We have been open a week now and it has been lovely to welcome back familiar faces and welcome many newcomers to the reserve. The feedback on our safety measures and the introduction of an entrance charge has been overwhelmingly positive which is very reassuring – so thank you.

Birds

The Freshmarsh is looking fantastic with lots of waders dropping in throughout the day including good numbers of avocet, black-tailed godwit and dunlin. There has been a trickle of golden plovers, turnstones, common sandpipers and ruff. Lurking at the back you may see a greenshank and a spotted redshank. On Wednesday, after just 30 minutes I had recorded 15 species of wader on Freshmarsh alone. But it isn’t just wader numbers building there has been a noticeable increase in Teal and a careful search revealed an eclipse garganey on Tuesday.

Dunlin at Titchwell. Les Bunyan

The reedbed continues to host up to 3 great white egrets, with little egret numbers building to double figures. Bearded tits are being seen regularly, at the base of the reeds and a green woodpecker was along east trail early Thursday morning.

Other highlights have included a black tern, arctic skua, great skua, gannets and guillemots on the sea.

There are still ringed plovers nesting on the beach so please respect all cordons and on site signage. We have been disappointed to hear of photographers disturbing these birds who are trying to rear their next generation.

Butterflies

All along the trails a range of butterflies have been seen including lots of gatekeepers, large whites and red admirals. The first wall butterflies of the year were spotted along the west bank path.

If you are visiting or out and about why not take part in the Big Butterfly Count organised by Butterfly Conservation. You just need to record all the butterflies you see in 15 minutes. For more information follow this link www.bigbutterflycount.org

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Thanks for reading

Lizzie Bruce

NW Norfolk Reserves Warden

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