Trip reports

Visit to Rainham Marshes

Visit to Rainham Marshes
Rainham Marshes looking west towards Visitor Centre (Photo: Peter Berrill)

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Having missed the turn for the reserve and retraced our steps we were greeted by a staff member in the car park who escorted us to the Visitor Centre.

Inside we were briefed about the reserve and split into two escorted groups. Our group followed the Thames 'embankment' while the other group followed the Eurostar 'embankment'. Both groups passing one another about half way round the reserve.

A peregrine perched on one of the many electricity pylons dominating the edge of the reserve; occasionally taking flight and putting up the large lapwing flock. Handsome stonechats sat on fence posts while secretive water rails squeeled in the reedbeds and a skylark sang joyously overhead. The majority of our group were lucky enough to see a glaucous gull as it took flight before being forced down by mobbing gulls.

Back at the Centre the elusive over-wintering serin, was spotted by a lucky few with the greenfinches on the feeders.

A long walk back along the top of the Thames 'embankment' was worth the effort for the stunningly close views of a newly arrived slavonian grebe whose every dive seemed to produce a fish and some group members managed to pick out the two 'beanies' amongst the greylag.

We thoroughly enjoyed our day and look forward to visiting again in the not too distant future!

Peter and Lesley Berrill