Crowd Pleaser

Nice to get out at the weekend.  We have the builders in and everything is a bit all over the place as we have lost the use of three rooms for a few weeks, the ‘kitchen’ is now a camping stove and microwave in a tiny spare bedroom.  The sun was shining but the wind was still a bit cool.  After a bit of deliberation it was decided we should go along the North Norfolk coast to see if we could locate a very rare goose that has been in the Cley/Salthouse area this past couple of weeks.

The goose in question has been hanging around with a mobile flock of Brent Geese (Branta bernicla) so I slowly drove past the marshes as Mrs H scanned the fields.  A flock was spotted just past Salthouse village but it was distant and there was no where to stop safely.  I carried on and thought I would try down Beach Road in Cley.  A van was parked by a field gate and my faithful spotter called out “geese!”  Sure enough they were Brents and a quick scan revealed our ‘target’.

The most beautiful goose in the world? Red-breasted Goose (Branta ruficollis)

Now that is a goose definitely worth looking out for.  A little phrase in England for such a beauty is ‘Bobby Dazzler’.  A bit of caution must be taken when seeing these birds in the wild and that includes any rare or exotic species, are they really ‘wild’ or have they hopped over a fence from an ornamental wildfowl collection?  Well it seems this fellow is as good as it can possibly get to being the ‘real deal’.  It wasn’t long before other birders turned up, word travels fast in the rare bird world, and soon there were dozens “oohing” and “aahing” and to make it better it was very close to the road, just the swaying reeds in the roadside ditch making photography tricky at times.

Our boy was more than a little bit vocal!
And at times a bit feisty!

So where does it come from?  The Red-breasted Goose breeds in Arctic Siberia on the Taymyr Peninsula (the same area as some Brent Geese).  They over-winter near the Black Sea coast of Romania, Bulgaria and to a lesser extent Northern Greece and a Country in most peoples thoughts right now, Ukraine.  Sometimes the Red-breasted will join the Brents and head west into Europe and pitch up in the Low Countries mostly the Netherlands.  Then it’s a short hop over the North Sea to England.  This one turned up, with another of it’s kind, in Essex.  The Brent Geese flock then split up with half heading north up to Norfolk with this one among them.

Some more Brents come to join the party

45 thoughts on “Crowd Pleaser

  1. From time to time you can find such ducks here with us. Often they are captive escapees and from breeding. I couldn’t see a ring in your photos. You often see breeder rings and not those of ringing centers.
    Anyway, congratulations on your observation dear Brian.
    I wish you a peaceful time
    let us all live in peace……

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Werner. It is believed this bird to be wild and you are correct it has no rings. It was lovely to see it!
      Yes, let’s all live in peace and hope for a quick end to this horrific crisis.


  2. Brian, WOW… that one is indeed a Bobby Dazzler! Good grief she’s a Beuhte, as we might say in Texas, where we butcher the English language. 😄

    Btw, she’s a “standout,” huh? A one-of-a-kind in a world (or field) of Brent banality, huh? 😉

    Liked by 1 person

      1. P.S. If you’d like, makes me no big difference, my real name is Dwain. I share that only with good-people. And if they are also footballing fanatics like myself, then they are even MORE très spécial. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ah Prof I shall keep that secret and probably give you the code Mr D 😉
        My Canaries beaten again by the Kloppites (4th time this season!) last night 1-2 in the FA cup 5th round. They only managed to score 2 so that must count as a moral victory for us? Surprised the Joberg Red has not appeared to rub salt into the wounds 😥🐤🏆

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow, that is a stunner of a Goose – nice tin! At first thought it might be an Egyptian but quickly dismissed that. You can thank the show Curse of Oak Island for me knowing what a Bobby Dazzler is (they go with “top pocket finds” ha!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. That truly is a “crowd pleaser”!

    It’s always exciting to find an unusual visitor and when it’s as gorgeous as this goose, it’s doubly exciting! Your photographs would indicate the new lens is doing just fine in your capable hands.

    Very happy to hear you were able to get out for a bit. Hope your renovation goes quickly and smoothly.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Wally. Yes, the lens is working fine though I’m still learning to hold it steadier.
      Hoping the house work goes well but it seems to be throwing up the odd un-forseen problem.


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