After a prolonged spell of easterly storms in the North Sea, the weather had finally cleared giving us a clear day. There were some reports of waxwings and some lingering migrants along the coast at Titchwell RSPB reserve, hopefully they would provide some good photo opportunities . A quick look along the Fen Trail to the Fen Hide didn’t produce any sightings and no waxwings, they were obviously off elsewhere searching for the autumn berries. The numbers of wintering duck seemed to be growing on Patsy Pool but today they were all mainly on the far bank.

Along the West Bank at Titchwell

Back on the path along the West Bank the numbers of birders brought out by the good weather was increasing, but the recent cut reeds close to the path had encouraged the waders and ducks to stay close. There were great views of a Common Snipe and Ruff feeding in the newly exposed mud.

Common snipe


Common snipe

ruff-non-breeding-plumage


Ruff in non breeding plumage

Further along in The Freshwater Lagoon a group of presumable over wintering Dunlin, in non breeding plumage, were busily feeding along the water line.

dunlin


Dunlin

dunlin at titchwell


Dunlin

On to the Beach at Titchwell

The beach is often one of the best locations on the reserve to observe the birds. At over a mile wide it’s a great place to take a stroll. Today we were meet by an amazing sight of hundreds of gulls and waders all foraging, along the high tide line, on the huge amount of carrion that the storms had brought in over the past few days. A fishing boat was visible, close in, with hundreds of birds following it in the hope of some food. It was a spectacular and noisy sight as they screeched and whirled in the air.

 Black headed gull


Black Headed Gull

knot in winter plumage


Knot in winter plumage

turnstone non breeding plumage


Turnstone in winter plumage

little egret at titchwell


Little Egret

After spending time on the beach and with the low autumn sun going down  it was time to head back to the car park, but not before catching an image of  the lone little egret on Volunteer Marsh, bathed in some late afternoon sunlight.