Sunday 29 April 2012

The BIG Wet!

For days it has been rain, rain and a bit more rain. Marvellous for Ducks and the like. But for all else a miserable period indeed. How the young will survive this drop in temperature and the dampness or come to that, the adults manage to find sufficient food, for those hungry mouths begging for more on every visit. Of course not to forget the birders out for a soaking, those that braved the elements that is. So some bits from the period of the "Big Wet".


These three guys were on my local pond, I assume taking shelter from the rain ?? The rain was coming down like stair rods, for those who can remember what they were! and it stayed like that until around 5 or 6 don't know which I was to busy watching the Cricket, that stopped me getting bored!!

     Oh well back to work tomorrow bet gonna get bored there then "big smiley face.."

cheers Paul.

Sunday 15 April 2012

Spring has Sprung, all over the place.

I have always thought that, for me at least, it was the arrival of the Common Redstart that really set spring in action. That red tail bouncing in the hedgerows, the red of the breast and grey back is just the right accessory for the fresh green leaves bursting out all over the country. Euphemistically called the Green.

Mind you they tend not to arrive on their own, as the hedgerows reverberate with the songs of Blackcap, Willow Warbler,Whitethroat and many others along with the over wintering birds.

So an afternoon spent along one hedgerow at Venus Pools produced some exciting results,
and I am sure it will produce a lot more over the next few weeks.
so until then.


Saturday 14 April 2012

Parents and young are doing fine.

The Grebes at Woodlane are doing fine , and apart from some sibling rivalry or bullying spend a lot of time being ferried around the lake, being fed juicy feathers and the the odd fish.

Wots that mum wots that mum?

Yawn Boring.

Dad, Dad, Dad you sleep yet!

Oooo! Feather

Juicy feather any one? me,me,me.

Go this way mum, no go this way mum.

Look Dad no wings.

Ahhhh! Cute.

It's mine get of it.
Ahh! Rain.

You try singing all day.

The possible Channel Wagtail.

So nearly caught up odds and sods to come.

Cheers Paul

A Final LEK !!

 A final group from the LEK day with a couple of additions from a more recent trip. With better light and some more action it proved a most productive day.

                                                      There are more to come.

Friday 13 April 2012

About time too !

For more years than I care to remember, I have planned an annual outing for a spectacle that is fast disappearing from our moorlands across the UK. Well 2012 proved the year that I would actually realise that plan, to go and photograph a Black Grouse Lek.

This did of course mean a stupid o'clock rise and a rushed Maccy,d's (god bless their overnight staff) fortified with coffee it was away for what turned out to be an amazing morning. Even the weather could not dampen the spirits of myself or that of the Grouse.

Pose they did

Shout and burble

Challenging all comers.

And no backing down once challenged.

And they did.
Beak and claw.
Feathers flew.

The whole episode lasted for the eight males contesting the females some two hours before they departed.
A brilliant early mornings adventure.


Tuesday 10 April 2012

Parkgate produces

Not having had the chance to get to Parkgate for the high tides of last year it was with both hands that I accepted the offer of a lift.
The tides were not of the 10+ order but the on shore wind would push the tide up to around the ten meters height. We arrived around ten in the morning expecting the high tide at around 11:00 but it was at least another two hours before the flood began.

After Merlin, Sparrowhawk , Peregrine and Kestrel it was the turn of the Hen Harrier all be it distant as it hunted above the taller grasses. and not to be outdone the Spoonbill dropped in followed by a very nice pair of Short-eared Owls.

And it did come close.

And Closer

And that was as close as it came.

And in for a rest


Slow quartering over the grass.

And finally.

One less Moorhen.

Which it carried around avoiding the gulls.

The final pass.

The Waders were harried by a peregrine.

Common Snipe at VP.
The wind was gusting at Force 4 to 5 which was not helping with the steadying of the camera whilst not cold the wind made it feel as though it was a lot cooler than it was. After five hours it was time to retreat and head home via McDonald's,