Day 5 - Horsey & Sheringham Sea Front:
Today it was a toss up between going to Minsmere, Lakenheath Fen, or Horsey. We wanted to see Cranes this holiday, since we are in Norfolk, so we decided to go to Horsey, as there is also a good spot for sea watching at Horsey Gap. So we set off, and on the approach to the village, we spotted some birders with their scopes up looking into a field. We stopped, and it didn't take long to realise that they were watching 3 Common Cranes at the back of the field. It was really nice to see these birds again, as I saw them a few years ago on a trip to Norfolk at Stubb Mill near Hickling Broad, but we only got distant flight views, so it was great today to see 2 adults and a juvenile feeding on the ground, and to hear them calling. Later on we stopped in a layby to scan the filds for Cranes and raptors, where we saw 3 Marsh Harriers, 2 Kestrels and a Buzzard. We also heard the Cranes again, and then we saw a pair rise over the trees and land behind a hedge down the road, so we went done the road and had nice views again. I also managed to get a flight shot of them before they disappeared!
We then went to Horsey Mere, where we had Wrens and some nice late Dragonflies that were quite photogenic, but that's all we saw. So we went over to Horsey Gap for some sea watching, which wasn't nearly as good as yesterday! Just some Greater Black-backed Gulls to add to our day list. We did get nice close views of some curious Grey Seals that bobbed up and down in the water, and I got some shots.
As it was only 2pm at this stage, we thought we should go back to Sheringham, as Horsey Gap sea watching wasn't proving very fruitful, to add to our list of sea birds from yesterday. Unfortunately, the winds weren't as strong, and all we saw were lots of Gannets (with the variable plumage of the juveniles we had a couple of occasions where we thought we had a shearwater, but it was in fact a second year Gannet!), Brent Geese (a flock of 8 had a pale grey/brown bird in the middle the same size and shape of the Brents - very odd...), and at the start I got on 3 birds heading east which looked like Bonxies, but that's only going on 1 day's sea watching experience!
And that was it for today. Here are some photos:
I'm Sorrel, a young birder and wildlife artist based in the East Midlands - this is my blog all about my birding and wildlife adventures.