Fifteen members and friends set off in Bluey heading south for the sun and it worked; blue sky, no wind and glorious sunshine by the time we reached West Sedgemoor near Curry Rivel.
(Click on the image to enlarge it)
We were met by our guide, long serving RSPB volunteer Nigel Smith ( this reserve can only be visited on organised tours) and he took us to a vantage point overlooking part of the Reserve. Nigel explained the history and management regime whilst clouds of Lapwings and Golden Plover filled the sky – a brilliant sight in the sunny weather. We moved on to the observation hide ( an upstairs in a barn but with hide Windows, seats and tea and biscuits).
Nigel soon picked out a Great White Egret which he said was unusual and then a perched Marsh Harrier that stayed for most of the morning. This was much viewed and photographed through various telescopes. There were lots of Wigeon with lesser numbers of Teal and Shoveler. A second Marsh Harrier gave us a fly past and put up some of the Lapwings, Golden Plover and ducks. Then as we made our way back a pair of Cranes flew in and proceeded to dance – a great end to our visit.
We drove to the Greylake Reserve for lunch, there were great views of Redwings and Reed Buntings from the car park as we arrived. From the hides the ducks were very close and we were soon spotting patrolling Marsh Harriers. There were several Snipe and a Peregrine on a pylon that interacted with a Raven on the next pylon. For good measure there was a Buzzard on another pylon – what did they do before the advent of electricity?
We walked up to the screen hide and I spotted a Merlin which had been harassing ( but not seriously threatening) the Lapwings but it flew just as a queue formed at my telescope to view it – you can’t win them all! A very enjoyable day was had by all.