Trip reports

Minsmere RSPB Reserve

Wheatear in spring

Thursday, 22 March 2012

The good weather had brought out lots of people but it was not too crowded. We headed for the North Hide with Chiffchaff and Wheatear on our wish list. Within a few minutes a pair of Goldcrests gave us a great display as they flitted about in the bushes by the pond quickly followed by a Chiffchaff much to everyone's delight. The view from the hides was very hazy but we still managed to see a good many birds. The second bird on our wish list, the Wheatear, was seen from the North wall along with Mistle Thrushes. A scan of the sea produced a Great Crested Grebe and a Cormorant. Waders were in short supply, plenty of lapwing, a few Avocets and excitement over a lone Redshank but lots of Blackheaded Gulls preparing to nest. On the way back to the Visitor Centre Bearded Tits and Marsh Harriers were spotted.

After a picnic in the sunshine six members continued the walk to Island Mere where we were rewarded with good views of Snipe. On the return some of us were lucky enough to see a Woodcock fly across the footpath and then spot a Treecreeper. We had heard Nuthatch several times and at last one was seen just before we arrived at the visitor centre. We all agreed it was an excellent day thanks to David Jeffries who had obviously arranged for the birds to be in the right place.

Birds seen :- Chaffinch, Great Tit, Greenfinch, Coal Tit, Dunnock, Blue Tit, Pied Wagtail, Magpie, Pheasant, Black-headed Gull, Goldcrest, Robin, Chiffchaff, Greylag Goose, Lapwing, Moorhen, Shoveller, Teal, Coot, Wigeon, Redshank, Canada Goose, Shelduck, Red-legged Partridge, Oystercatcher, Crow, Long-tailed Tit, Wheatear, Mistle Thrush, Reed Bunting, Great Crested Grebe, Cormorant, Mallard, Avocet, Turnstone, Great Black-backed Gull, Common Gull, Pintail, Gadwall, Tufted Duck, Wood Pigeon, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull, Mute Swan, Marsh Harrier, Little Grebe, Bearded Tit, Barnacle Goose, Dunlin, Marsh Tit, Blackbird, Nuthatch, Collard Dove, Jackdaw, Pochard, Snipe, Woodcock, Treecreeper, Goldfinch.

Birds heard :- Cetti's Warbler, Wren, Green Woodpecker.

Also seen were many rabbits and squirrels, a Muntjac and several Red Deer. Two large herds were also seen when leaving the reserve.

Jane Bond