Trip reports

Coach trip to Minsmere 14th February

Coach trip to Minsmere 14th February
Stonechat by Ben Hall (

Saturday, 14 February 2015

It was almost a full coach to Minsmere today, fully booked but there were the inevitable last-minute drop-outs which left three empty seats. The RSPB put on a cracking day for us; OK the sun didn't sun, but then the wind didn't wind and the rain didn't rain on us either. When we arrived a very nice man gave us each a numbered sticker to wear - I was number 346 and felt very honoured. I've never been a 346 before.

Then we went out onto the reserve where within a few steps of the visitor centre we found one of the local stonechats on duty at the top of a bare tree; very well placed for the visitors to get a good view, I thought. And when we arrived at the beach we found they had thoughtfully put some red-throated divers for us to find out on the 'oggin, so we all had a good look at them through various 'scopes. And after seeing other birds along the coastal path and heading inland we passed a pool on the left. I thought the provision of a pair of whooper swans here was a nice touch - very thoughtful of someone.

Altogether we logged 72 species for the day including an obliging bittern and an excellent show at the Island Mere hide by the Minsmere Aerobatic Display Team, the marsh harriers. We departed at four o'clock, giving plenty of time for the resident birds to be stood down. We should have liked to have stayed longer but then the RSPB would have been paying all these birds overtime rates and that would have been rather churlish, don't you think?

post by Derik Palmer

If you would like to see some pictures taken by Jon Perry on the day follow this link to his Flickr album: