Parked up in the car park at the end of the East bank at Cley at 9.30AM.It was sunny but a cool breeze was blowing from the NE as I headed straight for the Bishop hide.There was only one birder in the hide and in response to my cheery "Morning anything about ?" his response was not encouraging "It's f****** dead mate". A quick look round proved he was right.
OK then I thought let's have a go at getting some Marsh Harrier and Bearded Tit shots so I left the hide and headed back to the East bank.Besides my bins and camera I was carrying a new purchase a small lightweight folding stool which was a godsend when waiting in a spot for birds to show up.However after well over an hour waiting Marsh Harriers and Bearded Tits on this particular day were rarer than a goal from a Birmingham striker or in other words none were seen.While waiting I did get some shots of a Sedgie which pleased me because back home these chaps had not posed for me this year.
I then decided to walk to the shingle banks hoping for better luck but as soon as a birder I met on the path told me what was on the shingle I broke into an excited trot even shooting past a small group waiting for a Grasshopper Warbler to show again well these are 10 a penny back in Warwickshire.
So what got me so excited? A small flock of Shorelarks were feeding on the shingle banks.I thought these chaps had long gone by now but no they weren't.I'd never properly seen a Shorelark before as the one that I'd seen at Upton Warren a few years ago lurked deep in the scrub on one of the islands so no shots possible.
There were about ten of them in the flock and I soon located them but it must have been North Norfolk dog walkers day because there were dog walkers constantly walking past and the flock was very mobile.When they landed they were perfectly camouflaged in the shingle and hard to spot.It was very difficult to get anywhere them.Did managed my first shots of a Shorelark so I was well chuffed.
After lunch I spent an hour in the Walsey Hills reserve where a Pied Flycatcher and a Lesser Whitethroat were showing but much too far away for any shots.I then had a walk round the Salthouse beach but I saw very little and as the wind was now very strong and I was knackered I left for the hotel.