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We have had a green wing tagged juvenile Marsh Harrier on the reserve since 10th September but it took an age to get a good enough view of it to be able to read the black letters ZR on each wing.
The moment we read the letter - 10th October - David Element
With this information it did not take long to track down where it had come from via the BTO website.
It was ringed on the 3rd June 2018 on Haddiscoe Marshes in the upper Norfolk Broads and is a young male and had travelled at least 92 miles on a direct course to be on our reserve.
To start with we were only seeing him occasionally and indeed on the 11th he popped over to RSPB Wallasea Wetlands just north of Southend for the day.
ZR visiting Wallasea on 11th October - Tony Cartright
Those 24 straight-line miles were covered quickly and he was back with is the following day and almost every day since with occasional forays across the Thames onto Dartford Marsh in Kent including yesterday.
Our own two pairs had six young this year but those offspring have dispersed leaving us with one adult pair. These have now been joined by a sub-adult male and five different young birds including ZR so the skies are once again busy with Harrier action and the Teal, Snipe, Skylarks and Starlings have to be on the lookout for a pouncing talons.
He was still present today (1st November) and was playing with a slightly older juvenile male out on the marsh where he engaged in some good talon grappling and even grass carrying,
Playing tag with our adult female on 30th October - Tony O'Brien