Its been a long long time since a pair of Bitterns have reared a successful brood at Stodmarsh. There has been lots of work behind the scene to encourage a pair to stay for the spring and the last few years a booming male has been heard and so hopes were high . A wonderful achievement occurred this year when a successful brood of three albeit at the second attempt occurred giving hours of pleasure for those who have made a visit to see them. I spend a lot of time watching Bitterns in the winter from the Reedbed hide enduring the cold weather waiting for a fleeting view of a bird on the ice or in the air, so to be able to watch four birds ( three juveniles and a female ) in a warm climate has been a pleasure. The camera was snapping away with lots of opportunities for all however the wind blowing the reeds about mucked up a lot of photos. I watched on a few occasions the female arrive with food and the youngsters scrambling to be first to meet her, this was comical as the birds were not very good at flying. They showed all the normal mannerisms of a fully fledged bird skypointing etc and i could clearly see them moving their loose throat feathers to blend in with the reeds. It was a change to watch these birds amongst the green foliage with lots still in summer bloom adding welcome colour from the winter setting that i am used to. These birds will probably move on soon and we will have the wintering birds from Holland etc coming in to boost the numbers again. Here is a few photos from todays visit.