A frustrating day's birding. I headed out towards Walsey Hills NOA this morning to see the RB Shrike which had been reported present at 07:48 hours this morning on BG. The morning was chilly but sunny and pleasant, I drove up towards Cley with the roof down and Van the Man (Van Morrison that is) on the car stereo! But by the time I got to Walsey the wind had picked up and there had been no sign of the bird for over an hour and a half. I stayed around for a short while before deciding to try somewhere else.
Rather than go to the hides at Cley I drove towards Wells Wood. This was more of a reconnaissance trip than anything else. Come some good easterlies in October, this place will be well worth checking. Not having been there before, I wanted to get my bearings. But it was simply crawling with people and dogs, plus the wind had picked up. A Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker and two Jays were the best I had. After thirty minutes I was thoroughly fed up, I called it a day and headed back to the car.
My next stop was to be Titchwell RSPB but looking west, the clouds seemed very dark and the wind was strengthening. Plus the RB Shrike was been reported again at Walsey Hills. What to do?
I headed back towards Walsey. I stopped off briefly at Cley Spy and got some good advise about my sick Kowa scope.
Back at Walsey though there was no sign of the Shrike.....double dip! In order to salvage something from the day I walked along the East Bank at Cley and towards the hide on the north scrape. I stopped at Arnold's Marsh and scanned through the waders, mainly Dunlin, Redshank, one Ringed Plover and several Black 'wits.
I had a single Wheatear about halfway along the North Norfolk Coast Path, the wind was really strong now, from the south west it seemed. At the hide, the main body of smalls were disappointingly distant. I scanned with a scope and could manage to pick out at least two if not three juvenile Curlew Sandpipers and four Little Stints. Ticks for my British list at least, but way too distant for photos.
On the way back I tried a brief sea-watch, but the wind was all wrong, the best I had was two Sanderling, one Red-throated Diver and a Sandwich Tern. I thought about trying for the Snow Bunting reported from the beach car park at Cley, but by now I'd had enough.