Let me know when that tide's coming in won't you

Let me know when that tide's coming in won't you

Sunday, 22 April 2018

Kelling Heath

I wanted to discover a new site the last time I was at my parents. So I sought out Kelling Heath. It turns out that what I thought was Kelling Heath previously, was actually a mile and half away from the proper site.
It was a bright morning, not particularly warm, but there was plenty of activity on the heath.
From the car park I could hear plenty of bird song, with Skylarks, Linnets and Yellowhammer calling in the distance and my first Chiffchaff of the year.
It's a fantastic place, and I can imagine this being alive with Cuckoo calls in a few weeks time, maybe even Turtle Dove. It is supposed to be home to the Dartford Warbler and Adders, so I will be visiting again soon.

Linnets were in very good numbers on the gorse.


Great to see Yellowhammers in good numbers. One more for the year list.



Sunday, 15 April 2018

Burton Mere

These pictures were taken last Spring on an a visit to the RSPB reserve at Burton Mere on the Wirral. Lots of different birds on show and making themselves visible.
One of the birds I'd set out to see was the Great White Egret. There have been a few on the Wirral in the last 24 months. Needless to say, this was one of the birds that was not playing ball on this day.

Just a head at the top of the tree.

Giving a slightly better view.

Little Grebe

Oystercatcher


Spotted Redshanks chilling out.

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Turnstone

A bird always to be found on the beach at Sheringham is the Turnstone. It's pebbly beach is a great attraction for this small wading bird. There are also some nice big mossy rocks for it to probe for food.

A typical sight on the sea wall at Sheringham.

A small group bathing in some run off water.


Sunday, 8 April 2018

Redshank - Cley

Spring is with us (even if the weather is not particularly agreeing with that statement) and the bird activity has most definitely changed in recent weeks. The sound of geese overhead has been replaced with the calls of the Redshank, Avocet and other waders at the many nature reserves of the North Norfolk coast. I even heard my first calling Chiffchaff last week.
While I was sat in a hide at Cley waiting for a little bit of sunshine a Redshank obligingly walked towards me. It made up for the poor light and the distance at which anything else interesting was.
Something always turns up to make the trip worthwhile.




Sunday, 1 April 2018

Mediterranean Gull

I was at Elton Reservoir looking for a Black-necked Grebe (which I did find) when I scanned a small raft of gulls and notice two Mediterranean Gulls that had dropped in. I was expecting to see the common fair, but these were instantly obvious to me to be the Med kind. A lovely black hood, red bill and white crescents above and below the eye.


A Black-headed Gull for comparison. You can see the hood is more chocolate brown and does not extend as far down the nape .

After 10 minutes of preening, they took flight noisily.



They gave a nice fly past as I stood waiting patiently.

Sunday, 25 March 2018

Greater Scaup

While at Elton reservoir in Bury recently there was a Scaup on the water. This wasn't my primary target here, but it was nice to add to the year list all the same.
It was spending it's time alone at the far end of the reservoir, with just a male Pochard for company. Both were diving frequently and seemed to spend more time under the water than above it.








Sunday, 18 March 2018

Glaucous Gull

This was a new lifer for me. The Glaucous Gull had been present for a number of weeks at Hollingworth Lake in Rochdale. An opportunity presented itself to me last weekend to get along with my camera to see it. It really didn't take long to locate either as it was stood on a pontoon just feet from the lake shoreline. It soon took flight along with the Black-headed gulls as visitors to the lake threw bread. Once it was in the air with the other gulls it was clear to see how big this bird was in comparison. It was also very white compared to the Black-headed gulls.

For comparison of size against the much smaller Black-headed Gull. It was huge!



An Absolute beast of a gull.






Sunday, 11 March 2018

Barn Owl

A tricky bird to find at the best of times, it was a real bonus to find one out in the afternoon on a walk with my parents in Norfolk. It was bit grey and damp and so not easy to photograph. I spent most of my time just admiring it through the binoculars and with the naked eye. They look so majestic in flight with those broad white wings. A real bonus to seen at any time of the day or year.

Light didn't help, but at least the face and tail feathers are in focus.


Sunday, 4 March 2018

A nice pair

Something a little more common, in the form of a Blue Tit and a Great Tit. These were taken on a cold frosty afternoon at Pennington Flash. There's always a lot of activity at the feeding hides and on this particular day there were many Blue, Great and Long-tailed Tits, plus a few Willow Tits.
A couple duly obliged to perch on the nearest posts from the hide.

Blue Tit

Great Tit

Sunday, 25 February 2018

Waxwing on my doorstep.

There's something about the Waxwing that has that Wow factor for me. So when one was reported just 15 minutes away from my front door, I couldn't not go and see it. I usually see them in larger flocks, but this was a single bird that had been around for a few days and had a ready supply of berries on hand.
It was a cold grey day, and the sky was typical of many that are the background of my Waxwing pictures. Thankfully the bird itself does enough to brighten up even the dullest shots.
Only gripe I have is that it stayed in between the branches of this tree and it was difficult to get a clean shot of it. Shouldn't really complain. The bird was happy enough, I was happy to add it to my year list and delighted to catch up with one again.








Sunday, 18 February 2018

Hooded Crow

I'd seen that a Hooded Crow had been in Wigan for a week or two, or at least reported for a week or two. I'd always wanted to see one and it wasn't too far away. I didn't want to miss out, or have that regret of missing out, when it was not even 30 miles away. So I made the effort to go and see it. A close relative of the Carrion Crow, it is usually confined to northern Scotland, Ireland, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man.

On arrival it had been flushed/scared off by an over enthusiastic photographer. Now these are really getting on my nerves, as they are giving most, if not all bird photographers a bad name. They have no field craft and move selfishly towards the birds to get better pictures and ultimately flush them. This means no one gets to see them properly. They will then move/chase after the bird. When will they learn, that if you just stay still and maybe even hide out of view that the birds may actually come to you? This means that you can get your pictures and those that have no interest in photographing them can also enjoy the bird for as long as possible. They are there for everyone, so stop being so selfish.

Anyway, now I've got that off my chest. It eventually flew back and spent a lot time on the heath, and gave me good views and even a fly past. Very pleased with this particular lifer.







With patience, it came closer.