The first car trip of the new season with the RSPB SE Herts Group was to Lakenheath on a bright, sunny and warm day. At the visitor centre a number of birds were around the feeders including this young Goldfinch.
Brief views were obtained of both Coal and Marsh Tits and this skulking Reed Warbler.
As a juvenile Osprey had been seen on two previous days we decided to walk up the river first. A flock of Greylag Geese flew over and I took a few shots. It was only when I got back that I realised they had someone who wanted to be part of the group!
Among the Grey Herons and Little Egrets, a Great Egret stood out well.
Lakenheath can be a noisy place with the airbase next door, and I had to take a picture of the F15's. In the second picture I think the smaller plane is an F16.
Three cronking Ravens were a surprise, and an even bigger surprise was that they mobbing the Osprey. It was fairly distant, and looking into the light, so only a record shot here. That being said, a great bird for the day and a lifer for some.
Three or four Hobbies were still around the reserve hawking for Dragonflies, but again not coming too close.
And for once, a Clouded Yellow butterfly decided to co-operate!
Lunch was taken at Joist Fen viewpoint and Common Snipe and Marsh Harriers added to the list. We could hear Bearded Tits pinging for a long time and eventually got some brief views as they flitted over the reeds. A couple of birds came nearer allowing us all to see them and for some it was their first ever sighting. Just the one record shot here before they disappeared.
And then a shout went up "Cranes"! Two birds flying past, and as usual fairly distant.
The walk back added a Kingfisher at the Mere hide and views of a splendid male Marsh Harrier. A couple of us stopped off at Cavenham Heath on the way back and I could not resist a Common Darter warming up on the wire fence.
No sign of any Stone Curlews, but lots of Stonechats!
And a final treat were four Woodlarks feeding on the ground.
A really enjoyable day!
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