Everything has it's beauty, but not everyone sees it. - Confucius
Sometimes the picture doesn't have to be perfect; it's the captured moment that counts. - me
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Saturday, 14 May 2016

Spring is in the air

The local lake has been a hive of springtime activity recently.

This pair of Mute Swans were really getting down to business a few days ago.

After all that furious splashing about, it was time to take a breather.

And then a good wash and brush up.

When all that's done, time to let the neighbours know just how you feel.

And in other news .....................

The Mallards are still frisky ...................... anywhere and anytime

with the inevitable results.

 She's got her work cut out.

The Great Crested Grebes continue doing a great job of keeping the invasive Crayfish numbers down,

and Whisky just loves to watch and learn.

Have a great weekend


Friday, 6 May 2016

May has started well

The weather here, at least, has been feeling more like summer just recently.
Time to put away the sweatshirts and dig out the t-shirts.

The birds have been pretty good too.

The first of May found me sitting on the edge of Incombe Hole, photographing a Red Kite as it soared around in the sun.

 A stunning bird.

Further along the fields I found a bird that is on the 'red list'.

Corn Bunting

A place called Pitstone Hill, and a pretty sure bet on finding these farmland birds with the jangly call.

A couple of days ago I woke early. Very early.
I hadn't slept much that night and I was feeling wide awake.
I decided myself and Whisky would go out somewhere.
I decided on RSPB Frampton Marsh, in Lincolnshire.

Although it's an RSPB reserve and they are not happy having dogs on their reserves, (even on a lead), but quite happy to have screaming kids running around, Frampton Marsh has plenty of public footpaths, all around the reserve. With some planning, some luck, and maybe a scope, it's possible to see pretty much of all what's there.

The main part is off limits to dogs though; the part where the hides are, but who wants to sit in a stuffy hide on a hot day?

As I was getting myself sorted in the car park, and Whisky was having a good sniff round, another birder came over and asked, 'is the Stilt still here?'

Now this was early in the morning, and a couple of cars were already here, so I asked,
'Stilt? Didn't know there was one, I've only just got here.'

It turned out there had been a Black-winged Stilt on the reserve, a rarity, and it was just along one of the footpaths that we were heading too.

A lovely bird, and it certainly attracted a large crowd through the day.
Glad I saw it early on, and avoided the 'circus'.

A long walk in the sun gave us some cracking birds during our visit. Turtle Doves, Short-eared Owl, Corn Bunting, Yellowhammer ................... and even a pair of boxing Hares; all from the surrounding footpaths.

A very obliging Sedge Warbler gave me a few shots,

and at the side of the path,

an Avocet.

And on the boggy bit,

A big group of breeding plumage Dunlin.

Always worth a visit here, even if I can't get onto the reserve 'proper'.

And finally, I must add this.
Recently a Black-headed Wagtail has been seen at RSPB Titchwell.
This prompted a post in the Bucks local bird group, which went ..........

Apparently the recent Black-headed Wagtail at Titchwell was found by a couple on holiday from Bucks. Anyone know who they might be? Dawn Balmer is trying to find their names per twitter.

Adam Bassett

I had to chuckle at this. I mean why would you need to know who they are?
Will they be getting a prize? Does it mean that because they came from Bucks, it counts as a half tick/record for Bucks?

For goodness sake, some birders are a strange lot.
It seems we have our fair share here in Bucks, because another message relayed today was

06/5  11:20 : Probable Wryneck : Little Marlow GP.
In the bushes opposite the small cottages on the approach path just before the gravel pit. A shape moving in the bushes and a strong clear peep peep peep ringing call.
Another birder arrived and heard the bird which had relocated in the bushes beside the last cottage on the right. He felt it was a young bird of an unknown species. I mentioned Wryneck but he was unsure. When I reached home I played recordings on Xeno-canto. Completley convinced it was this species.
Graham Langley

Oh, so many probables and might bees.

Chin chin

Enjoy your weekend, and I hope the sun shines on you.

Friday, 22 April 2016

Potpourri 2

Tying up the loose ends.


Red-breasted Merganser male

Goosander female


Grey Wagtail

 Rhiwargor Falls

Lake Vyrnwy

Little Egret



 Willow Warbler

and I'll end on one of the boy


Enjoy your day

Thursday, 7 April 2016

Seven days of April

In between the showers, hail and snow, there has been some sunshine.

And some lovely sunrises.

A quick visit to the Dyfi Osprey Project, to see one of the first Ospreys to turn up.

The most recent news from there is that the two regulars, Glesni and Monty, have now taken their places on the nest.

Just a few of the Guillemots at South Stack.

Plenty of Razorbills too.

A Sparrowhawk gave me a nice fly over while I was there.

Amongst the other birds there, was a large flock of Linnets.

A couple of miles round the coast is a place called Breakwater Country Park. It's a lovely walk along the cliff tops to Holyhead, and always something to see.

My first Willow Warbler of the year, and in the same place that I saw one this time last year.

Pied Wagtail

After a few hours exploring, it was time to start thinking about heading back; but I had to stop off at McDonalds, in Holyhead.
Not for a burger, but to see a bird I've not seen for a good few years.

 Hooded Crow.

Apparently, he's been here foraging in the bins at McDonalds for a few weeks now.

Glad I stopped off to see him.

While we've been here, another of Whisky's brothers has visited for a few days, so I'll finish with a picture of them.

 Obi, Thistle and Whisky.

Enjoy the rest of your day.

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Still here

It will soon be April, and the eagerly awaited new arrivals will soon be dropping onto our shores.
A few have made a start already; I saw my first Sand Martin of the year on 23rd March at Ynys-hir, and a couple of Ospreys have been sighted here in Wales in the last few days.

For now though, here's a selection of some of the birds that are here now.

A pair of Siskins doing a 'food pass'


Coal Tit


A bashful looking Greenfinch


Little Grebe

and finally a relaxed Whisky, enjoying a bit of sun in-between the showers.

Enjoy the rest of your day.