Monday, 27 February 2017
Holkham, Norfolk 20/2/17 Shore Larks, Spoonbills etc
After a 6 hour drive we arrived at our base in Norfolk at around 10am. After unpacking and a quick cup of coffee we headed for the nature reserve at Holkham. Plenty of people parked up and a good number of birders. Both sides of the drive were fields full of Wigeon, Lapwing Shoveler etc and well worth a look. We stopped to ask a birder what would be the best area to start and he politely informed us what was to be seen and where.
First stop the beach area to look for the Shorelarks. The beach itself is beautiful consisting of flat sands, dunes and pine trees. We headed for where a group of birders were standing and then we spotted our first ever Shorelarks, wow what beautiful birds and a lifer! Although the wind was very strong we were still able to get great views through binoculars. A different story trying to keep a camera still! Heading back along the beach to visit the hides a group of Pink footed Geese flew overhead.
From the hide we had a view of a Marsh Harrier, Great White Egret and Black tailed Godwits battling against the wind. From the Tower Hide a real surprise 3 Spoonbills and one with a twig in its bill. Also from this hide good numbers of White fronted Geese, a couple of Egyptian Geese, Kestrel and 2 Marsh Harriers. 29 bird species seen plus a couple of Hares in the field and our first butterfly of the year a Brimstone. Highlights Shorelarks, Common Gull, White fronted Geese, Brent Geese, Pink footed Geese, Egyptian Geese, Marsh Harrier, Spoonbills, Great Egret, Curlews, Black tailed Godwits, Stonechat.
What a great start to our first visit to Norfolk!
Shorelarks - a bit too distant to get a good shot but wow we saw them and that's what counts!