The perfect late spring? How about sunny, warm weather; a profusion of wildlife; and cool, green lanes to wander down. Right now, Old Moor and its satellite reserves have it all!

Here’s what was seen at Old Moor today (with a little flavour of Adwick Washland, Wombwell Ings and Edderthorpe Flash thrown in)…

As I was photographing the sightings book tonight, one visitor asked about bittern sightings. She explained, though she knew they were doing well at Old Moor, she hadn’t been able to see one today.

I understand the frustrations only too well. Seeing a rare and shy bird like a bittern is a question of narrowing down the odds. Even then, you may be disappointed – though not with your efforts!

My advice? Settle yourself in the Bittern Hide. Then focus your binoculars on the reedbed behind the pool there. Slowly scan backwards and forwards. Look out for any gull commotion which – if it happens – might give you a ‘heads up’. Wait and give it time.

Chris Aspital visited Old Moor less than a week ago and obviously found a four-leafed clover on the way! Lucky for us, he carried a camera. Chris explained that, around one o’clock, he walked down to the Reedbed Screen when he saw two bitterns flying across Reedbed One, near the Observation Hide.

Bittern in flight, one of a pair! Thanks Chris.

Ann Halstead made her first visit to Old Moor on Sunday and among other things was captivated by the great tits using the nest boxes near the Visitor Centre. Here’s her image of one of them returning with some grub. Thanks Ann.

By the way, both Chris and Ann shared their photos via our Facebook page, though you can email them in too. We love seeing them. Just ask for details on your next visit.

For me, it was the common terns that stole the show today. These terrific little acrobats are great to watch and today five were reported at Old Moor. Known for their ability to hover and plummet from a height after small fish, here’s one leaving the water after an unsuccessful dive.

Until next time.

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