Trip reports

The Tales of a Trip First Timer - Titchwell 2009

little egret, wading, water

Sunday, 18 October 2009

After my recent first visit to the Lichfield local group meeting and my amazement at the numbers attending, I decided to join the visit to the Titchwell RSPB reserve in Norfolk. What seemed like a good idea at the time didn't seem quite so good when the alarm sounded at 6.00am on the day of the trip. Nevertheless, armed with my brand new Nikon scope I met my fellow travellers was greeted by Bob R. and we commenced the journey.

I have been a lifetime enthusiast in bird watching although my ID skills are somewhat lacking. Waders are a mystery and Gulls are a nightmare. I was therefore a bit nervous of being in the presence of experts so I thought the best approach would be to look and learn. I sat on my own on the coach initially but after a short time 'Andy' joined me. My hero Andy! What knowledge, what skills. We talked and talked. I learnt so much from him on the coach and at the reserve. I had asked him if I could shadow him round the reserve and he was more than happy for me to accompany him.

Titchwell was fantastic for, me over 30 (yes 30) firsts. I didn't know where to look next. But, if Andy and other group members hadn't been to hand to question I probably wouldn't have ID'd a third of the birds. We must have walked miles. A Turnstone here, an Avocet there, marvellous. I managed to stay on my feet and not trip over the tripod legs and Andy helped me with getting the best out of my scope. A brilliant day. The highlights, undoubtedly the snow buntings (a wonderful little group), the grey phalarope (what a name!) and the shore lark (another lovely bird).

A great day and a big thank you to everyone who helped me and made me so welcome. I will become a regular from now on and I look forward to the next trip. (The waders are still a mystery though!!).