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Explore, discover and enjoy nature at Minsmere. There's always something exciting to inspire a return visit to Suffolk's natural treasure.
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birds of prey
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Ducks and raptors and reedbed birds
Water levels are finally beginning to return to normal on most parts of the reserve, with all paths now fully accessible - if a little muddy near the sluice. The Levels are a still looking superb, with shallow floodwater covering the marshes. Huge flocks of ducks are gathering out there, including...
12 Jan 2013
Let the magic begin
I had another stroll down to the new Island Mere Hide this afternoon to look at the newly installed interpretation, and in the hope of seeing a few good birds. I wasn’t disappointed. As I’ve said previously, I loved the old hide, despite it’s shortcomings, and while I knew its replacement...
1 Dec 2011
It's nice to see smew
Smews are definitely one of my favourite birds. They are scarce but annual visitors to Minsmere, with up to five usually seen between mid December and late February, maybe for slightly longer. They are diving ducks that feed on fish (they're actually the smallest member of the sawbill family, closely...
22 Dec 2010
A touch of the exotic
Despite the deep freeze conditions, there was a touch of exotica at Island Mere today. A Chinese feel to the birding. The reason? The unexpected appearance of a pair of mandarins, sharing the tiny ice-free pool with a few gadwalls, shovelers, mallards and teals, five female tufted ducks, a drake pintail...
18 Dec 2010
Scavengers, one and all
Sometimes it's the common species that spring the biggest surprises. So it was at lunchtime today when I strolled down to Island Mere. The scene was, as usual, one of calm serenity. The water was mirror-calm, reflecting the low midday sun such that it was impossible to see the island itself. The...
14 Dec 2010
The Five W's
You've all heard of the three R's of learning. As you're reading this, you'll be familiar with the three W's of the world wide web. Well, today's wildlife highlights centred on the five W's: waxwings, wildfowl, waders, water rails and wagtails. Waxwings continue to be seen...
11 Dec 2010
6000 minus two equals dinner
Our starling roost was particularly impressive again tonight. Numbers remain at about 6000 birds, but however good we are estimating such big flocks, they were reduced by two tonight thanks to the successful attacks of an opportunistic peregrine ! One theory behind why starlings gather in such numbers...
7 Dec 2010
Icy blast brings wader bonanza
It's not often we say this in December, but the Scrape was heaving with waders today. No doubt the bitterly cold north-easterly gales were a factor, with many of these birds seeking the relative shelter of the Scrape, rather than braving it our on the beaches and estuaries, but it just shows that...
1 Dec 2010
One of the joys of wildlife watching is its unpredictability. Take our starlings for a start. After several years without a decent starling roost at Minsmere, we'd almost given up on them returning, and began focusing on the roost at RSPB Snape . Imagine our surprise and pleasure when the roost began...
26 Nov 2010
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