Gunners Park and Shoebury Ranges nature reserve in Shoeburyness has more than 12 habitats, ranging from coastal grassland to remnant sand dunes and a central lake. This variety of habitats and its proximity to the Thames Estuary means this nature reserve is a prime location for migrating birds to stop by at, on their way up and down the country.
A female Eider duck, a relatively large seaduck that nests in colonies in northern Britain and is normally far out at sea, appeared by the seawall to feed in the shallows and offer close up views for some very excited visitors!
Shortly after a Black Throated Diver, a smart looking diving bird, showed up on the lake in the middle of the reserve. This bird did not seem phased by the wildlife photographers that flocked to the lake and put on a wonderful display for them.
Andrew Armstrong, Ranger at Gunners Park and Shoebury Ranges nature reserve says, “This is always a fantastic site for birdwatching, you never know what you might see stopping by on migration. To see these two wonderful birds and so close up was pretty special though. It was great that so many visitors to the nature reserve were able to see them, it was almost as if they were posing for photos!”