Simon Thomas, Broads Wildlife Centre, Ranworth
The distinct call of the chiffchaff is a constant accompaniment to a stroll along the boardwalk as is the sight of the marsh marigolds as they lend some much needed vibrancy. The swallows have returned and are busy building their nests in the eaves of the wildlife centre. They can be regularly seen through the centre windows and via the screens linked to cameras observing the nests. The first osprey sighting was recorded on 16 April, nearly a year to the day since it was seen last year. Enjoy a guided water trail and you stand a very good chance of a glimpse of this magnificent creature swoop in and pluck a fish from the water, only to be pestered by an opportunist buzzard. An osprey platform was erected during the winter months in the Bure Valley, and the hope is here that a mate soon joins our resident and decides to make use of it.
|Great crested grebes, photo by Barry Madden|
The thousands of fish fry surrounding the centre are sending the great crested grebes into a feeding frenzy and allowing close up viewing of this creature both above and below water level. Already this season some fantastic photos have been taken of the birds ‘dancing’ during mating rituals right in front of the wildlife centre. Common terns are back and are biding their time to move in and nest on the rafts. So despite the rather indifferent weather, the wildlife is holding up its end of the bargain and providing plenty for all to enjoy here at NWT Ranworth Broad.