A good month of birds and quiet on the moths.

October came around so fast and with hopes of some new stuff to record. 
Tuesday 1st Oct
Mistle thrush and a couple of Egyptian geese were a good start and with the prospect of the next day being a good seawatching day brought hope.
Wednesday 2nd Oct
Indeed there seemed to be a lot of birds passing out to sea, good numbers of Brent Geese and Shelduck, and groups of Common Scoter and Wigeon but not on the same scale, just Curlew were seen on the wader side species.



Thursday 3rd Oct
The seas had calmed but just off the coast I counted 18+ Red-throated Divers, The big movement of Jays was prominent, 8 in one flock flew over the garden, a lot of Skylark were passing over too, inland on the afternoon dog walk I saw a Stonechat and Peregrine.
Friday 4th Oct
Today I found my first Redwings and Brambling of the autumn, the Brambling was a lone bird mixed in with a flock of Chaffinch. 
Saturday 5th Oct
Today brought a lot more Redwing around the village, also seen were a few Goldcrest and a Blackcap and a possible Yellow Browed Warbler calling but it couldn't be found after hearing just the one call!
But definitely the event of the day was the sighting of 6 Water Spouts distantly out to sea, the weather conditions were obviously spot on as a cloudy system moved in, there were reports of the spouts from here along to Cley.
Here you can see the start of the funnel emerging from the clouds.
Monday 7th Oct
Two nice birds today and both opposite each other, first I watched and photographed a Black Redstart and then a Ring Ouzel.






Thursday 10th Oct
4 Swallows heading east were probably the last group we would see passing.
Sunday 13th Oct
A Nuthatch was a welcome sight on the morning dog walk, and there was a big fall of Blackbirds, they seemed to be everywhere. A single House Martin feeding over the clifftop was a nice and last sighting of the month. With reports of Ring Ouzel along the coast I was eager to add them to the garden list, and sure enough after plenty of watching I had 2 birds fly low over the garden giving me my 100th garden bird species since moving here just over 2 years ago. 
I was still seeing Hummingbird Hawkmoths occasionally and another Swallow put in a fly past.
Tuesday 15th Oct
I watched 100's of Thrushes flying in from over the sea, all at different heights but mostly all were Redwing, with some Song Thrush, I also managed to see just 1 Fieldfare, the first of the autumn.
Wednesday 16th Oct
With Redwing and Blackbird still all over the place it was nice to see Yellowhammer and Bullfinch down the back lanes, and Lapwing passing over.
Thursday 17th Oct
Today was Sarah and my anniversary so we took the dogs for a lovely walk around Kelling water meadows and along to Salthouse, a lot of Curlew flew over and landed on the flooded meadow, what a lovely sound hearing them, but even more welcome were some confiding Bearded Tits and then a calling Cetti's Warbler.
Monday 21st Oct
Today was a seawatching day, and there were plenty of birds moving along the coast.

Plenty of Eider were pushed closer, lots of auks flying through and sitting on the sea, I picked out both Razorbill and Guillemot and with a number of Little Auk on the move I was hopeful of picking one out and luck was on my side as I saw a single bird pass through.


Wednesday 23rd Oct
There were a lot feeding frenzies going on between Trimingham and Sidestrand, numerous schools of fish came to the surface and were jumping out of the water, the presence of these brought in hundreds of gulls and the frenzy went on for nearly an hour. Up at Sidestrand we watched a Marsh Tit flit past us and head off along the clifftops, and a single Swallow fly by.
Monday 28th Oct
The day before a group of 6 Snow Bunting had been reported in the fields between Trimingham and Sidestrand so this morning we walked the dogs along that stretch and were lucky enough to find 3 Snow Bunting feeding among the grassy crop field.


A Woodcock was flushed from the lanes later that day, no doubt I'll be seeing more in the woodland.
Tuesday 29th Oct
A lot of Starlings had been moving over in smaller groups but during the afternoon a huge flock had congregated near the clifftop wood and were feeding on the slopes, later 2 groups numbering around 500 in total passed over the garden.

