Hares looking at you...


An early start at Martinmere meant that we arrived before closing. It was a bright fresh morning with a good amount of blue sky around so I had the bright idea of checking out the reed bed walk. This is a new path that has been opened up that is open to the public and takes you on a walk around the back of the reserve. I had never been before so this was a first. At this juncture I should have taken a photograph of the scene but sadly I didnt think of it. Here we were met with a series of small ponds, ditches and wide open sky. There were very few birds around but I loved it. Come winter it would certainly be a place to investigate.

Two pairs of Goslings were watching over nine goslings. I couldnt help but wonder if this was in fact two broods as nine is alot for one bird and I have often seen goslings grouped in large creches.

Mallards were certainly the duck of the day. Maybe it was because all the other wildfowl had gone but it seemed there was a very high number of Mallards everywhere. The reedbed walk did present other interesting birds though, the highlights being a Little grebe, reed warblers and a water rail that was distinctly heard calling nearby.

Back onto the reserve and we were keen to see how our famour four Moorhens were faring. Would they still be sitting together or would the nest have been deserted? Amazingly three of the birds were all huddled together with one other bird quietly feedly offnest nearby. All was peaceful. Will two broods hatch out and will they roughly be at the same time?

I dont know where the Nenes have been hiding their goslings but there was a great number of them around today. I saw two broods of five I had never seen before and they are now all well grown and looking very healthy.

The Black necked swan cygnets are doing very well with all five still looking very healthy.

In the photo below you can clearly see their black neck feathers starting to show through. Going home though I was gutted. I had forgotten to check up on the Black swan cygnets!!

A walk down to the Ron Barker hide produced little bird life. The week before Martinmere had had a wild crane drop in but sadly it was not around today. Instead we got a close encounter of the mammal kind. A hare was spotted at a distance. This was a first for me. In all the years I have visited Martinmere I have never seen a hare. To our delight he decided he was going to come closer…and closer… and closer until he was right outside the hide and posing beautifully. What a treat!

At the same time a pied wagtail put in an appearance. Calling to his mate wh o was collecting nesting material he too posed willingly on the gate.

Whilst there was still some decent light we also paid at trip to Mere sands wood. Here the bird of the day was the jay. There was many birds around and they were being very vocal.

The water and the woods were very quiet but we did manage to also spot a treecreeper. A curious little bird. He climbed a nearby tree quickly, Then he stopped and remained still for a minute or two, not moving a muscle. Just sitting there with his back to us. Then slowly he turned his head and appeared to start straight at us. Naturally he knew we were there the whole time. As we were leaving the reserve Mark saw a male pied flycatcher. I saw it briefly before it vanished never to be seen again. A lifer for him and an exciting bird to end a good days birding.


4 May, 2012
muddywalters said:

A great blog with superb photos Annette - it was a good day out. The Hare encounter was a real treat and I think the Reedbed Walk is very promising.
One thing you didn't mention was how nice that early morning bacon butty and coffee was!

4 May, 2012
phili said:

Some fine shots and an interesting blog Annette.

6 May, 2012
eje said:

A truly superb blog Annette,many thanks for sharing.

6 May, 2012
robashfield said:

Great pics,great blog...nice one annette.

6 May, 2012
bonkersbon said:

Lovely blog....the first photo is my favourite Psilo..

7 May, 2012
m_squared said:

Terrific pics.

7 May, 2012
jane said:

Lovely blog Psilo...nominated for " Wildlife" in Birdpedia...:o))

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