Naturelog: 28 April

Keith and I are in North Norfolk for a few days birdwatching. We are based in the seaside town of Cromer which gives us good access to the coast by bus. We awoke this morning to find it raining hard. In fact, it hadn’t stopped since we arrived here last night.

Titchwell Marsh

Thankfully we weren’t on public transport today as Dave and Viv, two friends of Keith’s who live locally, have agreed to take us to Titchwell RSPB reserve and the surrounding area. The wind is blowing in from the sea as we start along the track that leads to the beach. On the freshwater marsh, there is a group of about 50 Sandwich Terns along with a couple of Common Terns. A single Ruffe was present with 12 Avocets, 20 Black-tailed Godwits, a couple of Redshanks and a single Grey Plover. Viv spotted a sleeping male Red Crested Pochard. Brent, Egyptian and Greylag Geese were also present.

Black-tailed Godwit
Avocet on nest
Sandwich Terns







The rain was still falling and so we decided to forgo a walk down to the beach and instead returned to the car and made our way to Chelsey Barns looking for Grey Partridge, an increasingly a rare bird in our countryside. Good numbers of the commoner Red-legged Partridge were seen, along with Pheasant. Eventually, we saw 2 Partridges ahead of us on the road and on closer examination we found they were Grey Partridges. We also saw 2 Roe Deer and a good number of Brown Hares.

Grey Partridge. Photo by Sergey Yeliseev (









Our next stop was Brancaster staithe where we added Greenshank to the list. We then visited the Holkham Estate, first stopping overlooking the coastal marsh where we saw Little Egret and Great White Egret in flight and further along the road we saw another Great White Egret roosting in the reeds. We then turned inland to the farmlands of the estate stopping to scan over the fields. Highlights here were Yellowhammer, Eurasian Curlew and another pair of Grey Partridge.

Little Egret


Then it was time to head back to Cromer. Despite the rain, we have seen over 60 species of bird – a good total for a day. Our thanks to Dave and Viv for driving us around and for coming out on such a horrible day weather-wise.

Brent Goose [sp] (Branta bernicla)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Northern Shoveler (Spatula clypeata)
Gadwall [sp] (Mareca strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Eurasian Teal (Anas crecca)
Red-crested Pochard (Netta rufina)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Red-legged Partridge [sp] (Alectoris rufa)
Grey Partridge [sp] (Perdix perdix)
Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Eurasian Spoonbill [sp] (Platalea leucorodia)
Great Egret [sp] (Ardea alba)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Western Marsh Harrier [sp] (Circus aeruginosus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Pied Avocet (Recurvirostra avosetta)
Grey Plover [sp] (Pluvialis squatarola)
Eurasian Curlew [sp] (Numenius arquata)
Black-tailed Godwit [sp] (Limosa limosa)
Ruff (Calidris pugnax)
Common Redshank [sp] (Tringa totanus)
Common Greenshank (Tringa nebularia)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Mediterranean Gull (Ichthyaetus melanocephalus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Sandwich Tern (Thalasseus sandvicensis)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Stock Dove [sp] (Columba oenas)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kestrel [sp] (Falco tinnunculus)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Skylark [sp] (Alauda arvensis)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Eurasian Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Pied Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla alba)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
Common Linnet [sp] (Linaria cannabina)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Yellowhammer [sp] (Emberiza citrinella)
Common Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)


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