All Quiet On The Western Front

Desperate to blow the holiday cobwebs away I picked up The Llama and our latest recruit The Hooded Birder and set off East into Norfolk yesterday morning. The two Andys were keen to tick the Western Sand but on the way we decided we’d stop at Fakenham for a look at the interesting Great Grey Shrike. The site was easy to find and after a bit of searching the bird flew in and landed above the Andys and then into it’s favoured hedge. The wind was already getting up so reasonable video/digiscope shots were going to be near impossible. What did strike us all was just how pallid the bird was and the extent of white in the wing, especially in flight. It may not be pure homeyeri but it’s not pure excubitor either and I hope one of the Russian experts gets to see the images and footage available to make a guess.

Great Grey Shrike

Great Grey Shrike

Great Grey Shrike

Great Grey Shrike

I also attach this video grab that shows the large amount of white in the tail and if anyone knows how I take a video grab in, say, Windows media player please email me SIMPLE instructions!

Moving on to Cley we paid our entrance fee and headed off for the peep. It appears we missed it by not much in front of the hide and despite much searching of Cricket’s Marsh we failed to relocate it… even Micky Maher couldn’t find it. Well seeing as The Llama and I failed to pick out a winter plumaged Maher and he failed to spot winter plumaged a Llama or Drunkbirder that’s probably no surprise.

Disappointed we retired to the visitor centre for a hoy drink while The Hooded Birder menaced an old couple… time to leave.

Thanks to Andy Mackay for the blog title.

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2 responses to “All Quiet On The Western Front

  1. thedrunkbirder

    An interesting shot here from the Birds of Kazakhstan website http://www.birds.kz/Lanius%20excubitor%20homeyeri/largee.html?3&36

    Full link to the homeyeri Great Grey Shrike here http://www.birds.kz/Lanius%20excubitor%20homeyeri/indexe.html

  2. Thanks for the pics. I saw the bird today, and my first Great Grey Shrike, so no further comment to make other than it’s a beautiful bird!

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