This time last year we were basking in glorious weather amidst a sustained heatwave. This year we’ve not been quite as lucky weather wise and it’s a touch soggy and much cooler today. It certainly hasn’t stopped the wildlife though.

Spoonbills are still our star attraction. 10 were counted on the lagoon at Ousefleet hide this morning and (when I visited) a solitary one at Marshland hide.

Photo credit Darren Johnson

You may notice too our Wardens and volunteers have been really busy this week cutting back new growth so that views are vastly improved. It’s a difficult decision when to cut back, juggling the needs of the wildlife at the reserve with being able to spot it from the hides. Only new growth is removed, growth that wasn’t there a couple of months ago, so that any impact is greatly reduced. It does make for a better chance of seeing those elusive water rail et. al.

Photo Credit Mike Pilsworth

Here’s one Warden Mike saw earlier today.

Look how clear the view is now – this was taken from Xerox hide.

Photo Credit Darren Johnson

We always strive to provide the best wildlife experiences we can.

Spotted Redshank are still favouring us with their presence as well. Groups have been moving round the reserve all week. Many have been mingling about the flock of lapwings, up to 460 birds, relying on the age old adage of safety in numbers. Marsh harriers, peregrine, sparrow hawk and kestrel regularly “scare up” the lapwings.

Indeed one member regaled his spotting a peregrine chasing after lapwing earlier in the week only to disturb a marsh harrier. The peregrine inadvisably dived straight at the harrier to be confronted by a hefty set of talons. The peregrine beat a hasty and wise retreat.

One of my favourite spots this week though was a sparrow hawk chasing goldfinch in front of reception hide. Yes you’re right I didn’t have my camera handy but caught this one a little later.

Photo Credit Darren Johnson

It wasn’t the only “LBJ” around Wren and Reed Warbler are still flitting around and Willow Warbler have been spotted as well.

Photo Credit Darren Johnson

Back to the fantastic waders though. Unconfirmed reports of a Bar Tailed Godwit came to our attention yesterday. But there’s still plenty of Black tailed godwits around.

Photo credit Mike Pilsworth.

This one was happy to pose with a snipe – which have also been giving great views across the reserve. They do tend to stick to the margins a lot so cutting back gives everyone a much better chance to see them up close.

Spotted Redshank, Redshank, Green Sandpiper, the odd Common Sandpiper, Dunlin, Ruff and Avocet have graced us with their presence.

Photo credit Mike Pilsworth

Photo Credit Darren Johnson

Avocet sifting through the famous Humber mud.

Photo Credit Darren Johnson

A group of lapwings, godwits and other waders.

It looks like the build up of waders looks set to continue.

I’ll leave you with one of my favourite sights – a group of Spoonbills at Ousefleet viewing screen lagoon.

Gratuitous advertising time!!

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