Monday, 18 April 2011

North Norfolk.... Day 4.

Holme NWT was the first stop today, again a new area for me. After paying a fiver to park the car a walk along the coastal path to the Visitor Centre was enjoyed. Linnet, Dunnock, Reed Bunting, Goldfinch, Meadow Pipit and Magpie were seen along this path with Skylark heard. The warden was a friendly chap and very helpful, being a fellow Brummie I expected nothing!! I asked him what species the nests of caterpillars were that were abundant in trees and shrubs, he told me they were caterpillars of the Buff-Tip Moth (I have since learnt that they are Brown-tail moths). I had seen nests like this in the Algarve of Processionary caterpillars that if touched can give a nasty allergic reaction and the Buff-Tip caterpillars do the same.
The warden rushed out of the centre at one point telling everyone to look out for a Common Crane that had just flown over Titchwell heading our way!! No luck with the Crane then he suddenly called 'Bittern' and a fleeting glimpse of a Bittern flying the length of the Marshes was a nice consolation prize! Buzzards x3 were circling very high in the sky over the reserve and a Marsh Harrier circled well below them. There were several hundred Pink-footed Geese in surrounding farmland that were being spooked a few times and fortunately a few hundred flew to a grassy bank opposite the Visitor Centre on one occasion giving great views of them. I had given up hope of seeing any Pinkfeet on this trip especially as there were none seen at Holkham, so they were a pleasure to see.
A return walk along the track to the carpark was taken with Curlew, Shoveler, Sand Martin and a male Wheatear in the grassy marsh being seen. Maybe a walk around the NWT Reserve will be taken on a future trip.

Titchwell was the venue for the remainder of the day. The wind had picked up and though sunny it felt quite chilly walking the path to the Marshes and beach. A pair of Red Crested Pochard were on the Freshwater Marsh, a lovely diving duck to see, a pair of Garganey where also showing well today!
Bird species were much the same as the previous visit on the 7th.

The wind was much cooler down on the beach so it was just a quick scan around today. Common Scoter were seen offshore and the usual birds at the waters edge. A dead seal pup having been washed up on to the beach was a sad sight to see.
While walking past the Freshwater Reeds a Bittern was spotted heading in the direction of the Fen Hide! A quick walk to the Fen Hide and once settled inside a Bittern flew into the vegetation but didn't stop long and took flight again. A lovely end to what had been another great day in North Norfolk!


Buff-Tip Moth caterpillars.
Edit: I have since learnt that they are Brown-tail moths! I hope someone tells the!

Pink-footed Geese, Holme.

The two R's!

Bittern and Parrinder hide.


  1. Another fantastic day for you Pam,with some smashing species! I love the 2 R's pic....a great comparison shot!
    The Bittern in flight paints a lovely picture too.

  2. I am pleased that you enjoyed the photo's Ruth, thank you!
    Each day was a good one and great day's to remember!