Our second day up in Norfolk dawned with yet more rain forecast, so rather than get wet along the exposed coast, we decided we'd rather get wet inland instead! (-: Our destination was the Hawk and Owl Trust reserve at Sculthorpe near Fakenham.
I'd not been to this reserve before and thought it was a great place. It had a good broadwalk and good spacious hides with close feeding stations. If the weather had been brighter, I'd have been able to get some great photos of feeding woodland birds.
All in all, the following shots were the best I could manage in the circumstances. This female Brambling (at the top of the photo) was pretty shy, but spent a few seconds taking sunflower seeds from under the main feeder before disappearing.
It's always nice to get to see Bullfinches. They're not so common as to be overlooked through being too familiar. This male was feeding well.
Here he is on the feeder table with a pair of Chaffinches. His 'bull neck' shows very well here.
Apologies for the rubbish photo, but I put it in because it shows some of the other birds visiting this busy feeder. Theres a female Chaffinch on the right and one flying in. A Robin on the front, a Coal Tit front centre and the drabber female Bullfinch there at the back.
Here's a slightly better view of the female Bullfinch with a Robin about to crash land!
The pair eventually got together to feed. In the past, Bullfinches have been controlled, specially in areas where there are commercial fruit orchards as they have a tendancy to nibble fruit buds. I'm not sure if this still goes on. Maybe someone can tell me?
Walking around the reserve, I came across some beautiful birch trunks. In the dull weather, they seemed to glow.
There were several types of fungi around the woodland. I don't know their names, but they were very photogenic!
My favourite bird whilst walking around the reserve was this stunning male Golden Pheasant. I wish he'd come out into the open so that his amazing plumage could be seen more. Unfortunately he was hunkered down out of the rain, so I had to use manual focus to get a shot of him through the twigs. As far as I'm aware, this gorgeous pheasant is only breeding in Britain in a very few areas of Norfolk. Click to enlarge.
These last two photos were taken away from Sculthorpe reserve. We just came across this lovely carpet of white Snowdrops and yellow Winter Aconite, so I nipped out of the car for a couple of quick snaps.
I'll definitely want to revisit Sculthorpe reserve when I'm next up in Norfolk again.