Sunday, 21 December 2014

Saturday, 20 December 2014


The Nuthatch (Sitta europaea)

The fifth and last of series of species that I photographed on the same walk as the Stonechat.

Of all these five species that I have featured in this series, this is the one that I am most likely to see on a regular basis.  Nonetheless it is a special bird and always worth taking images of.

Friday, 19 December 2014


The Goosander (Mergus merganser)

The fourth in the series of species that I photographed on the same walk as the Stonechat. 

One of the Sawbills, a species which I find a bit odd, "Neither fish nor fowl".
Yes, I know, its a waterfowl.
A rare visitor (as far as I am concerned) to the local Parkland lakes. I have seen only one previously, but on this occasion there were two as the final image at the bottom of this post will reveal.

Both birds were distinctly unhelpful, choosing to head for the open middle of the largest lake in the Parkland each time I observed them as I walked around the edge.
All of the images are quite poor due to the overcast light and distance involved. 

Observed here below conversing with one of the locals.

Thursday, 18 December 2014


The Treecreeper (Certhia familiaris)

The third in the series of five quality species that I was able to photograph on the same day as the Stonechat in the Parkland.

Taking reasonable images of a Treecreeper is mostly about being in the right place at the right time.
That certainly doesn't happen with me very often, but when I was taking images of other birds, this little bird below flew on to a tree trunk within range of the camera.

I thought at first I wasn't going to be lucky, as I caught sight of it flying in and landing on the other side of the trunk. I then had to wait for a few moments to see it emerging around the trunk and into view. It then kindly walked up the trunk in full view. 
I took around thirty images and then it was gone.

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Little Egret

The Little Egret (Egretta garzetta)
A bird often observed in the local area, but usually at some distance as they are quite wary of people.

This being one of the same group of images I shot on the same day as the previous Stonechat. 

This bird was feeding in a small stream adjacent to one of the large lakes in the local Parkland.
The first shot was obtained by creeping through tall dried foliage on the opposite side of the stream. The bird was unaware of my presence and I was able to withdraw from the site without alerting him.

All the subsequent images were taken as a result of him being disturbed and harassed by another fisherman. (See below)

Note the wing bone structure in the image below.

This was the other fisherman 'The Grey Heron'.
It was a typical dispute over local fishing rights.{:))

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Stonechat -Target Species

Its been a number of years since I have observed a Stonechat (Saxicola torquata) in the local area and it was not for the want of trying. I have seen them at Portland Bill in Dorset on a number of occasions (where they will almost come up and ask you to take a photograph of them.)

Recently I had received reports from local birding colleagues of one male being observed on a particular section of the local Parkland walk. So this week, as on previous recent weeks, I checked out the area in question. The Stonechat (as I have observed them) likes open ground with low vegetation particularly along the water's edge. The area I found this male was just such a location. They are quite accommodating birds and will not fly far from where you find them, in fact they tend to stake their ground and whatever the disturbance will stay close by.

NB. This was one of five species that I would term quality species, that I actually photographed on the same day in the Parkland where I regularly walk. So I will post them in turn shortly.