Trimley Marshes

In preparation for my Suffolk Wildlife Trust photography workshop next weekend at Trimley Marshes I headed off down the A14 to have a look around the reserve. The weather forecast was for a dull day and after the 40 minute walk from the car park carrying a heavy camera bag I opened the window of the first hide. I must admit I was a little deflated, I looked across the marshes and saw very little wildlife and all was off in the distance. I popped into two more hides and started to see some more wildfowl but again at a distance. I ended up in the last hide and finally got my camera out to view the ever increasing number of birds spread out on the floods in front of me. They were still at a distance but putting into practice the two main words I use for nature photography, ‘Patience and Persistance’ the next few hours proved to be very productive.

The flooded meadows had large numbers of over wintering ducks such as Wigeon and Teal plus a good number of Lapwings were also present.


The Wigeon feed on the grass on the edge of the floods but are always on the lookout and any disturbance has them flying back onto the safety of the water, even if it’s only a crow.



A few Shoveler ducks were present………..


……..and the drakes were looking to find a female.



I’m not sure if this female was impressed with this drake!!


Wildlife photography is often full of surprises and during a quite spell this Reed Bunting landed on this tree right in front of the hide.


Even better it fed on the reed seed heads.



There was around 100 or so Brent Geese in the area and were feeding on the grass area at the far end of the reserve so I headed down to get some shots.


Also present was a Little Egret.




When I had arrived the River Orwell had been at high tide but as the tide went out it exposed the mudflats which then became a feeding ground for a small number of waders such as this Redshank.


The Brent Geese also headed to these mudflats.


Luckily the weather forecast proved to be wrong and I was blessed with the clouds breaking around mid afternoon to give me a couple of hours of better light which really added to the images of the small groups of geese flying to and from the mudflats.





As the day drew to an end the number of species in front of the hides increased and I was able to photograph a number of species in flight and on the flooded meadows.







As the light faded unfortunately the sun sank behind a cloud so no sunset but I was able to get the odd silhouette image.


So after my initial doubts this beautiful reserve is an excellent place to photograph many species of birds. I’m really looking forward to running the workshop next Saturday and I’m hopeful our participants get as many oppotunities that I had especially as we have high tide during the afternoon.

And to think this reserve and all of it’s wildlife is in the shadow of one of Europe’s largest ports proving it’s not just baseball movies that should have the tag line  ‘If you build it they will come’.




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