29th Nov -
1st Dec 2024

Early Winter Tour

A 3-day tour looking for winter birds mainly on the North Norfolk coast.

Early Winter

Large numbers of birds come here to spend the colder months, including wildfowl, waders, birds of prey and owls, and by December most of our winter visitors should be here in good numbers. There should be large numbers of geese, particularly huge flocks of Pink-footed Geese commuting between their roost sites on the coast and the harvested sugar beet fields inland, where they feed. Sometimes a rarer goose may be mixed in with them, and in some years it is a good time to find Tundra Bean Geese in the flocks. There is always a good selection of ducks and waders to see too at this time of year.

Our over-wintering Shorelarks are always one of the highlights of the season here, and should be back in residence by this time, and there may be flocks of Snow Buntings too. It is a good time for raptors and we will go to a site to watch for Hen Harriers and Merlin coming in to roost at dusk. In some years we may have a Rough-legged Buzzard around for the winter as well.

It is always worth checking the sea and December can be a good time of year for scarcer divers and grebes on the coast. In northerly winds, there might be a late Little Auk or maybe even a Pomarine Skua could be blown inshore.

There are still often surprises to be found! We saw rarities like Hume’s Warbler and Long-billed Dowitcher on this tour in 2022, as well as a Long-eared Owl. In some years, flocks of Waxwings come over from Scandinavia to feed on berries here and this is a good time of year to look for them.

We would expect to see around 100-120 species across the three days.

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.