Saturday 11 May 2024

Yorkshire trip 7- 10th May 2024

Male Marsh harrier

Sites Visited:

  • Bempton Cliffs RSPB Reserve.
  • Flamborough Head
  • Filey Dams Yorkshire Wildlife Reserve
  • Filey Brigg
  • Wykeham Forest Raptor Watchpoint
  • Rosedale, North York Moors.
  • Tophill Low, Yorkshire Wildlife Reserve
  • Burton Riggs, Yorkshire Wildlife Reserve
  • North Cave Wetland, Yorkshire Wildlife Reserve.
  • Blacktoft Sands, RSPB Reserve
Distance driven: 720 miles
Distance walked:  33.6 miles
Based in a guest house in Bridlington. £128 for the 3 nights. 

Garden Warbler (North Cave)

 Species list:

  1. Mute swan
  2. Greylag Goose
  3. Canada goose
  4. Shelduck (Filey Dams)
  5. Mallard
  6. Gadwall
  7. Shoveler
  8. Wigeon (Tophill Low)
  9. Teal (Tophill Low)
  10. Pochard (North Cave)
  11. Tufted duck
  12. Red Grouse (Rosedale)
  13. Red legged partridge (Bempton)
  14. Grey Partridge (Bempton)
  15. Red throated diver (Flamborough Head)
  16. Little grebe (Blacktoft Sands)
  17. Great crested grebe (Tophill Low)
  18. Fulmar (Bempton)
  19. Gannet (Bempton)
  20. Cormorant (Tophill Low)
  21. Shag (Flamborough Head)
  22. Bittern (heard, Blacktoft Sands)
  23. Little egret (Tophill Low)
  24. Grey heron
  25. Spoonbill (Blacktoft Sands)
  26. Red kite (A1)
  27. Marsh Harrier (Blacktoft Sands)
  28. Common buzzard
  29. Kestrel
  30. Hobby (North Cave)
  31. Moorhen
  32. Coot
  33. Oystercatcher
  34. Avocet (North Cave)
  35. Little ringed plover (Tophill Low)
  36. Lapwing (Rosedale)
  37. Turnstone (Bridlington beach)
  38. Redshank (Rosedale)
  39. Curlew (Rosedale)
  40. Black headed gull
  41. Herring gull
  42. Common gull (Filey Brigg)
  43. Lesser black backed gull (Filey Dams)
  44. Greater black backed gull (Filey Dams)
  45. Kittiwake (Bempton)
  46. Common tern (Tophill Low)
  47. White winged black tern (North Cave)
  48. Puffin (Bempton)
  49. Guillemot (Bempton)
  50. Razorbill (Bempton)
  51. Stock dove (Bempton)
  52. Wood pigeon
  53. Collared dove
  54. Feral Rock doves (Bempton)
  55. Cuckoo (heard, (Tophill Low)
  56. Short eared owl (Bempton)
  57. Tawny Owl (Bridlington)
  58. Barn Owl (Bempton)
  59. Swift (Filey Brigg)
  60. Green woodpecker (Wykeham Forest)
  61. Great spotted woodpecker (Tophill Low)
  62. Skylark
  63. Sand martin (Filey Brigg)
  64. Swallow
  65. House martin
  66. Meadow pipit
  67. Pied wagtail
  68. Dunnock
  69. Robin
  70. Wheatear (Rosedale)
  71. Stonechat (Filey Brigg)
  72. Song thrush
  73. Mistle thrush
  74. Blackbird
  75. Garden warbler (North Cave)
  76. Blackcap
  77. Whitethroat
  78. Sedge warbler
  79. Cetti's warbler
  80. Reed warbler
  81. Willow warbler
  82. Chiffchaff
  83. Goldcrest (Tophill Low)
  84. Firecrest (Bempton)
  85. Wren
  86. Great tit
  87. Blue tit
  88. Willow Tit (Wykeham Forest)
  89. Coal tit (Wykeham Forest)
  90. Long tailed tit
  91. Magpie
  92. Jay
  93. Jackdaw
  94. Carrion crow
  95. Rook
  96. Starling
  97. House sparrow
  98. Tree sparrow (Bempton)
  99. Chaffinch
  100. Linnet
  101. Goldfinch
  102. Greenfinch
  103. Bullfinch (Wykeham Forest)
  104. Reed bunting
  105. Corn Bunting (heard, Bempton, seen in lanes around Tophill Low)
  106. Yellowhammer
Willow warbler

Common terns and a wigeon

Little ringed plover

Dreadful record shot of the rare White-winged Black Tern

Little egret

Grey heron

male Blackbird

Jackdaw suffering from feather mites around the eye.




