Today was one of those 'red letter' days.
Dave and I were already out on the reserve when a report of the buff breasted sand came on along with a fly-over cattle egret. Gutted that we had missed the egret (reserve tick for both of us) we went to look for the sandpiper. The bird was still present although a bit distant. I left Dave in the hide and headed back towards the office. I had only got as far as Island Hide when Dave called to say the egret was on the brackish marsh. A brisk walk back to the hide revealed the bird feeding in the middle of the lagoon - reserve tick 260.
The contractors needed to do some further work on the breach and spooked to egret and it flew to the grazing meadow with the cattle. At one point you could see it standing on a fencepost from the visitor centre.
At about 4:30 I was working in the office when David and Terry came back from their hide helping and started telling me about some people who were watching a juv bittern by the main path. At almost the same time, Dave radioed to say thay people were reporting a little bittern by the main path. We rushed down to the spot to be confronted by full frame shots of a juv little bittern feeding in the open!! After 10mins, or so, the bird re-appeared at the bottom of the reeds before dissappearing. A visitor showed us a photo of the juv bittern that was reported yesterday afternoon from the same place and there is also a report of a juv bittern being photographed in the same place on Tuesday! Who knows where is has come from but I am sure the recent strong southerly winds had something to do with it.
9 curlew sand, 2 little stint, 9 spotshanks, 20 yellow wags and a med gull were the added bonus on the fresh marsh this evening.