes out.

We were met by thousands of geese of all denominations as we neared the entrance to Snettisham and a height barrier but even with my roof rack on I knew we would be ok as I had been to Snettisham on New Years day. We spent from Boxing Day to New Years in Sandringham. Height barrier negotiated and into the car park where we met Linnets, lots of Linnets and a few Bull Finches but I was unable to get good enough shots of them due to their social shyness.
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Above: Linnet, in the bushes in the car park, there was quite a lot and quite accommodating posing for photographs.

Left: Long lens shot of a Little Egret.
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Above: Brent Geese and Below: Stonechat keeps an eye on us as we approach.
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Below are a few shots from Cley beach.

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"I'm not afraid of you" said this Black Headed Gull, in fact we were able to get so close it was rather silly.

It eventually flew to the ground and walked around our boots then flew off .

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I think Starlings look rather amazing at this time of year. All pristine and brand new, there was some large social groups all chattering away on the footpaths down to the beach at Cley We all do it! Walking past Starling that is, or making comments like "Its only a Starling" but look again at this rather magnificent bird. Iridescent, colourful and striking the Starling struts its stuff all over the world and not many take any notice.

That is until they have a rather wonderful gathering called a murmuration. Then, everyone notices as these dancers in the sky murmurate without music and mesmerise onlookers with their performance.
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Above: Wigeon ranges across the Palaearctic and is occasionally found in the Nearctic regions. 

Below: Distant Marsh Harrier, there was a noticeable number of Harrier in Norfolk as there is in Yorkshire.
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It was not very long before this Buzzard had attracted the attention of a Crow and as we know Crows do not respect size or strength, they just attack. This Buzzard was mobbed for several minutes until it was a long way away from the Crows nesting area.

We thought It was a little too early in the season to have large flocks of Avocet, but happily we were wrong. They are always a joy to watch "air dancing" in the cool breeze.
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Above: Common Buzzard
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Above and below: Ruff
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We were getting Birdguides news and pager reports that there was a small flock of Shore Lark on Holkham beach, but the birds were elusive and at a distance. It was quite a yomp to where the birds were but on the way we were treated to Snow Bunting, Skylarks and Rock and Meadow Pipits in significant quantities, some pics below. Although I have presented you with some dodgy photographs above, the Shorelark images are not down to my terrible camera skills but heat haze.

Shore Larks are difficult to find and difficult to photograph but they do have behaviour patterns and once you know them they get easier to see.
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Below: Skylarks, there were flocks of them and a first for me, I usually see two or three but in this instance 50 - 60.
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Above: Skylark and Meadow pipit.
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Above: Buzzard and Below: Grey Partridge.
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Above: Pied Wagtail.
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Above Shoveler.
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Above: Northern Pintail.
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Above and below our beautiful Curlew
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Above: Spotted Redshank
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Above: Golden Plover
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Above: Grey Plover

My List for the weekend.

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