And... Pam's birthday.
After card and present opening, it was time to drive to Natural Surroundings for our weekly moth-ing session. It was good this morning, plenty of moths of good variety in the three traps opened. The traps are put out in different areas of the grounds. One on the summerhouse type building's balcony, one in the herb garden and the other in a more open area.
New for us was a Yellow-line Quaker, an Acleris sparsana and an O glaucinalis (?) There was also a very tiny Groundhopper, less than half a centimetre long - excluding antennae. Pam looked it up in her newly acquired Insect photographic book and we ID'd it as Potato Leafhopper, Eupteryx aurata.
Afterwards, we celebrated with a breakfast of cheese on toast in the cafe. Pam's choice. Very thick bread with delicious cheese, I had one slice, Pam had two !
Where to bird? So many migrants on yesterday's strong easterly with lashing rain. We succeeded in being where birds had been seen but not when we were there. Holme first, no sign of the reported Pallas's Warbler in the NWT car park sycamores. It hadn't been seen for more than an hour. ( seen well again later in the afternoon). News of a Grey Phalarope 'showing well' at Titchwell sent us on our way. So many Robins everywhere along the access road.
The car parks and road edges were full at Titchwell, luckily our fishermen's car park was empty. Red-crested Pochard, Bearded Tit, Little Grebe and a cloud of Golden Plover as we walked to Island Hide. All seats were full so we entered the hide, which was almost empty. The Goldens- a flock of 500+ - were very restless, constantly taking off, wheeling about and landing again. Trying to locate waders amongst them was a nightmare, both in the air and on the ground. I found a Little Stint, one Avocet, Ruff and Dunlin but no Phalarope. No-one else in the hide had seen it either. The pager gave a 'no sign of ' at 1.10 as we continued to scan. The facilities called. Two Water Rails ran across a bare area of mud near the Island Hide, always a pleasure to see them.
Pam's choice to-day. Did she fancy walking in Wells Woods ( Radde's, OBP ). No, neither did I. What about Gun Hill? No way, too far. The Steppe Grey Shrike again? Not unless someone was feeding it mealworms.
So... we went home for birthday cake (Waitrose's Belgian Chocolate) and a cuppa before a birthday dinner - requested - of Donald Russell melt in your mouth Fillet Steak and Chips from the Kingfisher at Walcott. A side salad was the healthy bit.
With all the good birds around, not the best of lists but a very enjoyable and leisurely day.