Friday 1 February 2008

North Norfolk Trip

I had a few days in north Norfolk last weekend, an area I've only really visited once before, but one I wanted to see again. The area around Cley (pronounced to rhyme with 'eye') is a beautiful region, with large areas of saltmarsh, beaches, farmland and lakes, and it's a mecca for all sorts of birds.

First stop was at Holkham, as there is a large roost of Pink-Footed Geese on the marshes here, but as I'm not a wildlife photographer, I don't really own the required lenses to get a close crop in on the birds, which tend to stay at a fair distance. However, I was more than happy with shots like this one looking across the reed beds.

Pink-Footed Geese roost at Holkham, Norfolk, but views across the reed beds are beautiful in themselves.

The next day saw a trip into Cley itself, to visit the Norfolk Wildlife Trust visitor centre and reserve, briefly stopping off to see the White Crowned Sparrow which had arrived from North America a couple of weeks before.

White Crowned Sparrow at Cley, Norfolk

It was quite surprising how many birdwatchers and twitchers (there is a difference) were there to see it...

Bird watchers and Twitchers at Cley, Norfolk, to see the White Crowned Sparrow, January 2008

Sunday midday was spent at Pensthorpe Nature Reserve & Gardens, home to a wide variety of mainly wetland birds on both the lakes and within aviaries. There's also a few mammals there too, Red Squirrels in an enclosure and on 'Squirrel Island', but also Otters in the river Wensum which runs through the reserve, and at least one Stoat, which unfortunately was far too quick for me!

Here are some of the shots I got there:

A Puna Teal at Pensthorpe Nature Reserve and Gardens, Norfolk
A Puna Teal

A Lapwing, in one of the aviaries at Pensthorpe Nature Reserve and Gardens, Norfolk
A Lapwing, in one of the aviaries.

A Baikal Teal in one of the aviaries at Pensthorpe Nature Reserve and Gardens, Norfolk
A Baikal Teal in one of the aviaries.

A sleeping Red Squirrel in an enclosure at Pensthorpe Nature Reserve and Gardens, Norfolk
A sleeping Red Squirrel in an enclosure, probably my favourite shot of the trip, either that one or the Baikal Teal...

Later in the afternoon saw a visit to the beach at Wells-next-the-Sea, where there are some lovely, and varied beach huts, as well as miles of sand, assuming you get there at low tide.

Beach Huts at Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk

Beach Hut at Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk

Monday was the last day of the trip, but before leaving the B&B (Holly Lodge Guesthouse, in Thursford Green, very much recommended) I had to take a few shots of the dewy grass and moss on the wall in the garden.

Moss on garden wall, Thursford Green, Norfolk

Dew drop on grass, Thursford, Norfolk

It was an excellent trip which yielded some great photos for me, and I can't wait to go back.


Scraps of Bev said...

Hi Daniel..That looked like a most enjoyable trip and to a beautiful part of the country.. when you think this is really not far from our lives here in Essex..perhaps we should all move further up the coast!

Super collection of photo's and I have to agree with you my favourite photo is also of the 'sleeping squirrel'

I'm sure you're already planning on entering this in a competition and also having some prints done, if not, you should be!!


Anonymous said...

You didn't say you saw the (in)famous white crowned sparrow! I do like the squirrel and lapwing. I too think you should enter the squirrel into a competition

Anonymous said...

Indeed it is a fantastic part of the country. Been based in Cromer a couple of times, and roamed through many parts of Norfolk and Suffolk. Lovely countryside.