Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Mystery Bird (or is it?)

So I stop for some lunch on some high ground just outside Northrepps and scan for birds. Almost immediately I pick up a Common Buzzard high up against the clouds and can hear a distant mewing. Watching this bird, a second appears, head on in the same area. Looking a little longer winged than the presumed adult I figure this may be a juvenile (they appear slimmer than the adults when fresh). Then it turns. "W.T.F!!!" out loud, as it shows an extensive white tail base (not pale or diffused but dazzling white!) with a clear cut, demarcated, black terminal band! I've seen Common Buzzard with pale tail bases (I look at every Buzzard I see!) but nothing like this! (Although they do occur, see below) This bird has now got my full attention ! Underneath though the bird is pale, too pale maybe for the other, highly unlikely candidate, but that tail is still screaming at me. I manage a very distant pic, cursing the fact that I don't have my 'scope with me, and as quickly as I found it, I lost it - raptors, never was any good at 'em!
Some comparison images blattently stolen from the net...
Common Buzzard by Brian Small.....

gorgeous Rough-leg, somewhere in Russia.....
my pale, screwed up, (short handed!) thing.... a Common pretender? (Pump it up to 200% if you can't see the speck!)

Saturday, August 22, 2009


A morning dog walk up the track produced 3 Common Buzzard (2 ads and a juv) and a brace of Hobby hawking below the former. House martin and Swallow much in evidence over the village but no sign of any Swifts.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

End of an Era....

After a roller-coaster of a summer trying to make long term plans, and on the cusp of booking some far away flights somewhere, a crazy two hour period this week found us having an offer excepted on a house we have been courting for months followed by a 'cash' buyer for our place after being on the market for ten days!!!!!!!!!!!!! The move is not a million miles from here, in terms of distance or move date (!) but it is not in Aylmerton. However, between the packing and running around there is an autumn to come so I'm sure WildlifeAylmerton hasn't seen its last post trumpeted just yet, here's hoping for one last goody.....

Thursday, August 06, 2009


Went straight to Cley from work this afternoon and spent a couple of bird filled hours in front of the scrapes here getting a great wader fix! :
Spotted Redshank 15
Greeshank 18
Green Sandpiper 6
Common Sandpiper 5
Wood Sandpiper 1
Ruff 20
Yellow-legged Gull 5
Little Stint 5
Curlew Sandpiper 2
Ringed Plover 6
Little Ringed Plover 2
Dunlin 30
Golden Plover 2
Spoonbill 1
Whimbrel 2
Black-tailed Godwit c30
Cetti's Warbler 1


Avocet with juvenile Marsh Harrier


Just arrived... 4 Little Stint with 2 Curlew Sandpipers

Juvenile Spotted Redshank



Had loads of moths last night for a couple of hours. Amongest the Yellow Blunderwings of all sizes, Common Rustics and Ruby ,were first Rosy Footman for the year, and two new ones for me and the garden an Oak Nycteoline and a fabulous Antler, the latter was really smart looking.


Oak Nycteoline

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Un-Great-spotted Cuckoo

Saw my first Cuckoo of the year today (!), I mean my first Eurasian Cuckoo...the (supposedly) commoner one!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Great-spotted Cuckoo

This is how to enjoy rare birds, a week later with about 5 other people!! Nipped down to Kelling this evening where the Great-spotted Cuckoo from last week (which I resisted temptation to go and see) had reappeared. The bird gave great views in fading light and was feeding happily on caterpillars. Had Ladybirds been part of its diet it may well have O.D'd on them, as they are in biblical proportions at the moment up here. The cuckoo was my first UK sighting of this species.

Great-spotted Cuckoo

....Bishy Barnebees!!!