Birdwatching...the new Rock 'n' Roll


Nye's First Beach List

Posted by birdbeards2010 on February 28, 2012 at 3:50 PM

Still revelling in the Welsh Triple Crown glory (I'll admit, I have (been) turned as far as it goes with rugby. My passion and my boy's is with Cymru) we decided to take Nye for his first outing to the beach, and where better to start than Winterton? Delightful in every way for a family fun trip, with the added bonus of being a bird magnet and having a cafe without equal.

En route, however, I managed to persuade the Welsh Girl that we needed to take a quick diversion via the Acle Straight swan flock (or is it herd?). Having got the gen off Le Hatt we ended up in an unsalubrious and noisy layby, with me scanning the marsh on the westside to the delight of a few tooting passersby. They were, I may add, all heading towards Yarmouth so I'm not too worried about any intellectually superior pisstake horn-blowing. If you're heading to Yarmouth the rest really does speak for itself.

Before I managed to connect with any tarty swans a large raptor caught my eye, leisurely surveying the marshes next to a windmill. Once locked on, I caught sight of her distinctive ringtail and realised I was on to a female Hen Harrier. Tidy! It took me ages to see my first one and still now they give me a special thrill. Acers!

having logged the Hen, I turned my concentration to the Swans and quickly picked up 2 Bewick's and 4 Whoopers. Job done. Some swans at distance in a heat haze, but not your every day swans at all, so very pleasing.

From there it was out to Winterton and the cafe was our first stop. Excellent sausage and egg baguettes and Nye remained sound asleep in his cosy little bear suit. After our lunch, WG returned to the car to attempt to feed my boy, which gave me an exceelent window to get the scope out. Numerous Red Throated Divers flew west, occasionally dropping down on the water to dive. A single and then multiple groups of Gannet then did the same and I picked up a group of 5 Common Scoter paddling around, as is their wont. The odd seal bobbed or surfed close in, and then I got the call that Nye was still sound asleep and so it was time to take him for a stroll on the beach - his first ever.

The sunshine was glorious and the sound of the waves lapping the shore retained its uniquecalming effect (at least it did once WG had got the papoose adjusted to her satisfaction!) The boy still did not wake. A flash of white and black soon got me pumped, though, as 3 Sanderling whipped their way up along the edge of the surf. The boy still slept on. Then the resident pair of Ringed Plover made it 7 new listers for the day. Wowsers!

We got home, carrying the boy inside in his car seat. He was as asleep as he had been ever since we left the house.

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