First Visit Minsmere & Dunwich Heath 2021

These pictures were taken at the end of April when we first escaped out of lockdown and shielding and booked a cottage stay in Aldeburgh on the Suffolk Coast. Only a 90 min drive from home but we were by the sea with different scenery and walking opportunities. I was online booking this break before Boris had finished his announcement on easing lockdown.

On the way up to Aldeburgh we stopped and visited both RSPB Boyton Marsh and Hollesly March for the first time. Unfortunately no decent photos but some good sightings especially at Hollesly. These pictures taken over a few days.

What better way to start than with a classic sighting. Not just one but two displaying nicely on top of Gorse bushes.

On into a wooded area and this beauty

Who obligingly worked its way around into the sun and stayed insight for once.

Further along the path we almost stepped on this one as it shot out of the bracken on one side of the path, luckily no sandals worn. Nearly missed the photo opportunity though it was so quick and made us both jump.

It seemed very bright in colour and had quite a green sheen to its skin. I wondered whether it might have recently sloughed its skin or did the colouring suggest a female?? Any thoughts would be welcomed.

Only sighting of a Redpoll this year.

Not sure if this is a Willow Warbler or not?

Chiffchaff from below having sung its socks off.

 Dunlin on the River Oare.

With Turnstones mud larking

just can't reach that itch

We had a great week away discovering new walks and birding areas.

When we had walked through Walberswick Marshes towards Dingle Marshes and back we were serenaded by a Nightingale, Blackcaps & Chiffchaff whilst recovering sat on a bench surrounded by gorse and scrub. Finally a distant Marsh Harrier at Walberswick Marsh.

Thanks for looking through our holiday snaps.


  • That looked a fab time Tony, I've said before Mrs PB has a hankering to head over that way, and these pictures won't dull that feeling at all! You've got the Dartford Warbler shots I still want, blue sky, atop the gorse :o).... and you know me and Warblers, I'm not even going to hazard a guess lol
    Thanks for sharing

  • Cracking photos Tony, especially the Dartford Warbler and the Treecreeper, you need WJ to come along and help with the adder questions, lovely clear shot of the Chiffchaff too, glad you enjoyed your holiday.

    Lot to learn

  • Interesting set of photos Tony and great day out for you with so many different birds and other wildlife; think that Adder would have made me jump too ! Never seen and Adder or a DW so must make extra effort once we get venturing further afield. Thanks for the post, a lovely read.


    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • Agree with Rob and still a Wren on my 17" screen too ! It may be ringed looking closer at the pic.


    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • Nice photos Tony, and what a snatch, my uneducated guess, an adder sliding across your path.

    Nice to see the treecreeper, and a turnstone, the latter not something we see here, though I did see a couple at Titchwell a couple of months back.


    Flickr Peak Rambler

  • In reply to PimperneBloke:

    Thanks PB, its been awhile since we were out and about and we were lucky with good weather. If and when you decide to visit the Suffolk coast let me know as I can point you at many places to visit other than Minsmere and Dunwich. Can also suggest places to stay.


  • In reply to gaynorsl:

    Thank you Gaynor, it was so nice to get away from the house and garden for a week into a different environment. We saw a few DW's but these were the best pictures and so many Chiffchaffs singing. Seems a long time ago now.


  • In reply to HAZY:

    We were lucky with the variety of sightings we had Hazel, but it was the right time of year which helps a lot. The Adder was a great added bonus. We have had a few sightings over the past couple of years both at Minsmere and on the Heath.


  • In reply to Mike B:

    Cheers Mike, yes it is an Adder, lucky, right time, right place. If you went to Titchwell I assume you walked down to the beach, we usually see the Turnstones around the old gun emplacement and rocks near there at low tide.


  • Sorry to be late to the party, catching up somewhat! The Adder's a male - black zigzag on that pale background, solid black spots on the side (females tend to be brown, with a brown zigzag and blurred, indistinct spots). At the end of April, it would have been recently sloughed so all bright and shiny just as you saw it. Likely still breeding going on as well, which might explain why he was in a hurry!


    Find me on Flickr / All about your camera - The Getting off Auto Index