On the 2nd November:
A weekend in Norfolk, at Snettisham seeing lots of waders, 4 Red-breasted Mergansers and a male Ring Ouzel. Between Snettisham and Cley we saw 3 Waxwings and 3 Red-legged Partridges, both new birds for us. At Cley there was a flock of 60+ Snow Buntings, again new birds for us.
An overnight drive to North Norfolk, where at Holme along the track to the observatory there was a Lesser Grey Shrike, a new bird for us.We watched the shrike perched on the fence and telephone wires, often dropping to the ground to feed, during the 2 hours we were there it flew to within around 12 feet of us at closest, also seen to cough-up a pellet.
Also at Holme we saw 2 Snow Buntings, c50 Twite, a Short-toed Lark, a Whinchat, 6 Red-breasted Mergansers and lots of Brent Geese.
Later, we went to Snettisham where we saw a Kingfisher, Grey Plovers, c35 Little Grebes, lots of Dunlin, an eared owl and 7 Pink-footed Geese, which were new birds for us.
Lesser Grey Shrike drawing by Laurel Tucker.
A day at Chew Valley Lake where we saw 14 Goldeneyes, 20 Goosanders, 9 Bewick's Swans, 3 Shags, a few waders including 3 Green Sandpipers, a Tree Sparrow, 6 Redpolls, a Wheatear and a Tawny Owl.
An early morning drive to Pagham Harbour to see an adult Sora Rail, a new British bird for me. Also seen in the area was a Red-necked Grebe, 6 Slavonian Grebes, 8 Little Grebes, 18 Great Crested Grebes, 8 Eiders, 13 Red-breasted Mergansers, a Long-tailed Duck, 2 Razorbills, c130 Ruff, 800+ Dunlin, a Little Stint, lots of Redshank and Lapwing, c50 Turnstone, 3 Bar-tailed Godwits, 8 Black-tailed Godwits, 500+ Grey Plovers and 80+ Oystercatchers.
Then an evening drive north to Suffolk.
A visit to Chew Valley Lake seeing lots of duck, including a Green-winged Teal, also a 1st winter Mediterranean Gull.
In North Carolina on a BBC sound recording trip, a travel day, a flight to New York then another to Ithaca in New York State, to stay with friend and fellow sound recordist Greg Budney, from the Macaulay Library at Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology.
In Madagascar on a BBC sound recording trip, 10 new birds seen today.
In the garden in Portishead, there were 2 Bramblings today, a male and a 1st winter male.