Friday, December 14, 2007


OK, I know it's childish, but I have this sort of competitive streak. Last year I arrived in the hide and THERE WAS SOMEONE ALREADY THERE. I still saw the bird and got some photos, but selfishly I wanted it all to myself.
So this year I arrived at the reserve on the dot of opening time and walked briskly to the hide - still a good 15-20 minutes. Open the door and ............ yes - all by myself! Next came the task of examining each clump of reeds for any tell-tale sign. Because I'd rushed my glasses kept steaming up! The first 2 clumps drew a blank, but then peering through the bins I was sure there was something there in the third. Just a hint, but worth watching.
Sure enough after a few minutes the view became clearer. Well a bit clearer, and definitely something there.
Keep watching. Slowly, so slowly it moved, and then a head appeared, scouring the shallow water for food - can you see it yet (as Rolf would say)?
In time the stunning bird crept out, and for about an hour it moved around the patch in front of the hide - although for about 30 minutes it was in another clump of reeds - so hidden I kept losing it, even though the clump was only about 4 yards long and 2 thick.
So there we are, great views of a bittern from Potteric Carr - must be one of best UK spots for good winter views. There were at least 3 and probably 5 on the reserve when I was there. And all for me alone ..................................

(try clicking on the picture for a bigger view - soemtimes it seems to work, others not!)

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