Trip reports

Visit to Strumpshaw Fen and Buckenham Marshes

Visit to Strumpshaw Fen and Buckenham Marshes
Buckenham Marshes looking West (Photo: Peter Berrill)

Sunday, 22 January 2012

We chased the rain across three counties and fortunately never caught it up, which left us with a brilliantly sunny day with a strong cold wind.

Before we'd all disembarked the coach at the Visitor Centre, the keen photographers amongst us had already bagged a bittern seeing off a marsh harrier.

After introducing ourselves to the Centre Staff, the majority of members made their way to Buckenham Marshes to hopefully see some geese. Crossing the marsh towards the River Yare we encountered many wigeon which seemed almost oblivious to the passing birders, affording good views. A few greylag and barnacle geese grazed in the distance and next to them a pair of egyptian geese.

A manic Chinese water deer charged around briefly looking for non-existent cover putting up a few lapwing in its path.

Lunch was taken in the shelter of the Buckenham Ferry Drainage Mill where we watched several thousand golden plover sweep back and forth flashing gold then white in the bright sunshine; presumably spooked by one of the reported three peregrines on site!

Five of the group pressed on towards Cantley Marshes and were duly rewarded with good views of taiga bean geese and the star bird of the day, a lesser white-fronted goose.

On returning to the Visitor Centre, Katie our Wildlife Explorer proudly showed us her stunning photograph of a flying bittern; to the envy of her photographer father.

There was still time to watch three marsh harriers of the reported eleven pairs that come into roost, before departing for home.

Peter and Lesley Berrill