Monty the Motorhome is feeling a little blind without his Sat Nav. So it was back to reliance on the atlas today, which was not much of a problem as our destination was Minsmere RSPB reserve - just a few miles away from our site.
It must be 20+ years since we visited this reserve, in which time the visitor reception area (car park, shop, cafe, toilets etc) have been expanded and redeveloped, such that it was all very unfamiliar.
However the reserve itself remains the same with a mix of woodland, wetland and coastal habitats that attract a wide range of birds at any time of the year.
Our first port of call was to the Bittern hide with hopes of seeing ……………. yes, Bittern. However it was not to be today, and no booming either (their call sounds like a foghorn) as this is just heard in the Spring. We did see Marsh Harriers and a Kingfisher which hovered over the water, like a Hummingbird, for several seconds at a time - something I’ve never seen before.
The next stop was the Island Mere hide, set amongst a vast reedbed. This was the spot for Bearded Tits, but again we were unlucky, with just a possible sighting of one darting from one clump of reeds to another.
We had lunch at the cafe before doing the coast trail around the scrapes and along there sea front. By now the weather had turned cool,dull and windy. Not ideal birdwatching conditions. However there were plenty of ducks and waders on the scrape, but we struggled to identify them without a book. Later we decided our tick list included Teal, Gadwall, Shoveller, Snipe, Curlew, Redshank, Little Egret.
I’m afraid no photos were taken of the wildlife today - they were all too far away. The best we could do was a shot of our map guide to the reserve, somewhat crumpled, but you can still make out the details.