Tuesday 20 March – Greylake RSPB Reserve. Leader: Mark Watson

Thirteen members met at Greylake on a dry but cold morning and though the recent snow had gone from the
Levels and Moors the going underfoot was squelchy and some of the paths were closed due to the wet conditions.
In the car park we saw Reed Bunting, Blue Tit, Great Tit and Chaffinch and a flock of 25 Lapwings as we set off to
the lookout at the far end of the reserve. Some of us saw a Marsh Harrier in the distance but it quickly
disappeared behind a copse. We moved on around the reed beds to the viewpoint hearing a Cetti’s Warbler and
seeing Goldfinch, Mute Swans, Buzzard, Skylark, and a Fieldfare on the way. At the end of the path we all had a
good, if distant, view of two Marsh Harriers along with a few Mallards and ten Teal flying overhead. Four Great
White Egrets were on the marsh, occasionally flying short distances, a Little Egret was also feeding and a solitary
Cormorant passed by. As we moved on to the hides Water Rails were heard and six Snipe were close by on a
small island as we reached the hides. From the hides many Teal, Gadwall, Wigeon, Shoveler and Coot were on
the pools and we managed to locate two Pintails reasonably close by. A Grey Heron sat at a field edge and a
Kestrel hunted overhead as we walked back to the car park. One lucky birder saw a Cetti’s Warbler
uncharacteristically sitting in full view and Chiffchaffs were heard in the hedgerow. After lunch four of us went on
the Stathe and were rewarded with a good view of 14 Common Cranes on Aller Moor along with a couple of
Canada Geese, and also nearby a flock of 23 Little Egrets on the wet grassland next to the River Parrett giving a
total of 40 species. (Many thanks to Mark for leading.) ` Mark Watson