Saturday, 14 March 2015

Seasons collide

IT was bitter out today, as spring struggled to get a hold.  I saw a large flock of fieldfares and redwings bunny hopping from field to field, joined by chattering starlings.  However the native birds were singing and I heard my first chiff-chaffs too.  My hunt for wheatears was unsuccessful, but there was delight in a large flock of sand martins over the Somerset Levels reedbeds.  Other highlights were the squealing water rails, the coughing bitterns and the complaining little grebes.  I did not spend long out - but it was worth the effort.

Here's a record shot of a sand martin:

Monday, 2 March 2015

Three birds

YES I know that they're not going to get me an award, but I quite liked the distant views of the two mute swans and a marsh harrier.  You should have seen how small the snipe came out on my photos!

The swans were in a courting mood...

Friday, 20 February 2015

Targets in Somerset

I'M on the hunt; this year I've set myself some wildlife challenges - one of them is to photograph a bearded reedling (aka bearded tit) on the Somerset Levels.

I came close last weekend and did actually get to hear one pink pinking away, having followed a lead from another birder, but no sightings this time...

There were numerous other lovely species around.  I had a great view of a peregrine falcon flying low over the heads of an elderly couple, walking in front of me clutching their bins - they were oblivious.  Also great white egrets, goosanders, kingfisher, winter ducks to name a few.

I did manage to get quite a decent long distance shot of a water rail.  The reported short-eared owl was nowhere to be seen.  I did see a Siberian chiff-chaff for the first time, however I must admit that I did not realize that it was one until the same friendly birder above told me so - I had a blurred photo to confirm its ID too.

Glasto Tor

Water rail

Reed bunting female