November was a changeable month weather wise but it did enable some decent spells of seawatching as well as on land bringing no less than 4 New Birds for the patch!
Sun 3rd Nov
This single Brambling was a nice sight from the kitchen window, mixed in with a large flock of Goldfinches.
Tues 5th Nov
I got word in the afternoon of a large movement of Gannet and Kittiwakes all heading east, it wasn't long before I had gotten myself geared up and was heading round to the clifftop and what a spectacle it turned out to be, and the numbers of birds passing were in their hundreds.
There were a lot of young Gannets passing and this Peregrine circled overhead which immediately drew the attentions of the local Kestrels, who drove it further along the coast.
Wed 6th Nov
After the previous days movement I again set up on the clifftop to see what stragglers were still moving through and also in the hope of catching up with one of the numerous Pomarine Skuas that were being reported off the coasts. I watched Brent geese, common scoter and auks passing then I watched a commotion going on with some gulls just along the front from me?
.....SKUA.... it had to be surely?
As it chased the gulls with no joy of getting one to disgorge its food, it headed towards me. by now I was snapping as many shots as possible and as it came closer I was buzzing with the thought of getting a POM! And a New Patch Tick.
Fri 8th Nov
Sadly the Pallid Swift that was showing well just along the coast at Sidestrand did not venture towards Trimingham, despite frantically getting to the cliffs in the hope it would pass through there was no more sightings in either direction, just a male Goosander overhead to ease the pain!
Fri 15th Nov
This group of Gadwall were a welcome addition to my Patch List.
Sat 16th Nov
A message from one of the local boys of a Great Grey Shrike near the main clifftop wood had me in a state of panic, grabbing my gear I set off at a pace and a few minutes later I was with the finder trying to locate where the bird had got to, flying from the cliff slopes it headed straight for the main wood on the clifftop. After searching the edges with no luck we slowly moved through the wood, after a short time we picked up a commotion going on between a robin and wren! a good sign something was stressing them out and sure enough we located the Shrike, tucked in a privet copse with freshly caught prey which looked like a vole. It had no doubt caught it in the grassy slopes and then had flown into the wood to devour it.
After finishing the meal off it promptly moved to the outer edge of the wood before disappearing back into it, and after carefully checking around the outside edge of the wood and no further sign of the bird for some time, we thought it must of departed straight out the other side and so I decided to bid farewell to Simon and thanked him for this much appreciated New Patch Tick and head home. As I walked off along the track I casually glanced around to look at the hedgeline adjacent to the wood and low and behold what was sitting up top.....GGS! Where it had been hiding out or indeed just watching us walk beneath it perhaps I don't know but it wasn't there when we walked past and checked. Time to turn and head back and this time it stayed put and gave us both a fantastic showing before it headed off inland...now it was time to head home...with such a buzz you could of called me a bee!!
Mon 18th Nov
Seawatching again today and a great spectacle and another New Patch Tick!
As any flock of wildfowl came in range I would check in the hope of a Long tailed duck, this flock though were Wigeon, and whilst following them I witnessed them all of a sudden shoot straight up into the air as if slamming into a glass window? Then I picked up why...a Peregrine Falcon had shot straight into the flock in the hope of connecting with one.
In the photo below the Peregrine is on the left to the front of the group.
Here you can see the Peregrine had seperated the flock and homed in on a couple, they promptly dived straight into the water to evade it, it then moved away and the wigeon continued on their way.
And my next Patch Tick came in a pair of Red Breasted Mergansers.
Fri 29th Nov
I spent a few hours today checking the seas, even if it's quiet I still enjoy the peacefulness and the thought that anything could pass through, you just don't know? There had been a few groups of duck through with Eider, Common Scoter and a single female Goldeneye so there were birds passing even if not continually. Red throated divers were passing through and then I picked out a larger diver coming my way.... Great Northern Diver. An excellent bird to finish the month on, I had been waiting for one to pass what with all the sightings coming through, so this was a great diver and great addition to the Patch List which jumped up to 172.
Great Northern Diver