Monday the news filtered out of a Little Bittern seen and heard at Gosforth Park Nature Reserve, I was along the coast and rather than dash off straight there I decided to go home first and dress more appropriate to an evening at the lakeside complete with insect repellent. It had been decided as with the recent Feruginous Duck to allow day passes to what is normally a private reserve of The Norrthumbria Nartural History Society so I suppose I should not have been surprised when arriving at the hide to find it filled to overflowing and being a nice warm sunny day it was rather comical to see everyone sweating profusely , well at least I got in the hide with a few standing outside where you can see nothing, I was bent over trying to get a look out of the low shutters temperature rising by the minute so I decided to head around to the South hide which overlooks a lot of the reeds and has a small pool in front. Arrived at the hide to find it empty what a strange contrast , no sooner had I sat down when a Kingfisher drops in sitting on a nicely placed branch it has a couple of attempts at fishing but without success, numerous Reed Warblers feeding along the reed edges also a Reed Bunting, with Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, and Blackcap singing beside the hide. Well I gave it my best shot spending about an hour and a half gazing over the extensive reed bed with no sign of the bird I could hear it calling but only faintly, (it resembles a small dark barking but in slow motion) with the surrounding area providing lots of traffic and aircraft noise pollution , the seemed to over towards the west edge where a screen overlooks another pool which are all collected with narrow passages . I decided to walk around on arrival only a family of Mute Swans to be seen with the occasional Common Tern trying it s hand at fishing , a Green Woodpecker called and sounded fairly close so I headed off to have a look , surprised myself at picking it out fairly quickly as it rested in a tree calling briefly giving me the rare opportunity of getting a few shots , I did not go back to the main hide but the bird was reported as having been seen/heard at least it was still here , no chance to get back Tuesday but Wednesday was free so the plan to get there early. Round one Little Bittern 1 me 0
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