Monday, 20 December 2010

Winter catch up

Waxwing, north Norfolk

Common Snipe, north Norfolk

As usual I seem to start a post by apologising for the delay since my last appearance and proffering the same mix of excuses; work and family commitments reducing time in the field and a intermittent BT Broadband connection reducing time online.

Even for a range restricted birder like me this has been a Waxwing winter. I've had a flock fly over the front garden whilst unloading the car, a single bird over Titchwell and a couple of roadside flocks feeding on hedgerow fruit. All were unexpected treats, picked up on call or out of the corner of the eye whilst driving a back road in NW Norfolk. What I haven't managed is to spend time in good light with confiding birds so none of the shots I have taken are any better than 'record' shots.
It would be nice to think that the cold weather would push over some exciting birds from the continent [Nutcraker, Gyr Falcon or a White Tailed Eagle would be good]. Even without these sort of birds its been nice to have a chance to take some pictures of birds in the snow and ice.
The second picture is a of a Common Snipe frozen out of the main body of the saltmarsh at Thornham and forced to feed in the open on the edge of a tidal creek. Even here with the twice daily scouring of the tide the sides of the creek were coated in a layer of ice.
Not had a chance to have a proper look inside the new hide at Titchwell yet, but I'm told its quite spectacular and offers a great birding experience something to look forward to when I get a moment over the holiday season.