It has been an interesting week here at Marshside with the weather pretty much dictating where the birds can go on the reserve. There have been some really strong (and cold) winds which have seen our birds struggling to get around - lets face it when you see a flock of pink footed geese flying backwards you know it's a windy day!!

Geese in reverse by Barry Smith

For those brave enough to face the conditions head on it's proved to be a rewarding experience, large flocks of wigeon were reported over on Sutton's marsh east, around 5000 were hunkered down against the wind. We've also seen 4000 golden plover and 2000 lapwing spending time in both the east and west areas of Sutton's marsh.

A great white egret has been touring the reserve and pochard, tufted duck, gadwall and little grebe have all been enjoying the high water levels. The winds today have been particularly strong and I have been out fixing some of our infrastructure that was damaged overnight. The water rail at Nel's hide continues to remain elusive as a number of people have heard it recently but not actually seen it......pretty much standard.

Wigeon on choppy waters by Barry Smith

Redshank, curlew, oystercatcher and black-tailed godwit have been feeding around the muddy areas and lagoons - further out in the marsh (amongst the brown hare) you'll see them spending their time probing in the soft earth for worms.

Out and about there has been a large flock of twite, long tailed tits and goldfinch - buzzard, merlin, peregrine and kestrel complete the report for this week.