An excellent weekend enjoyed by 4 members of the group in the Norfolk Broads.
A particular highlight was the Saturday spent with Marcus Nash of BirdTour.co.uk around Hickling Broad, Potter Heigham (Weavers' Way), Upton Fen and How Hill. Marcus found us wonderful birding opportunities, especially with sightings of Britain's new mediterranean arrivals of Spoonbill, Black-winged stilt (with young), Little Egret and a Night Heron (that's the speck against the blue sky in the 6th image below - honest!). A Jackdaw was struggling to snack on a hairy Garden Tiger moth caterpillar, a Garganey duck settled among the Spoonbills, and later we watched a Hobby hunting dragonflies.
The dragon and damselflies were a revelation, including the uncommon Norfolk Hawker and Hairy Dragonfly and Miner bees, and it was glorious to see the Swallowtail butterflies.
Upton Fen is home to lovely Marsh Orchids and the extremely rare but undemonstrative Fen Orchid, although one of our number seemed to be having difficulty spotting it...
Here's a link to Marcus' blog post - he describes the wildlife a great deal better than I can! https://norfolkbirdtours.wordpress.com/2017/06/11/10th-june-2017-broads-birds-butterflies-more/
On Sunday we joined a Norfolk Wildlife Trust boat tour of Ranworth Broad, entertained and educated by the sprightly boatman who had worked on the water in the area for over 40 years. Here there were Crested Grebes, terns, Egyptian Geese and Cormorant as well as shoals of Greylag geese.
Marsh harriers are so common in the area that they almost pass without comment by local experts.
We stayed at the Moorhen B&B in Horning, and ate and refreshed consistently well at the Ferry Inn at Surlingham, the King's Head in Coltishall, the Greyhound in Hickling, the Fur & Feather at Woodbastwick and the Ship Inn at South Walsham.
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