Sunday, 15 July 2012


Sunday July 15
More like winter at Titchwell to-day. We were there earlyish, walking by 8.15, to find the really unexpected, sparsely populated reserve. On a Sunday too. We didn't meet the first birder until almost at Parrinder Hide. He'd only seen five others.
Our first Little Grebe of the month in the stretch of water to the east before the freshmarsh, then an empty seat from which to scan the latter's eclipse ducks, Canada Geese, Avocets, Black-tailed Godwit and Ruff. Pam found a Shoveller and then, a very large flock of waders flew in from the beach. Swirling about in restless, ever-changing shape and direction clouds before descending onto the islands. About 1500 Knot, some still with vestiges of red. Another winter scene to add to the overcast grey sky and northerly wind. We'd left home with cloudless sky - and no coat. Luckily I found a Peter Storm waterproof in the car.
Passing the bench completely occupied by a photographer and his kit, (we could still see him despite camouflage clothes, lens and tripod cover !), we walked on to the beach at low tide. This bench was occupied too, we scrunched on over the razorshells on the beach to the ruined building where we stood and scoped the sea and beach. A single female Common Scoter, Common Terns, a few Turnstone, Bar-tailed Godwit and hundreds of Black-headed Gulls and Oystercatchers.
The walk along the bank to Parrinder Hide now has attractive oval information plaques at intervals. Mainly the history of the reserve, which was very interesting. The Knot had gone but we closer views of the Ruff, 20+ Dunlin and  Little Ringed Plover. Another photographer occupying two seats - he kept swapping - and his bag occupied the window ledge in front of a third. He then ate a meal very noisily. What a pain.
Much of the path towards the Centre after Island Mere is covered on both sides by tall, dense and encroaching thistle. Walking single file is advised. The sun had come out now and there were several species of Bee and Hoverfly on the thistle heads, I took a few photos with my point-and-shoot. Very unusually, Pam hadn't slipped her camera into her pocket, and had to be content by acting as a Pointer for me! I couldn't keep up. There were several species present, will try and identify them later.....

Hoverfly sp - only one and a half centimetres long.

Breakfast at Brancaster Staithe and then a visit to the One-Stop-Nature-Shop in Burnham Deepdale. Richard Campey - the man we met again at Sculthorpe - owns it. Interesting row of shops,  including a supermarket and a cafe, people were sitting out with their drinks and snacks. The nature shop is interesting too, quite small but full of a variety of stuff. Bins and scopes, books, maps, gloves, moth equipment and digital microscopes. Richard was identifying moths he's caught last night, Pam wants a microscope to do the same thing. Christmas present?
A most enjoyable and varied morning.

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