Twitchers across Norfolk have turned their eyes to the sky as thousands of birds flock back to the county.

In one of the world's greatest migrations, birds have begun travelling from areas in southern Europe and Africa to areas around The Wash.

RSPB sites Titchwell Marsh and Snettisham are gearing up as 30 species are set to inhabit Norfolk's rich wetlands, reedbeds and mudflats.

Eastern Daily Press: The common ternThe common tern (Image: David Tipling/ RSPB)Eastern Daily Press: RSPB Titchwell RSPB Titchwell (Image: Ben Andrew/ RSPB)

The birds stop over in the east in the summer months to breed or head further north - using the route as a "superhighway", often stopping to refuel along the way.

The migration is celebrated on May 11 with World Migratory Day. 

Hayley Roan, senior site manager at RSPB Titchwell Marsh, said: “The Wash is incredibly important for the birds and the insects they come here to feed on. 

"Here on the Norfolk coast and across the east coast of England, we’re especially privileged to be a part of one of the world’s eight ‘bird superhighways’.

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"This amazing phenomenon of nature is happening right here, right now on Norfolk’s coast and we’re seeing a surge in bird migration, as common tern, avocet and Mediterranean gulls are arriving at Titchwell and Snettisham.

Eastern Daily Press: A pair of Mediterranean GullsA pair of Mediterranean Gulls (Image: Martin Campbell/ RSPB)Eastern Daily Press: RSPB Titchwell in north NorfolkRSPB Titchwell in north Norfolk (Image: Ben Andrew/ RSPB)

"Seeing the first swallows arrive back from Africa, watching the common terns zipping around or hearing the enigmatic cuckoo calling reminds me of the amazing journeys they have been on to arrive back here on the east coast of Norfolk."

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This year the campaign will stress the need for proactive conservation measures to protect insects, such as reducing the use of pesticides and fertilisers and switching to nature-friendly farming. 

The birds will call Norfolk home until August when they will leave our shores, flying along the East Atlantic Flyway to their wintering grounds.

Some of the birds on their way include the common tern, avocets, and the Mediterranean gull.