Hide – Bann Estuary November 2022

Eight members of our group met at the Bann Estuary on a wet and windy November morning.  It was 10am, grey and dreary with a low expectation of seeing anything much on the estuary.  As we settled ourselves in the hide the tide was on the turn to low but there appeared to be very little movement in the water.  We thought that the flood gates were open to allow the heavy rainfall to flow down the river to the open sea to avoid flooding farmland further inland.  The river appeared empty save for a few Mallard but as we searched the waters we observed Teal, Red Breasted Mergansers, a Great Northern Diver, Great Crested Grebe and some familiar waders.  After half an hour John Clarke  alerted us to a bird in the distance; “Is that an Osprey?”  Everyone turned their attention to the large bird in the distance and discovered that it was indeed an Osprey.  Camera shutters and motor winds went into overdrive as we sought to capture this magnificent and rare visitor to our shores.  Over the space of an hour the Osprey disappeared and then returned with Crows and Gulls mobbing it.  We saw it dive for a fish albeit some distance away.  A Merlin also made an appearance as did a Glaucous Gull so it was a successful morning after all.  The icing on the cake for two members came when the Osprey, a trout grasped in talons flew right over the hide.