Thursday 31st Oct
So that brings us to the last day of the month and it turned out to be a good day, first, the fields that held the Snow Buntings had been ploughed and literally as I scanned and said to Sarah " the Golden Plover will be returning now its ploughed" I picked out 5 plover sat in the middle of the field! 
Then approaching the end of the walk with the dogs, I stopped to search through a feeding flock of tits only to find a stunning little Firecrest, what a mornings walk and the day hadn't finished there, early afternoon I popped round to the clifftop to have a scan, it was quiet out to sea and not a lot in the scrub but then flying along over the sea I picked out 2 Great White Egrets heading my way!

Though appearing quiet through October looking back at the reports it certainly didn't show that way, ...Oh and there's not forgetting the mothing!
Now mothing was definitely quieter than it had been, the weather wasn't great to leave the trap out on most nights and not a lot of moths came to the trap when it was out, but I managed a few new garden ticks.
 Grey Shoulder-Knot
 Beaded Chestnut
 Dark Chestnut
 Red-Line Quaker
 Large Wainscot
Brick


"The Swifts depart and the Geese return" .September 2019.

Common Buzzard
 September started hopeful with a few birds starting to move around. Buzzards were starting to pass overhead and a Juv Peregrine was seen hunting around the clifftop and fields on a couple of days. There were a few groups of Swifts still passing through, but the numbers were lessening. On the 3rd whilst walking the dogs, Sarah and I watched 5 Wheatear move from the undercliff to the field adjacent. 
Teal
 Seabirds and wildfowl were moving through slowly, Red throated divers were returning, flocks of Teal and Scoter increased and a few Arctic Skuas headed up the coast. I managed to get a new patch tick when a single Purple Sandpiper flew past on the 5th. House Martin numbers increased with large groups feeding over the main clifftop wood.
B2 Stealth Bomber
 The 11th of the month was to be the last day I would see Swifts with 2 past, but something I did not expect to see "fly in off the sea" was a B2 Stealth Bomber!!! Quickly running for my camera I was able to get a couple of shots before it banked and headed towards Overstrand, this was the first time I had seen one and it definitely left us all buzzing after watching it fly past.
Mid month and the geese had once again started to return, a group of 50+ was just the start and every day we heard them pass over and in ever increasing numbers, so nice to be hearing them again, makes up for loosing the swifts in the sky.
Common Redstart
The 17th to the 22nd turned out to be a rewarding time, on the 17th I added a truly unexpected new garden tick....a Great Skua flew high over the house!! I couldn't believe it, the bird was then seen over Sidestrand before heading out to sea. Hummingbird Hawkmoth was becoming daily on the verbena and I watched 2 feeding together on one day. The 18th added another unexpected garden tick, whilst in the garden I noticed something shoot across the paddock behind and then it called as it flew off.....a Kingfisher!!
There was a large movement of Jays going on and groups could be heard making a racket all over the place, 6 over the house together was the largest flock I saw but well into double figures of birds passing through.
Common Redstart
 The 22nd was a manic day from the garden, during the morning I stepped out of the house to find Sarah and my Dad looking at a bird in the Holy tree outside the door, having just flown into the tree it then took flight and landed in a neighbours tree....Redstart!! what a welcome garden tick that was and unlike previous Redstart on the patch this one kept still long enough for a couple of photos. There was obviously a lot of flies on the wing as the gulls seemed to be filling the sky feeding on them, a large number of Med Gulls passed over the house, all I had to do was sit on the bench and photograph them flying over, this seems to be a regular event as I have the photographed the Med Gulls doing the same the first year we moved here. Sarah alerted me to a flock of large birds starting to gather high over the church amongst the gulls, a loud raucous calling started and a circling group of 17 Grey Herons appeared all of a sudden, I have never seen a large group of herons like this before all together.
But the 22nd hadn't finished yet!! Scroll down for the next bird species.
Med Gull 
  Med Gull
 Med Gull
 Med Gull
 Med Gull
Grey Herons
With reports of Great White Egrets on the move, a group of four were seen heading east past Cley, they were then reported moving east past Sheringham towards Cromer....fingers crossed. ( I had seen 2 GWE's the year before but did not have a camera with me at the time) Then the report came through to me that they were passing Overstrand and still heading this way...time to grab the big lens and head round to the front, well I actually ran, meeting my Dad there we started to scan the skies and sure enough they came into view passing Overstrand and then Sidestrand, I then got plenty of photos before they gracefully passed down the coast.
 Great White Egrets
 Great White Egrets
Great White Egrets
As the month progressed, on the 26th whilst out walking the dogs along the coastal path, all of a sudden Sarah frantically alerted me ( I was checking the mobile at the time) to a Short eared owl that shot up from the undercliff only to be confronted with us standing there, it flew along the cliff edge and proceeded to hunt the grasses, unsuccessfully diving at something it moved further along, as we carried along the path we again watched it hunting but this time it managed to catch a vole, it then flew out over the sea and proceeded to eat it in flight before heading back to the cliffs. A fantastic sight to end the month on.
Black Rustic
 Mothing during the month on the other hand was dire, the weather just wasn't good enough on most nights here or I trapped the same previously recorded species, but I did manage to get 2 new year and garden ticks, the Black Rustic and Lunar Underwing of which I trapped quite a few, hopefully October is not a wash out as I try to add new species still on the wing.
Lunar Underwings

