Sunday, 30 August 2009


Birds gathering to leave the mudflats in the Wash and move over to the nearby lakes at the RSPB Snettisham Beach until the tide goes out again.

I was invited by Ruth and Tony, whom I met in Italy in June, to visit their seashore cottage over the weekend with the highest tide in August so that I could see the spectacle of the gathering birds leaving the mudflats at the Wash as the tide came in. It was a magical few days. For those who don't know our Norfolk landscape, the Wash is an area cutting into the Fens between Norfolk and Lincolnshire coasts. It used to have many a cargo ship ferrying goods to and from abroad but the Wash has silted up and is too shallow for this trading to continue into the inland harbours.

Not having permission from mine hosts, I have not posted images of their lovely little old fashioned cottage and moored boats on a spit of land with the Wash one side and the lakes the other, nor Tony going off in his sea going kayak...... but here are some images from our walk early Sunday morning going down the raised bank towards the RSPB.

walking down to the RSPB passed the remains of an old jetty

'twitchers' with their large interchangeable lenses

Twitchers is a local word for people who are fanatical about viewing birds and travel many miles just to have a sighting of one unusual species.

Here are the lakes where the Society builds 'hides' for visitors to view the birds after they've left the Wash because the tide has come right in.

As it turned out, we saw more and larger flocks of birds that evening from the shoreline immediately outside the cottage as can be seen from the first topmost image . Here is one of the many interesting sights during a long walk Saturday after passing the Sailing Club.
Searching for lunch on the mudflats

Finally (before I bore you to death) is a fond farewell on Sunday evening after a walk across the flats (part mud, part sand, part pebbles). We walked back to the raised bank outside the cottage and sat in deckchairs watching the sun go down before packing our cars to leave for home . Forgot to tell you we actually swam out here where the water was safe with firm sand beneath our feet and the sun was going down. I even swam up the wonderful bright sunbeam. Magical.
Hope you enjoyed my wonderful weekend communing with nature. By the way, well worth enlarging the images to get full detail.


RHCarpenter said...

How lovely! It always is such a delightful thing to see the sights along the shoreline...and so many birds! My husband would love it! He'd be out there with his camera from morning to night :) Glad you had the opportunity to share this glorious weekend with your hosts. I bet that water was a bit nippy, though?

Joan Sandford-Cook said...

Surprisingly Rhonda the water was ok (once in) as it warmed up as it came across the mud flats heated by the full day's sun before the tide came in.

debwardart said...

Thanks for another lovely travelogue (I love to hear about your trips!). And you have some nice photo references for future paintings.

Vicki Greene said...

How delightful! Thanks for sharing the beautiful pictures.

Robert A Vollrath said...

I was raised by a bird lover and my little Grand Daughter seems to take after her Great Grandmother on loving to watch birds:) Great photos.

Margaret Ann said...

Beautiful photos...You were so correct about enlarging them...So many birds...what a treat! Those lenses were amazing!!!