We weren’t sure if we could do justice to RSPB Arne on an afternoon’s visit on our way home from our “non-birding” visit to the New Forest (if I’m honest we would have made it 3 birding trips in the three days if the weather hadn’t been so bad and we hadn’t opted instead for a visit to the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu) but we thought the walk would be good for us anyway.
We were very lucky as the sun made a brief appearance and a spoonbill flew in briefly and flew out again with its little egret friend.
It was very strange indeed how the spoonbill flew in to Shipstal Beach, seemed to go and find the little egret in one of the pools, flew together to another pool, fed together for a while and then flew off together across the bay.
We made our way round to the hide and enjoyed watching a curlew having a wash and brush up.
There were oystercatchers, whimbrel, and Brent geese and shelduck on the spit where we had seen large flocks of spoonbills last year.
Along the (quite often very muddy) paths we saw chaffinch, dunnock , great tits, robins and blackbirds.
When the sun came out the gorse looked splendid.