On the move again

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The end of our fifth week saw us leaving Boggle Hole on the North Yorkshire coast, heading for Cley in Norfolk via Blacktoft Sands just a few miles east of Goole and south of the Humber. This is an important reserve run by RSPB. It’s a great place to sit and watch and give yourself a surprise or two. The Tree Sparrow has made wonderful recoveries where the habitat has been restored for them to feed, nest and breed and here at Blacktoft is one of the locations where they exist in good numbers. We also saw Black tailed Godwits, Coot, Dunlin, Green Sandpipers, Lapwing, Little Grebe, Little Ringed Plover, Mallard, Moorhen, Pheasant, Redshank and Spotted Redshank, Ruff, Snipe, and Teal. While we were watching the water birds two adult and two juvenile Marsh Harriers put on an ariel display for us which also included a parent dropping a meal for the youngster to catch. One of the young ones perched on top of a bush where we could see the immature plumage and compare it with an adult. Patience paid off when a Water Rail emerged from the reeds and showed itself. This was not a first for us but they are always difficult to see. The other elusive one is the Bittern which is what we hope to see in Norfolk. Blacktoft is a great place to go to, it is well organised, the hides are very good and the birds are on show. You should give it a visit and we would love to go back as there is so much to see. We did manage to see both Sedge Warbler and Reed Warbler with a male Blackcap showing. Tomorrow it is going to be Cley Marshes just outside our door!