Trip reports

RSPB / NWT Thorpe Marshes, Friday, October 18th, 2019

RSPB / NWT Thorpe Marshes, Friday, October 18th, 2019
Andrew Chilvers

Friday, 18 October 2019

When it was time to join the walk one member and one visitor (guest) joined the other 10 people present along with our guide Chris Durdin. By this time it was just cloudy, no rain.
Chris is very good at identifying plants, trees and bushes however the first item he took us to was a tree stem where the Willow Emerald damselfly lay their eggs.
These damselflies are extending their range and can now be found all over Norfolk and Suffolk

Our focus tends to be on the bird life and on route a flock of goldfinches were seen, others seen included magpie, jay, crow, rook and seven Egyptian geese in flight. There were cormorants at the pond with two sunning themselves in the trees.
Swans and a pair of resident stonechats which have been there for at least three years that we know of were also seen.

The river was very high and likewise the lake hence a lack of waders however walking along the river moorings a lone mallard was observed.

Chris mentioned that snipe were lacking due to climate change, going north but still overwinter.

We were also shown pictures of these marshes as they were in the 1980's with cattle grazing along with a mobile milking machine used by the farmer for milk distribution thus making life easier. The land in these pictures looks nothing like is does now and the NWT has some white cattle to help graze the land to stop it becoming overgrown.

The walk finished just before mid-day and due to the early finish Chris offer to revisit the Willow Emerald site to see if they could be observed.

We believe the two from Lowestoft continued on but we had another commitment so left.

As for the weather you never know what it will be when you set out as the sun did shine with blue sky and it felt warm.

This guided walk is held is held regularly and details can be found in the NWT web site. At another time of the year different species will be present.

Sue Bayliss