14th January 2015 – Back on Track


After the disappointing performance from the owls last week in the very windy weather we have (not) been enjoying recently, a return to relatively calmer conditions prompted another visit to check up on the birds. The good news is that they are all still present and correct and performing well again.

A quick stop on the way also confirmed the presence of one of the local Little Owls, basking in the morning sunshine. Check!

The afternoon walk out across the marshes was bright and sunny, with a moderate but blustery wind. However, this was nowhere near as strong as it has been. As a consequence, the Short-eared Owls were soon out doing their stuff.

P1100938P1100939P1100941P1100951Short-eared Owls – a great performance today from at least two birds

At least two birds were out hunting, quartering back and forth across the marshes, occasionally dropping down onto the ground and looking round furtively. They have a remarkable ability to disappear into the grass at times, but would soon be back flying round again, making the most of the favourable weather.

On several occasions, one of the Short-eared Owls would set off aggressively after the second, chasing after it with exaggerated wingbeats, even wing-clapping a couple of times, where it holds its wings pointing downwards and claps them together rapidly, to warn off its competitor. This chase would often culminate in them soaring up into the sky with talons out towards each other, though they didn’t lock together and tumble towards the ground while I was watching them today, as I have seen them doing previously (I have put up a short video on YouTube of them doing this here).

There was also a Barn Owl out hunting in the afternoon. Amongst the other highlights were the two Rough-legged Buzzards hovering over the marshes, two White-fronted Geese amongst the flocks of Pink-footed Geese and thousands of Golden Plover and Lapwing swirling overhead. And lots more besides.

P1100953Barn Owl – also out hunting this afternoon

I am in the process of adding some additional dates for Owl Tours to the itinerary, so please check the website if you are interested in coming out to see some owls (please remember that their performance is very subject to prevailing weather conditions, though we do see lots of other good birds even when the owls are not performing as they should!).

Marcus Nash  www.birdtour.co.uk

{{ reviewsTotal }}{{ options.labels.singularReviewCountLabel }}
{{ reviewsTotal }}{{ options.labels.pluralReviewCountLabel }}
{{ options.labels.newReviewButton }}
{{ userData.canReview.message }}

Stay up to date with the Latest News!

Upcoming Tours

We have a very varied programme of scheduled Group Tours in Norfolk and beyond planned for the year ahead.

We also offer Customised Private Tours. You can read more here or please contact us with your requirements

Knot flock
Wader Spectacular
25th Aug
Pied Flycatcher
Autumn Migration
15th Sep
Knot flock
Autumn Migration & Wader Spectacular
20th Sep -
22nd Sep
Pallas's Warbler
Autumn Migration
17th Oct -
20th Oct
Grey Phalarope
Late Autumn Tour
1st Nov -
3rd Nov
Hen Harrier
Late Autumn Tour
9th Nov
Pied Kingfisher
The Gambia – Birding the Smiling Coast
15th Nov -
22nd Nov
Early Winter Tour
29th Nov -
1st Dec
Short-eared Owl
Winter Wildfowl, Cranes & Owls
6th Jan -
9th Jan
Common Cranes
Winter Weekend
25th Jan -
26th Jan
Rufous-bellied Niltava
Thailand – Forktails, Flycatchers & Spoon-billed Sandpiper
3rd Feb -
21st Feb
Winter Birds, Brecks & Goshawks
28th Feb -
2nd Mar

Gift Vouchers

If you would like to give a gift to someone who is interested in birds then a gift voucher from The Bird ID Company is an ideal present.

The vouchers can be flexible, and used against any tour or tours over the following 12 months, or can be bought for a specific tour.