Got to say, wasn't massively keen on joining the crowds at Titchwell today, but with relatives visiting it seemed only fair to visit a premier bird reserve, surely guaranteeing some decent birds for them.
The search began not far from the car-park, and I picked up the calling Yellow-browed Warbler that has been present for over a month now. Avoiding the ridiculous scrum in the wood, we waited by the path and eventually were rewarded with neck-aching views of this always super migrant.
A helpful member of staff alerted us to the presence of feeding Water Rail in the ditch near the centre, and we didn't have to wait long to hear the squealing call, and then this usually elusive bird fed no more than 2 metres away from us, probably my best ever views of this species.
Walking to the beach, 2 Lesser Redpoll were in bushes feeding on catkins with Goldfinch. Barely out of the car-park, and some great birds already!
100s of Golden Plover were on the scrape, and opposite were many Curlew and a single Grey Plover on the marsh. Pintail were looking glamorous as ever.
The sea was a little quiet, although at least one Little Gull passed in a short time, and a juvenile Gannet was loafing close to the shore. Knot, Sanderling and Turnstone all fed at the shoreline.
Walking back to the centre, the Water Rail spot was again of interest, but this time a Woodcock sat silently in a sun spot. We all felt lucky to observe this species at such close range.
A visit to Gypsy Lane away from the crowds proved rewarding; a single Tundra Bean Goose fed just across a channel in a meadow. Seems to have been an arrival of these Geese today, but I certainly had not expected to find my own! This was the icing on the cake of a super day on the north coast. Sure, give me the east coast, solitude and a bag of chips any day, but this ranks as one of my best day's birding this year no doubt. Crippling views of Water Rail and Woodcock, unforgettable stuff.