Calling all birdwatching enthusiasts! During a visit to a RSPB nature reserve in Cheshire, 14 year old Kate Souster took a perfect birding shot with three different kinds of heron in a row. Little did she know that when she snapped this photo, she was capturing a very unusual event – three different species of heron in one place. A great white egret (left), little egret (middle) and cattle egret (right), were all photographed at RSPB Burton Mere Wetlands hunting for fish.
Rare bird sighting
All three types of bird have only recently become regular visitors to the UK but seeing all three in winter is extremely unusual, especially in the North of England. One of the species, the cattle egret, is rarely seen in the UK. Only aound 100 cattle egrets visit every year, and they have only bred in the UK twice, in 2008 and in 2017. The little egret and great white egret are more common, but are more at home along the South and East coast.
Exciting moment for teenager
It was particularly exciting for Kate who was visiting the reserve during half term. Kate said “I knew what a little egret was, but I’ve never seen the other two before. I was especially surprised to be able to take a picture of all of them in the same photo and another visitor told me that it was extremely rare and that he’s never seen it before. I felt very happy with my shot.”
RSPB Burton Mere Wetlands are excited to report that the birds have been coming closer and closer to the viewing area at reception and can be seen most days. Bring your camera – you won’t ‘egret it!