A Day at Minsmere 16/12/17

We got up early to get to the reserve for opening and watched the sun rise on the drive there.  A Pheasant met us by the feeders in the car park, with Coal and Marsh Tits flying in and out of the feeders.  Whilst Dunnocks,  Robins and Chaffinch  hopped undeneath.

PheasantMale Pheasant

There were footprints of Deer though we are not sure which ones.

FootPrintsDeer Prints

A Squirrel was eating,with others jumping and running about in the woodland.

SquirrelGrey Squirrel

We had an excellent view of a pair of Bullfinches eating berries at the top of a bush.  The Konik Horses were feeding onthe scrapes.

Konik HorseKonik Horse

At the beachwe had a sea; bobbing its head above the waves.

SealCommon Seal

On the final walk round whilst the sun started to set we had the privilege to see Whopper Swans flying by the Isle of Mere Hide.

Isle of Mere Hide ViewView from Isle of Mere Hide

There was a Water Rail eating and hiding along the reeds,then sprinted off.  A Bearded Tit came fowardand we had the best view of a male that we have ever had.

Bearded TitBearded Tit

FInally before we left the hide a pair of Otters was swimming, playing and splashing around at the back.

On the walk back to the car we had four Red Deer walk in frout of us and they were watching us from trees.

Red Deer EyesRed Deer

At the car the Tawny Owls were calling out to each other and as we left a Muntjac Deer walk in front of us.  This was an extremely good end to the day.




Rainham Firecrest Hunt

Had a walk round Rainham Marhes this morning, which was cold in the wind.  Finally got to see a Firecrest after three weeks of trying.

Managed to see 60 differents birds today (25/11/17), also 60 at Kids Bird Walk last week (18/11/17) and 20 when we had a quick walk to try and find the firecrest on 12/11/17.

Highlights with a few pictures are below, had a good view of a Barn Owl in its box and  Stonechats bouncing round.


Had quite few different birds of prey including, Marsh Harrier flying over cows, Kestrel hovering and a Sparrow Hawk hunting.

Marsh HarrierMarsh Harrier
Sparrow HawkSparrow Hawk

Variuos ducks of which Pintail was my favourite.


Waders including good view of Curlew and a Ruff from the Ken Barrett Hide.

Ruff LapwingRuff in front of a Lapwing

We had all three pipits, Meadow, Rock and excellent view of a Water from the Ken Barrett Hide.  For the keen eyed there was a Common Snipe hiding in the edge of the mud.

Robins were jumping around in the bushes with Blue, Great and Long Tailed Tits.


Little Egret was stalking and hunting for fish.

Little EgretLittle Egret

Had a couple good days out and about looking at the various wild life at Rainham.



Titchwell 25/10/2017

We got up early and arrived at 9am after couple hours in the car.  This was our first time to Titchwell and we started to explore hoping to see somehing new.

We walked towards the beach and saw some Redshank & Black Tailed Godwit up close.

Redshank 2


There were lots of Curlew feeding in the grass with Brent and Pink Footed Geese on the mud.

Brent Geese

Brent Geese

We searchd through the Dunlin and enentullay managed see a Curlew Sandpiper.

Black Tailed Godwit

Black Tailed Godwit

When we got to the beach the tide was in so there was less about, but was happy to see a Red Breasted Merganser fly past.  We decieded to go back to get something to eat and then come back later to the beach.   Whilst walking we were surprised to find a Chinese Water Deer.

Chinese Water Deer

Chinese Water Deer

After luinch we took a dffierent route and was watching some Stonechat and Redstart bounding aroung in some dead trees.  There was a Common Darter, which did not mind having its photo taken.

Common Darter 2

Common Darter

Common Darter1

Common Darter

Back at the beach the tide was out and there were lots of Turnstone and  Sandling feeding.  We were helped out by a local and found Common Scoter and Red Throated Driver out at sea.



It was a good day as I saw new a new Deer and birds that I had not seen before.

Rainham Marshes & Oare Marshes 14/10/17

Today we got up early and went down to Rainham Marshes for kid’s bird watching and afterwards we went to Oare Marshes to see the Wilsons Phalarope and Long Billed Dowitcher.

