"For now we are young let us lay in the sun and count every beautiful thing we can see" Neutral Milk Hotel.

Friday, 22 January 2016

Stonechats at Holme

There are at least three and almost certainly four pairs of Stonechats wintering on the reserve this year - these are birds along the Thornham Bank and at the far west end of the reserve on 17th January 2016





Sperm Whales at Hunstanton

Three or maybe four Sperm Whales were off Hunstanton late afternoon. One male became stranded on rocks below the cliffs and was still fighting to free itself as night fell and as the water ebbed........

Sperm Whale, Hunstanton, 22nd January 2016




Thursday, 21 January 2016

Lesser Centaury

Lesser Centaury (Centaurium pulchellum), Petalophyllum scrape, 21st January 2016.


Saturday, 16 January 2016

410 'new' species recorded in 2015: 3096 species recorded since January 1st 2014

During 2015, we recorded 410 species which we did not record in 2014.  We also rather belatedly identified 16 species to add to the 2014 total. This brings the grand total number of species recorded on the patch since 1st January 2014 to 3096.

The table below provides a list of the number of 'new' species recorded in 2015 in each of the major taxonomic groups. Most species were new to us and almost certainly new to the patch. For example, we recorded 124 beetles in 2015 which we had not done in 2014: 102 of these were entirely new to the patch.

A full list of new species recorded in 2015, plus the additional species for 2014 can be found under the 2015 tab.

A new master list tab will eventually host master lists of all the species ever recorded on the patch. The first list, for Beetles, is already loaded and contains the records for all 881 species recorded on the patch to date. We have recorded 707 of these since 1st January. The master lists will be updated periodically.

Species Group Total number of new species recorded on patch in 2015 Species Group Total number of new species recorded on patch in 2015
Annelida/Polychaeta
4
Fungi 
10
Araneae - Spiders
4
Hemiptera - True Bugs
54
Arthropoda/Crustacea
2
Hymenoptera - Bees, Wasps, Ants etc
19
Arthropoda/Diplura
1
Lepidoptera - Butterflies
1
Arthropoda/Myriapoda
2
Lepidoptera - Moths
48
Aves - Birds
14
Mites
5
Bryophytes
49
Neuroptera - Lacewings
1
Coleoptera - Beetles
124
Opiliones (Harvestmen)
3
Diptera - Flies
24
Odonata
2
Echinodermata
1
Plecoptera - Stoneflies
1
Ephemeroptera - Mayflies
3
Trichoptera - Caddisflies
8
Fish
6
Vascular Plants
24










GRAND TOTAL FOR 2015
410






TOTAL RECORDED IN 2014
2670


NEW IDENTIFICATIONS FOR 2014
16


GRAND TOTAL RECORDED SINCE 1st JANUARY 2014
3096

Friday, 15 January 2016

Blasts from the past.......


Little Gull, Hunstanton, 30th March 2013


Little Gull, Hunstanton, 31st March 2013


 Whooper Swans, Hunstanton, 30th October 2013


Kingfisher, Holme NWT,  27th January 2014



 Barnacle Geese, Holme NWT, 18th December 2010



Greenland White-fronted Goose, Holme NWT, 13th November 2011


Alpine Swift, Hunstanton, 26th March 2010



 Shags, Hunstanton, 15th October 2012



 Jack Snipe, Holme NWT, 8th April 2007


Rough-legged Buzzard, Holme NWT, 4th February 2012


Blast from the past......

Bittern, Holme NWT, 24th February 2014




Hunstanton's Red-leg Gang!

A group of Red-legged Partridges roam around gardens in the South of the town.  At the moment there are 6 individuals in the "gang" which includes at least one bred in 2015 and one with a lame leg (Hop-a-long!).  They are frequent visitors for food and can often be seen perched on top of bungalow roofs making their hoarse raucous calls.


Saturday, 9 January 2016

Divers, Mergansers, Grebes and Shags off Hunstanton Cliffs, 9th January 2016

A great day on the cliffs, with at least 3 Shags now in residence, including a bird bearing a dark green darvic ring (NUR), at least 12 Red-breated Mergansers, 6 Great Crested Grebes and single Red-throated, Black-throated and Great Northern Divers all offshore during the day.

Shag, Hunstanton, 9th January 2016 (ringed as a chick on the Farne Islands, Northumberland in 2015 and the first sighting of the bird since it fledged). 



Shag, Hunstanton, 9th January 2016


Shag, Hunstanton, 9th January 2016


Shag, Hunstanton, 9th January 2016


Great Northern Diver, off Hunstanton lighthouse, 9th January 2016


Tuesday, 5 January 2016

New Year Flowers

In the first 4 days of 2016 I have found 52 species of plants in flower. 48 of these have been in our patch, from the ubiquitous Daisy and Canadian Fleabane to the less prolific Common Fumitory and Shaggy-soldier.  The extremely mild weather has kept some species, such as Lesser Hawkbit and Yarrow, flowering much later whilst encouraging other species, such as Sweet Violet and Red Dead-nettle, to flower much earlier.  A single stem of Alexanders was in full flower as were several bushes of Gorse.  Out of our patch a single flowering stem of Winter Heliotrope stood proud above a large patch of leaves near Courtyard Farm and the first of the Winter Aconites were in flower at Summerfield.

New Years Birding

106 species already recorded, a monster movement of Teal noted at a ton of goodies on patch - four Snow Buntings, six Stonechats, 28 Twite, two Greenshanks, Great Northern Diver, six Long-tailed Ducks, Velvet Scoter, Great Skua, nine Little Gulls, Chiffchaff, Pintail, Gannet, two Firecrest, three Goosander and a Purple Sandpiper.


More amphibians...

   At 8 degrees had another walk up to the pines and found another active natterjack, and a big female at that 75mm from nose to tail! Rushed back for the camera but wasn't able to relocate it, so obviously pretty mobile! Back at The Firs the smooth newt was back in the same place as the other evening.

Sunday, 3 January 2016

The last or the first!!!


   A brief search this evening around The Firs, during mild and very wet conditions I found another large adult natterjack toad, it was a very mobile and looked in good health. Last night in slightly cooler conditions there was an adult smooth newt on the visitor centre's patio.