Wednesday 26 October 2016

Two good 'ears

Though pleased to have connected with the Easington Siberian Accentor, I was still a little disappointed not to have been able to pop back across from York during the week to see the Isabelline Wheatear. Alas the training course was full on and there was no opportunity to duck out. However, all was not lost. Hot on the heals of finding a Red-flanked Bluetail, Dave Andrews scored again with a very fine Isabelline Wheatear at Burnham Overy Dunes on Friday 21st October (see James Lowens superbly titled account on his blog - Isabella's knickers).
Tiredness, a head cold, anticipation of crowds (it was after all the first twitchable Norfolk bird in 39 years) and 'stuff' to do at home all added together and meant I didn't venture up there until Sunday morning to see the bird. That was taking a bit of a chance but I was lucky and the bird had stayed.
Numbers were not as small as expected on Sunday either. A female Desert Wheatear and a Pallas's Warbler were also drawing the crowds. When we arrived the Isabelline Wheatear was showing to about 20-30 gathered birders. The bird was distant though and mobile.
I moved up to the brow of the dune ridge and sat down. The bird was probably a good 500 yards away at this point and I felt my best chance would be if it moved closer in its own time. Which it did, though not that close.

Isabelline Wheatear, Burnham Overy Dunes, Norfolk - 23rd October 2016
With the crowds increasing and the bird being ever mobile, I felt the next option was to head further west and look for the female Desert Wheatear. Thankfully this bird was a lot more obliging.

Female Desert Wheatear, Burnham Overy Dunes, Norfolk - 23rd October 2016

And even sat still long enough for an obligatory video!

I have edited out the sound because the background noise of the wind is pretty annoying - which is a pity because there is also the background noise of an arguement between a birder and a photographer that was quite entertaining!
We should have finished the day at that point but instead drove to Brancaster Staithe and yomped out along the beach to where a Black-throated Thrush had been seen earlier that morning consorting with a Redwing flock (maybe the recent Scolt Head bird?). Anywho - there was no sign sadly and the walk nearly killed me - I arrived back in a total sweat to the car and have been laid up with a head cold since! The price you pay I guess.

No comments:

Post a Comment