Sunday, 20 March 2016

ORANGE 63 at Elmley

A morning trip to Elmley today delivered a surprise or two. Whilst parked up on the track enjoying the company of a Lapwing and a pair of Skylarks I was briefly joined by a pair of Marsh Harriers that decided to land about twenty yards from where I was parked. One bird had an Orange wing tag numbered 63.
A little research and I found that the bird was ringed in the nest at Elmley back in July 2013 where it fledged and moved later that year into Norfolk spending time at Strumpshaw Fen and Loddon and then dissapearing in January 2014 until returning to Elmley this March where it's hoped she's looking to breed and it would appear from watching today that she is partnered with a male and looking for a nest site so fingers crossed for her.

Orange 63 
Marsh Harrier
Another pair were observed from the car busily taking nest material to the reed bed so it should be a good year on the reserve for the Harriers again.

I don't pretend to know much about landscape management but I have at times questioned the management of Elmley usually when the birds don't come out to play but I have to say the place looks great and perfect for the breeding season that's about to take hold on the marsh with lot's of Lapwing, Redshank, Skylark all sorting territories today. Two Snipe were seen but if the Jack was present I missed it. Other waders included Ruff, Oystercatcher, Ringed Plover and Curlew. I offer my congratulations to all concerned for what it's worth.

Little Egret
Hares were present in good numbers but a little distant but always entertaining.

Hare chase
A cracking morning enjoyed from the comfort of the car and in the company of some cracking birds with the brief appearance of the Harriers being the big highlight.



  1. Thanks Brian! Much appreciate. Elmley NNR

  2. Thanks Brian, very pleased you enjoyed your visit and got some cracking shots. The land management certainly does take a lot of time and effort as does maintaining the visitor facilities from entry road to loos hence we ask for a small contribution per visitor or offer a Friends of Elmley scheme for regulars. There's more info on the land management on the info signs in the car park or on our website.

    Thanks, Elmley NNR

  3. Credit where it's due and the proof lies with the number and quality of birds and that seems to deliver a big tick for Elmley at the moment.