Barn owl


Flamborough Head




Sand martins

Tree sparrow

Bempton Cliffs


two Canada goose ganders, territorial dispute.

The vanquished......

.......and the victor

Filey beachfront from the top of Filey Brigg


Linnet, male

Linnet, female

Canada goslings

Meadow pipit

Sand martin


Thursday 28 March 2024

Species list: Norfolk 27.03.24

 Sites visited:

Kelling Heath

Cley East Bank

Cley Reserve hides

Warham Greens

Choseley Barns

Titchwell reserve.

  1. Mute swan
  2. Greylag goose
  3. Canada goose
  4. Brent goose
  5. Shelduck
  6. Egyptian goose
  7. Mallard
  8. Gadwall
  9. Pintail
  10. Shoveler
  11. Wigeon
  12. Teal
  13. Pochard
  14. Common scoter (Titchwell beach)
  15. Red breasted merganser (Titchwell)
  16. Pheasant
  17. Red-legged partridge
  18. Great crested grebe
  19. Cormorant
  20. Little egret
  21. Great white egret (Titchwell)
  22. Grey heron
  23. Red kite
  24. Marsh harrier
  25. Common buzzard
  26. Kestrel
  27. Moorhen
  28. Coot
  29. Oystercatcher
  30. Avocet
  31. Little ringed plover (Cley)
  32. Ringed plover
  33. Grey plover
  34. Lapwing
  35. Sanderling
  36. Turnstone
  37. Dunlin
  38. Ruff
  39. Redshank
  40. Greenshank
  41. Black tailed godwit
  42. Curlew
  43. Snipe
  44. Long-billed dowitcher (Cley)
  45. Black headed gull
  46. Common gull
  47. Mediterranean gull (Titchwell)
  48. Herring gull
  49. Lesser black backed gull
  50. Wood pigeon
  51. Collared dove
  52. Skylark
  53. Wood lark (Kelling Heath)
  54. Meadow pipit
  55. Pied wagtail
  56. Dunnock
  57. Robin
  58. Wheatear (Kelling)
  59. Stonechat (Kelling Heath)
  60. Blackbird
  61. Blackcap (heard)
  62. Dartford warbler (Kelling Heath)
  63. Cetti's warbler (heard)
  64. Chiffchaff
  65. Wren
  66. Great tit
  67. Blue tit
  68. Long tailed tit
  69. Bearded reedling (heard) Cley
  70. Magpie
  71. Jay
  72. Jackdaw
  73. Carrion crow
  74. Rook
  75. Starling
  76. House sparrow
  77. Chaffinch
  78. Linnet
  79. Goldfinch
  80. Greenfinch
  81. Reed bunting
Long-billed dowitcher with Black tailed godwit

Wednesday 14 February 2024

Species List: Norfolk 13th - 14th Feb

 Places visited:

Lynford Aboretum

Snettisham RSPB

Titchwell RSPB

Choseley Drying Barns

Brancaster Harbour

Kelling Heath

Cley East Bank

Cley Beach

Holkham, Lady Anne's Drive.

North Point Pools, Wells Next the Sea

Welney WWT

The Fens.

Species seen and heard. More unusual species, site noted.

