A diary of my birding activity covering highlights and photos from my birding adventures. Mainly Norfolk (UK), occasionally beyond. I might mention the odd thing that isn't avian, but for moth and other insect news check out my mothing diary.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Clouded Yellow

Yes I know, this diary is meant to be about birds, not insects, but I think most birders like a nice Clouded Yellow and it was better than any of the birds I saw.  Burnham Overy last Saturday (29th).  I arrived not far off dawn to find the tide already covering the car park.  Those sleeping in camper vans on the staithe were waking up to see themselves surrounded by the sea but managed to get out just in time.  When my car was flooded last year on a 2m 60 flood I concluded that I could get away with parking on the staithe at 2m 30.  Today's high tide was forecast at 2m 30 and it was still the best part of an hour off high tide.  I parked on the road.

A Common Sandpiper was at the staithe and a Spoonbill flew over.  As I looked over towards Holkham I glimpsed a large white bird that looked suspiciously like it might be the Great White Egret reported there yesterday.  It reappeared from behind the trees but only for a fraction of a second before dropping down by the Cormorant roost - not enough to clinch it.  Don't think the Great White was reported this day, but it was reported again the following day.

Bearded Tit called from the reedy pool, a Greenshank flew by and a bit further along the sea wall I reached John G who was watching 2 Whinchats.  As I scanned over towards the channel I picked up a Little Tern and then a juvenile Little Gull.  John pressed on while I took my time.  A Green Sandpiper dropped in to a muddy puddle but stayed for about half a second before heading off again.  This Whimbrel was in the Sea-lavender in the same place as last time.

Whimbrel, Burnham Overy, 29th August

At least 2 more Whinchats were in the sueada on the way to Gun Hill along with a Chiffchaff commuting between there and the Sibe Thrush bushes.

Whinchats, Burnham Overy, 29th August

A second-winter Mediterranean Gull looked suspiciously like it might have been the same one I saw last time.  Also a juvenile/first-winter Miedterranean Gull there and among 80+ Sandwich Terns and several Common Terns were at least 3 Little Terns (1 adult, 2 juveniles).

Visible migration consisted of a few Swallows and House Martins, 1 Swift and the odd Sand Martin, and I heard Siskin calling overhead a couple of times.  On the ground though things were very quiet after the early promise provided by the Whinchats.  The east end of the dunes were almost devoid of passage migrants, just a few common warblers that for the most part may have bred in the area.  I used to say Lesser Whitethroat was my favourite bird but then I met Bee-eaters, and then Swallow-tailed Kite.  Lesser Whitethroats are still pretty high up on the list...

Lesser Whitethroat, Burnham Overy, 29th August

Heading back through the north side of the dunes and through the valley a white butterfly caught my eye.  Something seemed amiss and a second look confirmed it had a thick dark border to the wings - it was a Clouded Yellow.  Lacking much yellow on the upperwing it had to be a female of the form helice - which in my experience seems to occur in a much higher proportion than it's meant to.

Clkouded Yellow (f. helice), Burnham Overy, 29th August

No comments:

Post a Comment