A trip to Norfolk was beckoning,so with that in mind I set off on the 225 mile journey, Southeast, across the M62 and down the A1 into Cambridgeshire,where I decided to pop into the RSPB reserve at Fen Drayton.Here there are a series of large mature gravel pits, closely knitted with easy access footpaths.On the first main pit I came to, I noticed a small floating raft,put out to encourage Terns to breed .A pair of common Terns had taken residence and where busily feeding a nearly fledged chick!
There are a good number of these birds here,all breeding well inland.However a lot of the chicks were predated by various gulls and the resident Marsh Harrier, according to one of the wardens!
It was the first year Marsh Harrier have bred successfully and they are hoping for more to follow,however it will be at the expense of the Tern chicks, unfortunately!
They have had Bittern there too,but as yet haven`t bred.I`m sure it is only a matter of time before this happens.Everybody I spoke to seemed quite positive about the whole reserve in general.The habitat they have there is superb, and needs little development!
Through the autumn they have good numbers of waders and wildfowl passing through.Osprey,merlin,hen harrier,peregrine all use the reserve as a stop off place to rest and feed!In early May good numbers of Hobby gather, to feast on the abundant Dragonfly that the reserve attracts.All in all, the place is well worth a visit,no matter what time of year.I for one will be returning to this relatively new reserve in the coming months..........