  1. Mute Swan
  2. Bewick's Swan (Welney)
  3. Whooper Swan (The Fens)
  4. Pink Footed Goose
  5. Greylag goose
  6. Canada Goose
  7. Brent goose
  8. Shelduck
  9. Egyptian Goose
  10. Mallard
  11. Gadwall
  12. Pintail (Titchwell and Cley)
  13. Shoveler
  14. Wigeon
  15. Teal
  16. Pochard
  17. Scaup (Welney)
  18. Tufted Duck
  19. Common scoter (Titchwell)
  20. Long Tailed duck (Snettisham)
  21. Goldeneye (Snettisham)
  22. Red breasted merganser (Titchwell beach)
  23. Pheasant
  24. Red Legged partridge
  25. Grey Partridge (Choseley)
  26. Great crested grebe
  27. Cormorant
  28. Cattle egret (Welney)
  29. Little egret
  30. Grey heron
  31. Red Kite
  32. Marsh Harrier
  33. Hen Harrier (Titchwell)
  34. Common buzzard
  35. Kestrel
  36. Water Rail (Titchwell)
  37. Moorhen
  38. Coot
  39. Oystercatcher
  40. Avocet
  41. Ringed Plover
  42. Golden Plover
  43. Lapwing
  44. Knot (Snettisham)
  45. Sanderling (Titchwell)
  46. Turnstone
  47. Dunlin
  48. Redshank
  49. Spotted Redshank (Titchwell)
  50. Black tailed godwit
  51. Bar tailed godwit
  52. Curlew
  53. Black headed gull
  54. Common gull
  55. Mediterranean Gull (Titchwell)
  56. Herring gull
  57. Lesser black backed gull
  58. Great black backed gull
  59. Stock Dove (Welney)
  60. Wood pigeon
  61. Collared dove
  62. Green woodpecker (Holkham)
  63. Skylark
  64. Woodlark (Kelling Heath)
  65. Meadow pipit
  66. Water Pipit (North Point Pools)
  67. Dunnock
  68. Robin
  69. Wren
  70. Song Thrush
  71. Fieldfare
  72. Blackbird
  73. Cettis Warbler (heard)
  74. Goldcrest
  75. Great tit
  76. Blue tit
  77. Coal tit
  78. Long tailed tit
  79. Marsh Tit (heard, Lynford Arboretum)
  80. Treecreeper (Lynford Arboretum)
  81. Magpie
  82. Jackdaw
  83. Carrion Crow
  84. Rook
  85. Starling
  86. House Sparrow
  87. Tree Sparrow (Welney)
  88. Chaffinch
  89. Brambling (Lynford and Titchwell)
  90. Linnet
  91. Goldfinch
  92. Siskin (Lynford)
  93. Bullfinch (Kelling Heath)
  94. Reed Bunting
  95. Yellowhammer (Lynford Arboretum)

This is me

This is me
At the end of another Norfolk Coastal footpath walk. 47 miles, 3 days 99 species of bird. September 2009

Caley Wood view

Caley Wood view
sunshine through the canopy 29.05.08

A walk along the Warta Valley, Poznan, Poland. Feb 2007

A walk along the Warta Valley, Poznan, Poland. Feb 2007
Best birds on this walk: black and middle spotted woodpecker and short toed treecreeper

About Me

My photo
A primary school teacher for 30 years, I retired from teaching in July 2009 to set up my own science enhancement and communication company. The Primary Works offers science clubs, workshops and staged science shows nationwide. I have always been interested in bird watching since my early years. Apparently my first tick was after inquiring about a chaffinch and then receiving the Observer book of birds. By the age of 9 I had moved on to Tory Peterson's collins guide and was now involved on YOC birding holidays to Northumbria, Essex coast, Slimbridge and Yorkshire. My twitching rule is that I will willingly travel 1km for each gram the bird weighs. However, I have had many rarities just by being in the right place. I have travelled widely throughout Europe and also visited Australia and Sri Lanka. In 2016 I spent time at Portland Bird Obs and two trips to Aviero, Portugal. 2017 found me back in Sri Lanka in Feb/March, then July and back for New Year's Eve celebrations in December. Also returned to The Camargue in May for a 4 day trip. Few plans for 2018, but nothing yet booked apart from a trip to the IOW.