We went to Rainham earlier today to find something different, when we got there we started looking round.  A Ruff was wading feeding in Purfleet Pools and a Bullfinch flew over our heads.  We continued to walk down the river wall and found a Marsh Harrier flying above the reeds hunting.  It was windy and the tide was in therefore there was not much about in the bay, apart from a few gulls and a Curlew feeding.



When we went on the walk with Howard along the sea wall there was lots of Chaffinch and Goldfinch going up river.  There was also some Rock Pipits, Linnits and even two Siskins flying amongst them.

As we entered through the gate there were some Stonechat and we heard some Bearded Tits ping, but did not see them.  Near the Butts Hide there was a Buzzard circling and was being mobbed by some Crows.  It was a quiet day with not much about, most of the small birds were keeping out of the wind.



We left Rainham to go to Kent to see the Long Billed Dowitcher and Wilson’s Phalarope.  When we arrived there was lots of Golden Plover, Back Tailed Godwits and Redshank in the pools.  There were a few other people there and someone kindly pointed out the Phalarope.  It was following behind a Shovler eating all the creatures that the Shovler had disturbed.  We were watching it going backwards and forwards following the Shovler.

Wilsons Phalarope

Distance Wilson’s Phalarope following a Shovler

Then we turned to the little lagoon to the right and there were three Little Stints wondering round near the water edge on the mud.  There were also some Avocet, Greenshank and a Ruff wading looking for food.  We continued looking for the Dowitcher, but could not find it.  We got in the car and was just leaving when someone spotted it.  I jumped out of the car and was super lucky to see it.

Long Billed Dowitcher

Long Billed Dowitcher

It was a tremendous and lucky end to the day.


Spotted Crake at Ingrebourne Valley

Today (23/09/17) I hoped to see a Spotted Crake that had been there for the past week. I tried Thursday and had no luck so hoped to find it today.

As we started to walk down a path a flock of Blue, Great and Long Tailed Tits was jumping around in the tress with a Gold Crest amongst them. When we got there it was see two minutes ago and a few minutes later my dad found it behind a willow tree. It started coming close but disappeared again.

Spotted Crake 1

I started looking for some other birds in the pool. The ducks are starting to come back because there was more teal. At the back near the mud there was some green sandpipers and 20 Snipe. I’d never seen that many Snipe before in one go! There was a lot of mute swans as well as Canada, Greylag Geese flying in. In the distant trees two Ring Necked Parakeets was squawking mad.

We then watch the Spotted Crake feeding in the reads. Very happy to see the Crake, makes up for Thursday and nice seeing very close as well.

Spotted Crake 2

Kids bird watching Rainham Marshes 09/09/2017

In the centre a Kingfisher was hovering over a lagoon and a Grey Wagtail landed on a bench. As we started the walk we were on the sea wall and Howard pointed out some Yellow Legged Gulls, Little Egrets and Greenshank. Nearing the bay I found a Beetle with red legs, also at that time two Kestrels were hovering in the distance. As we was looking at the Kestrel Howard noticed a Buzzard getting mobbed by some Rooks. We continued to the bay and saw a group of Black Tailed Godwits and carried on as there was not much else to see. We walked down through the gate and started looking on the fence posts for a Whinchat, because it was what we aimed to see today. Whilst walking towards the dragonfly pools we kept a look out. We heard a faint Bearded Tit call in the far reeds. On the fence there was an Ant Mimic Jumping Spider that without looking properly, it really looked like an ant. Then a Common Darter landed next to it. On the wall near the hide there was a Weasel hunting and everyone on the walk was really excited that they had seen it. As we were approaching the butt’s hide a Marsh Marrier was flying. We made our way to Averly pool, found some Reed Dagger Caterpillars and a Slender Groundhopper. I haven’t seen a Groundhopper for two years and neither had Howard. When we got to Averly pool there was a group of Hobbies and Kestrel sparring and that was amazing. At the end of the board walk a Common Lizard was there and I got a nice picture. In the kids play area there was a Wasp Spider and a very small bee and I took a photo of it when it was on Howard’s finger. We then had lunch in the centre before we went out to the Serin Mound as we had not seen our Whintchat. At the Serin Mound I wanted to find a Whinchat and after a few minutes there was four sitting in a tree. A happy end to a fantastic day.