A Blustery Walk at Titchmarsh LNR
Great White Egret
After parking at the 'ford' (down the bumpy, rutted track opposite the turning to Titchmarsh off the A605), we paused on the bridge over the River Nene allowing the blustery wind to blow away our cobwebs. From this vantage point, we saw at least four or five red kites — two, in particular, looked like they had already paired up, and glided by closely together.
Our first visit was to the North Hide where we quickly spotted two great white egrets: one on the far bank and one huddled next to several grey heron, lapwing and cormorant on the little island in front of us. We wondered how bracing it must be, with no protection from the elements - I guess this is the price to be paid for safety from predators.
We continued our walk around the reserve, in a clockwise direction, stopping to watch a party of long-tailed tits and blue tits which skimmed our heads to feed on the catkins in front of us — always a pleasure to see and hear! Once more we stopped to listen to the hypnotic clattering of the bare tree branches and glanced up to see a pair of goosanders flying away following the winding course of the River Nene. The soft flutey calls of bullfinches were carried on the breeze which alerted us to their presence a long time before we finally saw them.
At the Heronry hide, we saw another great white egret and many little egrets and herons perched all around the edge of the lake. We also spotted shoveler and what we believe to be a pair of scaup. We watched them for a long time diving into the water, with a spirited leap but they were a little too distant for good photographic evidence.
A Cover of Coot
We finally ended up at the South Hide where we relaxed and watched blue tit, great tit, robin, chaffinch and pheasant feeding at the well stocked feeders.