Grey heron

Grey heron
Over the allotment 28.09.08

Southern Hawker

Southern Hawker
Ridge footpath 27.08.08

Juvenile green woodpecker (17.08.08)

Juvenile green woodpecker (17.08.08)
Note the stripes, denoting a bird fledged this year.

common blue

common blue
Ash Valley G.C. 15.08.08

Indian balsam (impatiens glandulifera)

Indian balsam (impatiens glandulifera)
River Ash

azure damselfly

azure damselfly
River Ash 28.07.08

marbled white

marbled white
Discovered at Westland Green 22.07.08

ruddy darter

ruddy darter
Bush Wood 21.07.08

honeysuckle 19.07.08

honeysuckle 19.07.08
growing in hedgerow in Chapel Lane

cinnabar moth caterpillar

cinnabar moth caterpillar
Photographed on ragwort 19.07.08


Study of petals 11.06.08

male yellowhammer

male yellowhammer

common blue butterfly

common blue butterfly

River Ash

River Ash
looking south from the bridge at Hadham Ford

Common poppy (papaver rhoeas)

Common poppy (papaver rhoeas)
in rape field 29.05.08

Caley Wood sunshine

Caley Wood sunshine

Millenium Wood fox

Millenium Wood fox

common comfrey (symphytum officinale)

common comfrey (symphytum officinale)
06.05.08 banks of the River Ash

Garlic Mustard or Jack by the Hedge,(Alliara petiolata)

Garlic Mustard or Jack by the Hedge,(Alliara petiolata)
flowers, leaves and fruit edible . Good in salad and pesto

April showers

April showers
Double rainbow 30.04.08

Caley Wood bluebells

Caley Wood bluebells

Yellow Archangel

Yellow Archangel
Chapel Lane (20.04.08)

sunlight 16.04.08

sunlight 16.04.08
looking south west from Bush Wood

snowy buds

snowy buds
06.04.08 in Bush Wood

Looking north west

Looking north west
05.04.08 evening shower approaching

Back Garden

Back Garden
Easter Sunday (23.03.08)

Brick Kiln Hill

Brick Kiln Hill
Looking east (23.03.08)

No play today

No play today
The 2nd hole at Ash Valley golf course

Teasel head

Teasel head
Bush Wood (21.03.08)


daffodils at Bush Wood pond (21.03.08)

Swollen River Ash

Swollen River Ash
The river at the bottom of Winding Hill 16.03.08

Daybreak over the chapel

Daybreak over the chapel
Thursday 13th March

Wild daffodils (narcissus pseudonarcissus)

Wild daffodils (narcissus pseudonarcissus)
growing in Bush Wood

January snowdrops

January snowdrops
Banks of River Ash, north of Much Hadham

Good Moon

Good Moon
From garden 24.01.08

Village Green

Village Green
Looking east towards Acremore Street

Looking south before Hadham Ford

Looking south before Hadham Ford
rare January blue sky

Useful sites

The following are some useful websites that may interest readers of this blog.
Firstly, Bishop's Stortford Natural History Society

Fellow birder, Gary Whelan's blog. Gives reports from our trips out together plus reports from his trips abroad. The official herts bird club website. Frequently updated, listing bird sightings around the county. Offers links to many other websites. Both of these sites also offer links to yahoo discussion groups. An international site. You can enter as a guest but become a member( free) to post comments, bird sightings and just about anything to do with wild birds. Good news updates, classified section for binoculars, cameras etc. A new site set up where you can contact people worldwide who will help you find good birds in their country. UK section being set up presently.
Fellow birders blog. Strtford resident, Graeme Smith regulary birds the area south of Stortford as well as around Spellbrook and the River Stort from Spellbrook to Twyford Locks. Some superb bird photography: Graeme uses a digital camera attached to his powerful telescope to get detailled images of the birds he sees. Well worth a browse.
Two local sites that may be of interest can be found at

South Easterly walk

South Easterly walk
black, normal, red extended walk

South Westerly route.

South Westerly route.
Black usual, red extended

North Easterly walk

North Easterly walk
black short, walk. Red, extended

North West Patch

North West Patch
black route regular. Red route the extended wander