A rare and endangered bird was photographed flying over a nature reserve in Suffolk. 

Tony Lockhart began photographing birds across the county last year after retiring and gaining more time to pursue the hobby. 

The budding photographer wanted to capture images of a bittern, which have previously been spotted at RSPB Minsmere

Bitterns are a form of heron and are classified as a red-list endangered species and as few as 200 males remain today. 

The bittern is a rare form of heron that camouflages in reed bedsThe bittern is a rare form of heron that camouflages in reed beds (Image: Tony Lockhart) READ MORE: Family of birds discovered living under traffic cone

"They are difficult to spot due to their colouring and their habit of hiding in reed beds," said Mr Lockhart.

"However once they have chicks to raise the adults need to find food for them and so they can be seen more often if you know where to look."

The bird flew over Lakenheath FenThe bird flew over Lakenheath Fen (Image: Tony Lockhart) READ MORE: Meet 'delightful' Dawn who has been in RSPCA care for more than 500 days

Last Thursday, Mr Lockhart was sat at a viewpoint at Lakenheath Fen when a bittern landed in a reed bed nearby. 

He said: "I knew at some point it would take off again and come past the viewpoint. Fifteen minutes later it did just that."

Mr Lockhart hopes to capture more photographs of other birds like kingfishers in the near future.