Trip reports

Visit to RSPB Minsmere Nature Reserve

Reedbed and sea at Minsmere

Sunday, 23 September 2007

Leaving Coventry at the crack of dawn we travelled along the A14 into the rising sun, not sure what to expect from the weather. We needn't have worried, the day remained warm and sunny with a brisk northerly wind.

Why does the last five miles to your destination always seem to take forever?

Disembarking from the coach we headed for the nature centre to announce our arrival, collect our trail guides and the very useful 'What's About?' sheet, produced daily by the staff.

Heading for the beach we had early sightings of a marsh harrier and in the reedbed a lucky few were able to catch a fleeting glimpse of a bearded tit. The sand dunes afforded a lovely view of Sole Bay and the distant Southwold. What a contrast looking in the other direction and seeing Sizewell's huge dome! One or two terns passed-by off shore, they like to feed at the power station's outfall.

Stonechats and a wheatear were observed along the path towards the east hide. The scrape held all the usual suspects; gulls, ducks, geese and waders, including spotted redshank, curlew sandpiper, little stint, and an increased number of little egrets.

After a picnic lunch by the sluice we converged on the Bittern Hide. No bittern, but a kingfisher performed in the nearest pool, marsh harriers quartered the reeds and a hobby hunted over a distant wood.

Returning to the centre we encountered a very mobile tit flock that also included marsh tit, nuthatch and treecreeper. What a lovely end to the day!

Peter & Lesley Berrill