Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Norfolk Weekend via Essington

After Shetland I was sitting at home chilling on Sunday when there was a fair bit of activity on the phone with messages from Bob and Tom (Julien was on for a second week). SIBERIAN ACCENTOR a first for Britain, gutting, the weeks of straight easterlies were paying dividends, I don’t suffer from bird envy, I was perfectly happy with Siberian Thrush, probably my most wanted species for the UK. I’d missed a first but you can’t see everything.

Joy and I had a weekend planned at Steve’s place at Thornham, so on Thursday I picked up Joy from work at 2.30 and we headed off. We had just got onto the A14 when my phone went, It was Bobby D in a panic SIBERIAN ACCENTOR at Essington on Spurn. What to do, Joy consulted the map, I though there was just about enough time to get there, we got off at junction 1 headed north then west to reconnect with the M1 and went as fast as was legally possible towards Spurn. It soon became clear that it wasn’t going to happen and when I hit the rush hour traffic in Hull we ground to a halt. The internet found us a hotel for the night which was really good value and only a 20 minute drive to Essington in the morning.

The weather was poor with heavy rain showers during the night and I was relatively confident that the bird would be there. At breakfast, it was all birders, some who had seen the bird and some who had not. I was relaxed (amazingly) and we arrived on-site at 7.00am, perhaps more importantly news had come through that the bird was still present! We were not the first and had to park about half a mile away. As we made our way to the bird, there was Bobby D sitting in the back of his car enjoying a coffee! I would have been happy at waiting 6 years to drag this species back, so 6 days was a Brucie Bonus if there ever was one! We queued and eventually when our turn came we saw said species.
Siberian Accentor, Essington
Siberian Accentor, Essington
The next four hours were special, I had had a great day on Unst but this was special as well. There were birds everywhere, at Sammys Point we missed Raddes Warbler, but saw four Ring Ouzel, Redstart, Woodcock, Wheatear with a steady flow of birds moving, it was stunning even if the weather wasn’t.

Next at Kilnsea we got the last parking space on the road, with birders everywhere, it was like the old days. The Guru that is Lee Evans, spoke to me about four times during the day, he was smiling so he must have been impressed. We followed a group to Church Fields, not quite sure why at the time, but the ringing station was having a good day, with Firecrest, Yellow-browed Warbler and a Dusky Warbler paraded before the waiting birders who numbers around 200!
Shore Lark, Kilnsea

Next down to the beach where there was a really showy Shore Lark and on the sea I had an Arctic Skua go past, but no Albatross! We were about to leave when a commotion to our left had me interested, Olive-backed Pipit – what a day!

By this time we really had to be making our way to Norfolk so just after lunch we headed down to Thornham, it took ages. We visited Titchwell before dark seeing a couple of Little Stint and Spoonbill then it was back to the cottage for a well earned meal.

The next day was hard we were both tired from yesterday but we managed a Barred Warbler and Dusky Warbler at Burnham Over Staithe. But being knackered we headed back bumping into Steve and Jeanette on the way. Apart from a visit to Titchwell where we saw a Yellow-browed Warbler, Med Gull and a few bits and pieces we called it a night.

The next day saw heavy rain so we headed home, completely satisfied with what we had seen.

No comments: