Sunday, 8 September 2013

Titchwell Bird Reserve Visit

This week we made a visit to Titchwell Marsh Reserve which was the first for quite some time.
Its on the edge of the North Norfolk coastline and not only is there usually quite a variation in birdlife to be seen during one visit, but a considerable variation throughout the year.

My bird identification ability is limited (as my local birding colleagues will confirm) and not having made much study off them so far, Waders are definitely my weak point.
So considerable studying of the books was needed to ID the first wader here below which I believe to be a Ruff. (Hopefully)

The next species was somewhat easier and is seen below next to the Ruff and is a Little Ringed Plover.

The one bird I did know below,  a 'Lapwing', which I use to see as a boy in the fields of Somerset. 
It was commonly known as a 'Peewit' due to the sound of its call.

As an aside, whilst taking these shots of the Lapwing, I did overhear a couple close by who were looking at the Lapwing and the Lady said, "Thats a Avocet isn't it" and the Gentleman said "Oh Yes".

(One doesn't feel quite so bad about One's abilities sometimes) {:))

The next wader below is a Curlew and its call which I recognised, help me differentiate between it and a Whimbrel which can also be seen at the Reserve.

The shot below is of 14 Little Egrets that took off from a Lagoon and then landed again. 
Unfortunately they didn't fly any closer, but at least I could get them all in the shot.

A squadron of Cormorants that had taken off from the sea and flew inland.

Black-tailed Godwits like the Little Egrets also took off on a short display.

A Racing Pigeon glancing around as it flew over the reserve.

Greylag Geese getting airborne from one of the lagoons.

Canada Geese getting airborne.

Images of the beach area

Although I hadn't realised it at the time of taking this shot of birds on the shoreline, but amongst these were some Sandwich Terns (small groups closest to the waters edge), birds I had not seen before.
Unfortunately the Oystercatchers (Black and White birds) wouldn't take off and provide another aerial display.

A group of Black-tailed Godwits with one Sandwich Tern (foreground left) along with two other smaller waders that I don't recognise.

A really good news story below.
This was a shot I took of an RNLI lifeboat that had travelled from Hunstanton and went by out from the shoreline at a rate of knots travelling East. It was heading for the next bay (about one mile) where it rescued a woman and two children who had been dragged out from the shoreline by the a strong tide. From press reports, they were hanging onto a float and the two children were pulled onto the RNLI craft, whilst another crew member dived into the water and recovered the woman. All three persons were recovering well in hospital subsequently.
The RNLI is a worthy charity and its astonishing to think that a charity organisation run by Volunteers is the front line for our sea rescue services in UK.

Walking back up to the Reserve Reception Centre "Freddie the Frog" hopped across the path.


  1. Hi Roy,
    Lovely images of a lovely reserve. I think the two `other` birds in your Blackwit/Sandwich Tern photo are Dunlin (the smaller one) and Knot (the larger one). The small wader does have quite a long, curved bill, but I can't make out any supercilium which rules out Curlew Sand. Hope this helps.

    1. HI John, thanks for your guidance on the ID's. Yes its a great place to visit.

  2. Loved the Ruff Roy - and all the other bird photos you shared; quite a bounty. The shells were amazing too - those long ones unusual; enjoyed this post a lot with the scenery as well

  3. What a lovely day along your shoreline! Enjoyed your series of photos. Many of your birds would be lifers for me! I live on the shore and struggle with the id of shorebirds all the time. Because many only appear during migration, they are not dressed in their breeding plumage.

    1. Thanks Karen, breeding plumage, or the lack of it was the problem with the Ruff.

  4. Titchwell is a great place to visit Roy and always has a good selection of birds, as your images show. I do have one complaint though...every time I visit it seems to be blowing a hooley! Judging by your images it looks like you had a GOOD (not windy) day?

    Haha! Listening into those hide conversations is almost as good a hobby as watching the birds, it's amazing what you hear sometimes, I once heard a women (bedecked with all the birdwatching gear) telling two (teenagers?) kids that she was with that the two Grey Herons they were watching were Flamingos!!

    Good news about the rescue of the swimmers, the RNLI do a good job....[;o)

    1. Thanks Trevor.
      It was T. Shirt weather with no wind and rather warm, don't forget your thermals the next time you visit.{:))
      Yes, its a bit of an indoor sport listening to some. You would think they would get a book.

  5. A great post Roy and some outstanding images, Titchwell is a very special place isn't it :-)

  6. Dit is genieten Roy wat een vogels en zoveel.

  7. Hi Roy,

    That's a good place to be! You're doing well with the ID of the birds untill now. You caught the colours of the lapwing very very well. A lot of people think it is in fact a black and white bird with a crest. Only when you look better you see this is a really colourful bird. Luckely this RNLI does excist, but in fact it is sort of strange it is only run by volunteers.

    I really enjoyed this blog with so many birds, nice pictures and a lovely story.

    Kind regards,

  8. Hey Roy... Fantastic water, beach, and skies looked like a gorgeous day!!
    What I love at the shore is the groups of birds gracing : )the sky when they fly up and do there little performance and land again!! You have captures that in you photo's of them so well!!
    The third image of the Avocet oh yes Lapwing : ) I love the look as it is walking face on made me smile!!
    Roy that looks more like Toad then a Frog !! Well that's we would call it on this side of the pond : )!!
    Oh and those long shells are Razor Clam shells : )!!


    1. Thanks GG. Yes frogs hop, toads walk and this one definitely hopped.

  9. Gorgeous wildlife there!! We went back to the bucks, Berks oxon wildlife trust reserve in Bray today, without camera (horror!) But picked lots of blackberries.

    1. Without a camera Helena ??? shocking.(:))

  10. Now you mention it Roy I used to see many a Lapwing in the local fields but it must be a few years since I spotted one.

    1. I use to see large flocks flying over the fens just few years ago, but not now John.

  11. HI Roy Well this is not your usually post. fantastic selection of birds found. That looks like a great reserve and I love the blue skies with the wisps of white cloud. The RNLI do a great work.

    1. Its been butterflies recently, but I do shoot birds when I see them.

  12. Truly wonderful blog with all these waders as Ruff, Curlew, Lapwing, Plover etc.


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