I got out to the first screen by three thirty and already there had been large flocks patrolling the reserve, restlessly settling and chattering in the treetops prior to going down in the reed bed.
After twenty minutes or so, huge numbers of birds began to fly in from all points of the compass and start to settle in the reeds straight out from the screen. On the evening I was there they did not do their fantastic pre roost display. They didn't imitate whales or create swirling ellipses and elegant parabolas. There was one massive flock that came in from the west of over twenty thousand, like a low sweeping cloud. The whole mass swept down round and piled into the reeds. The sound of whirring wings was a loud thrumming.
As one of the visitors on Wednesday said " this is one of the best free shows you can have".As I walked past the oaks along the bridleway what I had first thought were windblown leaves resolved themselves into bats spilling out of one of the hollow trees and as I reached the carpark field a Woodcock flew over heading out from its daytime roost to feed on Greenaways.
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