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Minsmere

Minsmere
Explore, discover and enjoy nature at Minsmere. There's always something exciting to inspire a return visit to Suffolk's natural treasure.
Results for butterflies, sand martin
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  • Blog Post: from moths to tigers, pond life to warblers

    The sun is shining (at last), and the crowds are filing through the doors for our fourth family day of the summer. It's great to see so many excited faces as children dip their nets in the pond before studying the contents in a waiting white tray. A dragonfly larvae here, newt nymph there, or the...
  • Blog Post: A taste of the Costas

    Firstly, an apology for the lack of recent updates. I've been away for a couple of weeks and with so much work going on at Minsmere I didn't ask anyone to write an update in my absence. Also a reminder that you can see more regular, brief updates on our Twitter and Facebook pages. With spring...
  • Blog Post: A spring in my step

    It's been lovely to have a couple of short strolls around parts of Minsmere this week. The warm sunshine has put a real spring in my step, and it really feels like the seasons have changed at last (especially after a week in up to a foot of snow in Estonia earlier this month!) The bumblebees have...
  • Blog Post: Another touch of France

    This time last week I was soaking up the rays of French sunshine in the Cevennes, combining leading guided walks with a family holiday. What a great area for watching wildlife. Orchids galore, including two found nowhere else in the world. Loads of butterflies - just don't ask me exactly which blues...
  • Blog Post: Bitterns on top form

    It's mid March, so bitterns have finally started to steal the show back from otters in Minsmere's reedbeds. During the first early morning survey work last week wardens heard at least eight grunting bitterns. Grunting is the precurso to booming. A kind of tuning up. Although they were less vocal...
  • Blog Post: butterflies add a touch of spring

    Today's star birds were a spoonbill and buzzards. The spoonbill was spotted on the Levels this morning before moving to West Scrape, where it remained visible for much of the afternoon. An excellent passage of nine buzzards was noted over Whin Hill this morning, in three separate parties of four...
  • Blog Post: Beaches, beetles, and back to business as usual

    This morning Ricky and I went down to the beach before work to begin our ringed plover monitoring. These little birds make their nests on the pebbly beach and should breed from this time of year on. They can easily and unintentionally be flushed from their nests, and their eggs are so well camouflaged...
  • Blog Post: A happy ending

    The saga of the nightingale nest had a happy ending over the weekend, as the brood successfully fledged on Sunday. At least one chick was subsequently found - a great reward for the efforts of the parents, and our volunteers who spared several hours helping to reduce disturbance and allowing the adults...
  • Blog Post: A great weekend

    We had another great weekend at Minsmere. Our staff and volunteers spoke to many visitors, helping them to spot our special species and make the visit more enjoyable. It was great to see so many families, especially on Saturday when the weather was superb. Sunday remained dull and dreary, with the forecast...
  • Blog Post: Busy, busy, busy. Too much to see and not enough time

    Wow, there's just so much happening at Minsmere - and we haven't even got to May yet! After yesterday's stone-curlew was spotted from the approach road, another was located on the Konik Field, where it showed well all afternoon. Although they are waders, stone-curlews are rarely seen near...
  • Blog Post: Fudge anyone?

    Keeping up the insect theme (well, July is the month that many birdwatchers switch their allegiance to insects) I saw my first cinnabar moth caterpillars today. These are the yellow and black striped caterpillars that feed on ragwort plants. If you were like me as a child, you might remember "playing"...
  • Blog Post: On the move or stay at home

    As June drifted seemlessly into July, Minsmere's wildlife responded accordingly. In many ways the birdlife has a more autumnal feel now, with few signs of the recent spring. Meanwhile, for our plants and insects summer is definitely well and truly in full flow. Among our breeding birds, midsummer...
  • Blog Post: New arrivals trickling in

    Hot on the heels of our recent pair of garganeys, the last week has seen the arrival of the advance guard of some of our earlier spring migrants. Last week I asked whether the first sand martins or wheatears would arrive soon and they finally did so over the weekend, with singles of both species seen...
  • Blog Post: Back from Africa

    They seem to be a bit late this year, but we've finally had what can be described as a flock of sand martins around the pond today, with up to twelve birds present all day. We've also had further sightings of a swallow and the first house martin over the Scrape today. Another new arrival is...
  • Blog Post: Expecting the unexpected

    Spring is a fantastic time at Minsmere, with so much to see that you never really know what to expect. OK, so you can reliably see black-headed gulls, avocets and lapwings nesting on the Scrape, or perhaps a marsh harrier sky-dancing above the reeds, but will you be lucky enough to spot a bittern...