First Minsmere visit of 2022 - glorious weather and a wing-tagged marsh harrier!

It was a very cold but absolutely beautiful day as Limpy and I arrived at Minsmere on Thursday.  Our first port of call was the Island Mere hide and Limpy lost no time in getting out of the car and heading down the path:

He's very determined.

We'd only been at the hide for a few minutes when I saw a large bird flying across the reedbed:

Yay, my first bittern in ages!  I love herons and it's always a bonus to see this particular one.

I was pleased to get some clear shots of this wing-tagged marsh harrier.  He's looking good!

There were several about, all looking gloriously beautiful in the sunshine.

After heading to the Visitor Centre our next stop was South Hide.  There was plenty to see here:

Two lovely dunlin.

A male teal.  Love those colours and markings.

One of many lapwings in flight.

Surely this innocent great black-backed gull couldn't have spooked all those lapwings into panic?  

A pair of wigeon heading out.

The three dunlin manage to avoid disturbing the shoveler.  Just as well, that's quite a beak!

I don't often manage to get these in flight so I was happy with this.

This male shoveler looked a bit worried at having a long lens pointing at him.  Relax, I'm not a wildfowler.

This female shoveler (and her massive beak) looked beautiful in the afternoon light.

After South Hide I headed for the beach, where I found a sunbather:

It was good to see this herring gull, though it's too early in the year for the grey streaks to have gone from its head.

This obliging turnstone was on the concrete groyne.  I love turnstones.

Always nice to see a meadow pipit

The stonechats were showing very well.

OK, I got a bit carried away with the stonechats.  They are just too irresistible!

This was on one of the WW2 concrete blocks near the entrance to East Hide.  I thought the message was spot on.

Our final stop was at the North Hide.  Cue more herons:

A beautiful little egret.

Yay!  The great white egret flies in.

What a stunner.

Finishing with this crow from the car park.  Hope you all enjoyed these.

Our herring gulls are red listed birds.  Think about that the next time you hear some flaming idiot calling for a cull of them.

  • Hi Clare,,
    A beautiful set of photos from a lovely day. I know it was a lovely day, I was just north of you at Dunwich at the time.
    You also got so cracking flight shots and I always love a posing Stonechat.
    Thanks for posting,
    Trevor
  • Welcome back Clare, great to see your lovely pics again, and all of them cracking and named too which always helps me:-) I too have a soft spot for the Stonechat - well it's the way they stand there on the very top of the bush looking so beautiful, mind you that Crow was doing a good imitation:-)

    Lot to learn

  • Wonderful photos, Clare--thanks for posting! Great that you caught the Bittern in flight! Almost looks like it is flying with feet crossed. Hope you and Limpy are well.

    Kind regards, Ann

  • You certainly picked a good day for your visit. It was good to bump into you both again. Great photos, but no photos of robins or magpies! Were they hiding from you Clare?
  • A cracking set of photos from your day out Clare. Looks like you had good weather. Too many to pick a favourite, they are all lovely, thanks for sharing.

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

  • In reply to Ian Barthorpe:

    Ian Barthorpe said:
    Great photos, but no photos of robins or magpies! Were they hiding from you Clare?

    Not quite, but neither were flaunting themselves at me (sadly).  At least the crow was more vocal.

    Our herring gulls are red listed birds.  Think about that the next time you hear some flaming idiot calling for a cull of them.

  • I've only just spotted this post, Clare, sorry, but what wonderful photos - as every.  Nice to see Limpy out and about too.  Hubby and I really must make a visit sometime this year. It's a lovely reserve, and it's ages since we've been.

    Birdie's DU Summaries 2018

  • Excellent sett Clare. Hope the weather is like that and all those birds show up when I am there tomorrow
  • Good on you Bob, forecast is fair I believe.

    Lot to learn