Awesome August....well it was for me!

 August seemed to fly by, but there were plenty of sights to be seen and some signs of movement as the month drew to an end.
Peacock
 There had been an abundance of butterflies in our garden, some days we had what seemed just Painted Lady's everywhere and some really fresh condition ones. But it's nice to see some different species get a look in now and again, Peacock's looked stunning in the sun along with the Red Admirals, nearing the end of month a Brimstone flew through the garden, always a welcome sight as it's normally the first one you see on an early spring day.
Migrant Hawker
 This Migrant Hawker held, and still is, territory over the neighbours garden as well as ours.
The patterning on the underside of the Painted Lady butterfly is very intricate and lovely, as is I think on the Red Admiral. 
 Painted Lady
Painted Lady
 The Swift numbers started to dwindle as they passed over the garden, heading back south to Africa and bringing on the end of summer, I will sit for ages just watching these masters of the skies zip back and forth at speed, and I'll be eagerly awaiting their welcome return.
 Common Swift
 Common Swift
Lesser Whitethroat
 Along the clifftops I watched 3 Lesser Whitethroat, and in off the sea came a pair of Hobby, I had been noticing Hobby quite frequently and throughout August I watched them chase Swifts and House Martins, what an aerial combat they were. I also watched one Hobby mixed in amongst a loose group of Black Headed Gulls catching insects on the wing with them.
Lesser Whitethroat
Hobby
 I also noted Peregrine passing over the garden on a number of days, presumably ones from the Cromer Church brood. Buzzards were in good numbers, upto 8 soaring overhead at a time.
 Hobby
Pied Flycatcher
 During the last week of August there was a noticeable movement of passerines, with reports of Pied Flycatcher all over the place I kept an eye out, I had seen them before from the back garden in the trees behind so it seemed a good place to start and low and behold one indeed showed as it fed amongst the tree canopy. But that was just the start of it, I continued seeing at least 6 Pied Fly's around the house, along with a Redstart on a couple of days August had definitely ended well.
Pied Flycatcher 
 Pied Flycatcher
Pied Flycatcher 
 Pied Flycatcher
 Pied Flycatcher

MOTHS
Mothing through August was exceptional, not only did I add to the year list on nearly every trapping but I also added a few new species I'd not seen before, as the month came to an end it was the same suspects on the last trap and nothing exciting, but I hope to still get new additions to the year and garden list through September. The 2019 Year List now stands at 181 Macro moth species.
 Frosted Orange
 Tree-Lichen Beauty
 Flounced Rustic
 Bulrush Wainscot
 Tawny Speckled Pug
 Toadflax Pug
 Copper Underwing
 Old Lady
 Dark Swordgrass
 Six-striped Rustic
 Rosy Rustic
And my favourite moth trap of all, finally I got a Garden Tiger.