Get up at 5am they said, go looking for migrants on the east Norfolk coast they said......nuts to that!
After several days of high pressure and light easterly winds I figured Saturday morning would be good for early migrants. I was in bed by 9.30pm and up at 5am. By 6.30am I was parking up at Horsey Gap brim full of optimism. A White-spotted Bluethroat would be found, showing well along the path or in the Sallows. An hour later I was trudging dejectedly back to the car with not even a Wheatear to show for my troubles. The best at Horsey was a singing Chiffchaff, a female-type Marsh Harrier and a fly-over Grey Plover.
At Horsey Mere a nice male Marsh Harrier flew over clutching a poor unfortunate rodent of some description. A Black Redstart was reported from the south dunes at Winterton 'in oaks'........I searched in vain, just some nice male Yellowhammers. At the Shangri-La cottage there were more singing Chiffers but little else, I would try Sea Palling.........some day that will surely hold something good. I checked the little cottages at the back of the dunes and apart from a singing Chiffer I had nothing there also. I really expected that I might get a Black Redstart at Sea Palling or a Ring Ouzel in that open field, but there was zip!
In final attempt to try and see a nice bird, I drove into Great Yarmouth and stopped by the cemetery. Assuming they are the same birds, the two Firecrests were still present in the Holm Oaks in the southern section. Showing well and being quite vocal, calling and so on.
I met two other local birders and chatted for a while. They too had a surprisingly quiet morning. We watched a couple of Chiffchaffs fly-catching in the pines before I decided to call it a day and head home. Hopefully as we jump forward into British summer time tonight, tomorrow will bring some new migrants in.