You may or may not be familiar with the above quote from a song I remember from my school days but our topsy-turvey weather often brings it to mind. Today was no exception. I used some of my ‘precious’ petrol to visit Attenborough Nature Reserve as soon as the sun followed the rain.
Following a sighting report on Twitter (thanks @piedfly99) I stopped off at a point near the entrance to the reserve and was pleased to see two snipe. One was active and the other snoozing with its long bill tucked under its wing for most of the time.
I returned to the same spot on my way out of the reserve to see if the snipe were foraging together. They weren’t but as I was looking a water rail emerged from the reedbed. The pictures are not of the best but they are sufficient to confirm my sighting of this particularly shy bird.
Over wintering ducks are beginning to gather in numbers on the reserve. A drake gadwall looks a dull grey but close inspection reveals and intricate pattern of black and white markings. The other two in the first image are female tufted ducks. I love the facial marking of the drake teal with his mate in the second image.
Video Clip – Click to View
I spent 30 min or so in the Kingfisher Hide just enjoying the peaceful scene watching the geese, swans, ducks, lapwings and a little grebe. On a shingle spit some distance away a small flock of starlings were bathing on the far edge and periodically taking to the air in a precursor of the murmurations I hope to witness later in the year.